Engaging Communities: A Digital, Open-Access, Opensource Textbook
Fellows: Ames Hawkins and Suzanne Blum-Malley
The original purpose and goal of this project was to revise a textbook that existed only as chapter pdf documents available online into a far more accessible, user-friendly, digital text that could be offered to students and teachers across a variety of platforms (online, e-book, mobile) and with a reconfigured organizational format.
Twelve students, five Columbia College instructors, twenty-two Graduate Student Instructors, and two external institution reviewers provided feedback on the redesigned text by participating in an online survey or an online discussion board. Reviewers/users were specifically asked to respond to the content of Engaging Communities itself as well as to access to the content. All of the reviews were overwhelmingly positive, both in terms of content and presentation, but the three groups of reviewers offer distinct insights, which we will use for continual revisions/improvements to the materials.
With much wider use of Engaging Communities planned for the Spring 2013 semester, we plan to conduct a larger and more comprehensive assessment and survey of students and instructors early in May 2013. We will use comments and feedback to make revisions and edits as necessary, which is quite easy to do in the existing digital formats. We also plan continued development of the digital/multi-media theoretical lens modules over the course of the next year and will actively seek contributions of instructors using the text.