Turning the Page: The Toronto eBooks Study

Student Experience of eBooks: How they are found, used, and (not) read

Presented at the 2009 OLA Superconference, Thursday Jan 29  10:40 a.m.

We present findings of interest to librarians from the UTL eBooks user experience study conducted in 2008 at University of Toronto Libraries. Combining research from surveys, user interaction and observation, and design research, we share the hows and whys of student and scholar use of eBooks. This study will help illuminate the questions you have from watching the increase of collection and use of eBooks in the research library, such as:

  • What do students prefer to read and use, and why?
  • Are students actually reading the books?
  • Are they reading online?
  • How do they want publishers to improve eBooks?

We also discuss how the research accommodated the ongoing implementation of the new eBooks platform, and the differences we found between the current platform and the new systems. We will also present eBook usage statistics at the University of Toronto and discuss our informed speculations about eBook adoption during the process of major technology change.

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