Publishing Research Quarterly

, Volume 34, Issue 3, pp 417–429 | Cite as

The Emergence of Digital Course Materials in Higher Education and Their Effectiveness in Teaching and Engaging Students

  • Jessica MoroEmail author


About 20 million students are currently enrolled in colleges and universities across the country taking courses that, the majority of the time, require some sort of publisher-provided print and/or digital course materials.’ Historically, these have been provided by traditional publishing companies such as Pearson, Cengage, and McGraw-Hill, but with the increase in technology usage in higher education, more companies have emerged in this space such as OpenStax, a company that provides digital texts in high enrollment college courses for free. Usage of materials in college courses, particularly digital ones, are extremely useful and allow students to engage with their materials in different ways. By understanding how these materials are used in their courses, historically and currently, by both professors and students, one can start to understand the importance of them and what is needed now and for the future to ensure students are given the greatest chance to succeed in their courses.


Higher education Textbooks Course materials eText Online homework system 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Pace UniversityNew YorkUSA

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