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Donald A. Rieck Research Grant

CCUMC is dedicated to the improvement of higher education through developing knowledge and practice in the area of leadership in media and academic technology. The CCUMC research grant is named in memory and honor of former CCUMC Executive Director Donald A. Rieck, who contributed almost two decades of leadership to the organization and mentorship of its members.

2012 Grant Recipient - "What are the Relationships Between E-textbook Usage and Student Learning?"

The CCUMC Research Committee has selected the research project "What are the Relationships Between E-textbook Usage and Student Learning?" submitted by the research team of Samuel Van Horne, Kathy Schuh, and Jae-Eun Russell from the University of Iowa for $20,000 in funding for 2012-2013.  CCUMC's Research Committee and the University of Iowa research team intend that this research will provide valuable guidance to colleges & universities as they evaluate support for further adoption of e-textbooks.  This work will benefit both the CCUMC membership in the evolving media and academic technology landscape, and higher education as a whole.

The research team writes that while electronic textbooks are gaining in popularity in higher education, some studies have shown that students prefer traditional textbooks to e-textbooks, while other studies have shown that students using traditional textbooks and students using e-textbooks achieve similar learning outcomes. Previous research has not often examined how students use interactive features in e-textbooks (e.g., the ability to annotate text, share notes with classmates, and post questions) and whether these uses are related to learning outcomes.  The research teams plans to determine whether college students who use e-textbooks achieve better learning outcomes than students who use traditional textbooks in similar courses, whether annotation tools in the e-textbook is a predictor of their learning outcomes, whether instructors who use e-textbooks encounter roadblocks and which remedies, training, or instructions help them to successfully integrate the e-textbook into their teaching.  The research will consist of a mixed-methods study examining the relationship between e-textbook usage and learning outcomes at the University of Iowa during their upcoming e-textbook pilot.  The authors will present their results in the CCUMC College & University Media Review journal, and at a future CCUMC Annual Conference.