eTexts at Illinois: Digital Textbook Publishing

Glenda Morgan
Director of Academic Technology Services & eLearning Strategist
University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign

Millind Basole
eText Lead
University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign


The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign recently debuted an innovative approach to providing students with electronic textbooks and instructional materials. The etext platform and process provides an endpoint-neutral and completely accessible platform for presenting text, equations and a variety of multimedia in textbook form. The content comes from two major sources: faculty developed content (both where faculty retain copyright as well as open textbooks), and publisher owned content. Academic Technology Services is actively seeking to partner with the library to leverage library holdings for use in etextbooks where such uses are possible. The benefits of the etext at Illinois service includes considerably lower costs for students, publishing opportunities for faculty, device neutrality, and a platform that is markedly more accessible and easier to use than most commercial solutions. This briefing will include a demonstration of eText at Illinois and the technical infrastructure underlying it, a discussion of the process and approach to accessibility, and a review of future plans and strategies for expanding the service.

Last updated:  Thursday, December 13th, 2012