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Digital science textbooks 'could save UK education'

8th September 2010

Converting science textbooks and other educational material into ebook formats could protect the UK's reputation in teaching and learning, it has been argued.

A white paper by e-publishing specialist Digital Publisher claimed that hundreds of millions of pounds a year could be saved from education budgets if more science textbooks and similar teaching aids were available in a digital format, as this is less costly than buying physical copies.

The firm noted that the UK's teaching sector is facing 'unprecedented pressure' after chancellor George Osborne announced education spending in England could be slashed by up to 25 per cent over the next four years, but said making greater use of ebooks could create savings.

It also pointed out the idea has previously been mooted in the US, as California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger suggested publishing all textbooks digitally to reduce the USD 350 million (GBP 226.5 million) the state spends on educational aids each year.

Further stressing the benefits of the new formats, Digital Publisher's head of digital Ian Jackson added: 'Ebooks can be far superior to textbooks because of embedded rich media in the form of video and audio as well as a host of other features.'

This week, Random House Group revealed that Graham Greene fans will be able to buy ebooks of works such as Brighton Rock and Our Man in Havana when they are launched digitally for the first time on October 2nd.
 

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