What if the content in textbooks were digitally enabled and viewable on a tablet computer that was GPS enabled? Could you tap into data from Google Field Trips, http://www.fieldtripper.com/, to make the textbook location-aware. Could the study of a period in history automatically identify nearby historical points of interest, photos or videos related to the content? Could your surroundings, now digitized, augment your reality?
What if before reading the book, you took a short assessment to determine which learning styles are most suited to you? What if that learning style followed you across all online textbooks? What if all content and presentations changed based upon your assessed and recorded learning styles or the recorded preferences of the reader? Code Halos, the data about each teacher, tutor and student could be saved and used to help students learn better and faster, and for teachers and tutors to be more efficient and effective. Could there be six different versions of each textbook based upon the different learning styles?
Could gamification be introduced into textbooks to motivate assignment completion and compliance? Could better scores unlock levels in an associated learning game?
What if an online AILA (Artificial Intelligent Learning Agent) followed you across all textbooks and online content and helped present the content in a manner most suitable to your learning style?
What if every online textbook was automatically socialized, and students could discuss each page and subject and link out to additional information? What if there were all kinds of complementary content and tutorials available that were both free and for a fee? Everything from videos, podcasts and additional help notes.
For teachers, what if suggested assignments, quizzes and tests (and optional online automatic grading) were available for use by registered teachers. This would make the textbook more appealing if the teachers could be more efficient with their time when they used it.
What if AI (artificial intelligent) learning agents helped the teacher remember the student’s details, and the student’s most suitable learning style and history each time an assignment was reviewed? Could this intelligence help the teacher better adapt his/her teaching style to the individual student?
What if the textbook was really just a platform for learning. One that included text, images, audio, video, games and assorted other learning tool?
Could students with the same learning styles be aligned with online teachers and tutors that specialize in those styles?
I hope these questions will help you ponder the incredible impact that the transformation from physical to digital will have in the learning and publishing industries and in others.
It is important for every company to be thinking through digital transformation and how it will impact their specific company, market and industry in the very near future.
Senior Analyst, Digital Transformation Cognizant
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***Full Disclosure: These are my personal opinions. No company is silly enough to claim them. I am a mobility and digital transformation analyst, consultant and writer. I work with and have worked with many of the companies mentioned in my articles.