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Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by hajime, Oct 8, 2017.
When learning a new subject, do you prefer to learn from a real book or its electronic version? Why?
Me too. Because I can flip back and forth and skip around, which I may need to do more of in order to learn unfamiliar material. It's just so much easier to do that with a printed book.
But past that, with material that I already know more about, I tend to prefer ebooks as I get older because I can adjust the font size, background tint, brightness etc. to help out my aging eyes. Most fiction I now prefer to read in ebook format.
Personally, I far prefer reading from a printed source, especially if it is something that I wish to bury myself in, or think closely about.
The actual act of reading seems too occur differently online and with print - you devote more attention to the printed page. However, I will agree with @LizKat: I am more indulgent with reading fiction online, although I still prefer even that as a hard copy; my brother has been trying to persuade me of the joys of a Kindle, but I confess that I am far from converted.
Also, as a former editor, I must say that I always found it far easier to spot errors on a hard copy than electronically where error escape my scrutiny - which is why, even now, I will insist on printing out most important documents.
Last couple of years, I've moved completely from paper to digital. I prefer to import a pdf into iBooks. You can quickly scan backwards and forwards, change the brightness, search. Basically, in every way ( in my mind ) it is better. I've recently taken to scanning physical copies of books I've had sitting on the shelf and loading them up on the IPP10.5. It's easy to read a chapter when you have a few minutes. Easy to refer back to something. Easy to carry 10+ books.
Side benefit, I can read at night, right before going to bed, without a night light.
P.S. IMHO iBooks has the best reading experience.
Both. Most depends on the subject and structure of the books. It also depends on the depth I want to learn the subject.
I am reading two books on constitutional law and they’re both on paper. I am also reading one book on sociology and one on criminal justice, they’re digital.
Why? What so special about iBooks compared with other pdf reader/annotator?
I've also switched completely to digital. I can annotate and highlight, something I hated doing TO a physical paper book. I always felt like I was defacing a book.
These days we can download lots of books freely easily. It is good for the wallet but bad for learning. If we download the pdf of books and print them out using color laser printer, it might cost more than buying the books from Amazon (usually I don't buy second hands partly due to OCD). So, after all these years, I still have to pay thousand of dollars on books?
My former home was like a library. I had more books on STEM than some local libraries.
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Few years ago, I annotated lots of notes on my Galaxy Note PRO 12.2. Problem with the device and I lost everything.
I guess if it is for serious learning, we go for printed version. For reference, we go for electronic version. Am I right?
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Not necessarily. There's not a big difference, is there?
I actually find that a physical book aids in my recall of facts and figures. Often I'll recall something with reference to the page it was on---not necessarily by the page number but by what I remember being laid out on that and surrounding pages. However, I find that information I read on electronic documents doesn't integrate in the same way for me.
Learning seems to be a very physical experience for me. This is also why I don't take electronic notes.
Electronic. My moleman eyes can't compare to y'all regular folks. I want LARGE text.
IIRC, Scientific American had an article that indicated that physical books were better than electronic for learning. Likewise, it is better to take handwritten notes than type them into a laptop.
I think there are pros and cons to both formats. For example as LizKat mentioned there are navigation methods available in a book, like flipping through pages, that aren't really replicated in an eBook.
However in an eBook you can do a keyword search to quickly find every instance of a word or phrase, a feat which cannot be replicated in a book. Some eBooks also contain additional embedded content that the physical book will not or cannot have, such as author's notes and multimedia.
iBooks allows quick navigation by tapping and dragging across thumbnails at the bottom of the screen. The pinch/zoom seems smoothest. The automatic night color shift is not harsh on the eyes in a dark room. The split screen. iBooks stays out of the way while reading. Highlighting and Markup is quick and easy.
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They used subjects that had grown up learning from a book. Not really a fair assessment. I would argue that I now learn better with digital vs printed.
I much prefer printed texts. Only problem is that uni and professional texts are so expensive and the build quality is horrendous. I think one of out the last fifteen texts I've purchased had a Smyth sewn binding and it was a used one that was printed in the late eighties.
While I prefer printed information, I believe it is do more to my experiences and past learning habits. When I was learning and teaching the printed material is what was available. For my Grandson, the opposite is true. He has just entered 4th grade. From this point on in his public education he will be provided with an electronic device (currently an iPad) which will contain his books, assignments and email instructions from his teachers.
I believe that you personally learn better with digital vs printed. I'm sure many others do as well. Everyone is different.
However, to your first point, I seem to remember in the article that I read that children were included in the study.
In any case, one of the biggest problems with digital media learning is that the student is distracted and spends about 40% of "study time" on applications not related to school work. I don't understand how people growing up with digital media are going to be immune to this. In a textbook you don't get popup notifications and you can't ALT-TAB to Minesweeper and Facebook.
As for note taking, the study found that people using laptops are able to write much more quickly and so tended to write what the professor said almost verbatim. Having accurate/verbatim notes sounds great at first glance, but in reality it allows people to revert to simple transcribing, which is mentally easy. Pencil and paper note-takers are much slower and thus are forced to write notes using some form of abbreviation. That means there is a cognitive step requiring understanding of the material in order to translate it into a shorter form that will be meaningful later. This extra cognitive step helps reinforce the material.
I don't see how people growing up with laptops are going to be immune to losing out from that missing extra cognitive step. If anything, growing up able to naturally type will make it even easier to mentally "check out" while transcribing.
e-book that's for sure.... but i do miss the printed stuff
Not everything is in digital form, and some of it may never be... Plus, if you already have the book, buying it again just because its technology doesn't make sense. (except when printed version will degrade, fall apart etc..)
For reference-type material, I definitely prefer print when learning, as you can easily flip between pages, keep a finger or bookmark in there to mark your place, add sticky notes/flags, etc. Once I already know most of my way around a topic and just want to look up a couple of minor things then electronic is often easier, especially when set up correctly with clickable links everywhere.
Printed. My screen real estate isn't enough for learning Windows Word and Excel 2016, so it's helpful to be able to crack open my office for dummies book and still work comfortably.
As long as books, etc. are printed that will be my preferred way to read, especially if I have to learn something.