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E-readers or Textbooks?

Submitted by Tony Howard on August 13, 2011 – 3:24 pmNo Comment

Books. Paper. Folders. Pens and pencils – these are all the things that college students use on a day-to-day basis. Books weigh so much you don’t even need weights in the gym anymore. But with new technologies, there are a few students who are taking a lighter approach this semester.

With e-readers students no longer need to purchase actual books. They can now choose from the Kindle ($139), the Nook ($138), the SkyTex ($75), the Sony Reader ($110), and let’s not forget the iPad, the most expensive of the group with a retail price of $466.

Freshman mass communication major Alyss Rogsclale said she loves her e-reader. Compared to textbooks, “it’s so much cheaper than buying a $100 textbook because I can pay $20 and it also saves paper.”

While some students feel that the electronic approach is best some professors think otherwise. English professor Laura Vilar said, “I’m rather old school, and would prefer to have my students use actual books so that they can make annotations, underline passages, etc. I teach literature so working closely with texts is key.”

Another English professor, Zabelle Stodola, said, “I don’t mind, though when students are using a device with a screen, it can be hard for a teacher to see if they are really using the device for an academic purpose. I would find it disconcerting if all the students in a class use e-readers.” Though she has only had two or three students who have used the devices in her classroom, she said that she is for anything that encourages more students to successfully read.

But some professors are not the only ones that still seem to prefer books. Ashley Calabotta, freshman biology major, said, “I much rather prefer textbooks over my Nook. I just love the feeling of a nice paperback book. It’s more of a sentiment for me.”

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