Mobile devices, such as the iPad, iPhone and Android, have created new opportunities for faculty to rethink how they approach course materials. Tools are now available that allow you to easily author an interactive textbook that includes images, audio, movies and even interactive elements.
The CIT is exploring these options and would like to hear from faculty interested in creating their own textbook or course materials for Apple’s iPad or other devices.
In late October, Apple released a new version of iBooks Author, a page layout and authoring tool that lets you easily create interactive textbooks for use on the iPad or iPhone. This new version of the software has added support for mathematical expressions and equation editing using LaTeX and MathML notation, as well as enhancements for embedding audio and video and interactive widgets.
Several options are also available for faculty interested in authoring course materials that will work on a variety of platforms (iPad, Android, or Kindle) using the open epub standard for ebooks. If you have a Mac with Pages, you can directly create and export epub books and there are several free page layout software packages for Mac and Windows computers especially created for epub authoring.
If you have an idea for creating a multimedia mobile textbook or course materials, contact the CIT to talk with one of our consultants about the opportunities available.
Randy A. Riddle consults with faculty in the Humanities and Social Sciences on integrating technology into teaching. He has been a CIT consultant since 2000. His professional interests include e-learning, social networking, online productivity tools, video and multimedia, and visualization. Randy's current work includes management of the CIT's Faculty Fellows program, consulting on Coursera course design and exploring areas such as e-textbook authoring. His other interests outside of work include restoration of vintage recording formats and broadcasting and film history. He volunteers for the Old Time Radio Researchers Group and maintains an ongoing blog on radio history research.