Times change ... and constraints remain

(previous section) All new, all beautiful? Not always. Teachers and publishers are gradually learning to integrate the reality imposed by the advent of digital textbooks. “Mariners who […]

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All new, all beautiful? Not always. Teachers and publishers are gradually learning to integrate the reality imposed by the advent of digital textbooks.

"Browsers that are not up to date, firewalls that have not been downloaded, computers whose unregistered content is deleted in the evening and sites that are blocked are all brakes on the development of digital books" , regrets Virginie Chatard.

When asked about the problems she encountered, it was not these aspects that Marie-Josée Lavoie tackled straight away, but the lack of customer service once the purchases had been made. “We were lacking codes and functional tips. We were unable to use the material and, alas, it came without an instruction manual for this important information. There was a lack of follow-up and it was a long time before we were called back. My colleague almost threw it all out the window ”.

However, the editors assure to have foreseen the blow. "If there is the slightest technical problem, the equipment is quickly relegated to oblivion," confirms Caroline Viel de Modulo. Teacher training is therefore important. Our sales teams are eager to offer workshops that are both educational and technical so that the teacher can find each other ”. ERPI holds the same speech. “We answer questions online and our representatives are all well trained to provide support as needed. The transition to the digital age requires investments of time and money in schools so that teachers take ownership of the materials.

Compatibility with different tables is also a problem. The Beta and VHS war is constantly mentioned to illustrate the competition between the two biggest brands of interactive whiteboards. How do you produce digital content that will be read by the variety of TBI software available on the market?

Each of the publishing houses has opted for its own solution to get around this problem. Modulo serves Quebec customers, but also has a market outside Quebec. As these two clienteles do not use the same brand of TBI, they had to ensure that their equipment was compatible for the two technologies. They have chosen to develop their hardware for the SMART platform, which can be imported by the ActivInspire software.

For his part, Grand Duke also chose to serve teachers on SmartBoard and ActivBoard, but he did it differently. Its teaching team develops each of its TBI capsules twice, one for each of these two technologies.

“What do we choose today to survive tomorrow ?, asks Vivianne Chénier. HTML5 motivated the choice of ERPI. There is everything in the schools ”. Indeed, all our content, like those of the Numérik collection can be viewed on any IWB because they are accessible using any computer with an Internet connection, whether MAC or PC using a recent browser such as Google Chrome, Firefox and Safari. What's more, this format is compatible with portable technologies such as tablets, digital music players and smartphones.

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About the Author

Julie Beaupré
Julie beaupre
Julie is a primary ICT educational advisor and RÉCIT resource person at the Commission scolaire des Affluents. Also, blogger here and the.

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