Open Textbooks Explained

26 Aug

Flat World  Knowledge, an open textbook publishing house, was given recognition by nothing less than the North American Library organisation in December 2010.    The publisher was included in the association’s  ‘Outstanding Business Reference Sources.  ‘ It’s a major accomplishment for opensource textbooks.  An opensource textbook is a book printed under a special open license.  It isn’t the same as normal textbooks in that it can be accessed, downloaded, read, printed out, or distributed at much less expensive costs if not absolutely free.  The publishers and writers supply the full authorization for the more  ‘open ‘ use of their books by users / readers.  Modern tutors and scholars see opensource reference materials as the likely best response to the decades-long challenges referring to accessibility of standard textbooks.  The books tweak the normal publishing model, that has been understood to be blitzed by challenges.  The New Media  Partnership  in its 2010 Horizon Report has identified open textbooks as major elements of fast progressing open content adoption in further education.  Production starts with the supposed open textbook publishers.

It is awfully rare for conventional book publishers to consent to make their titles open due to business and earnings concerns.  Therefore , open textbook publishers have to provide their own books.  They hire writers, which are typically teachers to provide the content.

Image rights clearing will need to be undergone.  Categorical  photographs will need to be cleared for each project and even for reuse in more titles.  As proved by open textbook publishers, it is generally difficult to get clearances and authorization to use certain photographs when manufacturing opensource books.  But it can be attainable.  There are even personal setups that create opensource books for printing and distribution.

US-based CK12 is an illustrative example of those. The key target of the group is to help lower overall education cost across the land thru production and distribution which can on occasion be ideal reference materials for learning in particular courses. Writers and publishers will rationally not generate revenue from producing and vending of opensource textbooks.  Therefore , there are countless setups that are providing grants or other types of fiscal motivations for production and release of open approved textbooks.

Frequently the reference materials are made accessible and printable online in order to noticeably trim down any probable printing cost on the publisher.

Jules Mariano is a full-time freelance search engine and social media  marketing specialist and a web developer specializing in web content  development. He is the co-founder of VPRO Digital Marketing. He currently writes  for BookGator.

BookGator is a social platform where students, instructors, and student  interest groups can work together to reduce cost of textbooks and education in general. Visit their site to learn  more about how to save more on college textbooks.

One Response to “Open Textbooks Explained”


  1. Students choose print textbooks « College Textbooks Savings - August 29, 2012

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