eBooks: A Nerd's Perspective

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Rena Ansbacher
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There is no denying it, I am pretty much the nerdiest nerd you will ever know. I love books. Really, I LOVE all of them. I love hardcover books. I love soft cover books. I now love electronic books, but I didn’t at first.  Contrary to many of my millennial counterparts, I didn’t jump on the “digital eBook craze” right away. In fact, for the longest time I actually preferred physical books over eBooks – until I came across a tool that saved my grade.

Physical books might sometimes be heavy or difficult to lug around, especially before a big exam, but I absolutely enjoy the feeling of having a tangible book in my hands! My hesitation towards trying eBooks included that physical books don’t need an internet connection or an additional access code to view them – which means I can view them anytime or anywhere.  

However, there are some significant disadvantages that may far outweigh the advantages of physical books. For example, physical textbooks get out of date. I have purchased the wrong edition of a textbook for an important class too many times to count!

There is a big advantage towards electronic books that I recently discovered –  Pearson eBooks usually include MyLabs. I cannot express how amazing MyLab is! Whenever available, I take full advantage of all the great things MyLab has to offer. Even when my class does not use a Pearson textbook, I often buy access to a similar book related to the same subject that offers MyLab. I like to utilize the built in study materials such as Dynamic Study models that adjust my studying towards subjects that need the most attention!

MyLab offers index cards that are amazingly accurate and provide me the focus I need to perform well on my homework assignments and exams. There is also a proliferation of practice quizzes and practice homework assignments that are spot-on to my needs. What is perhaps my favorite feature would have to be how amazing MyLab is at gauging where my trouble areas lie and providing me with more questions in those areas to help me understand them better through more repetition. This is in contrast to other products that simply ask the same questions over and over again hoping that something will click. Thanks to MyLab, I was able to pass all my classes with flying colors.

Despite my hesitation towards jumping onto the eBook bandwagon, I must admit now that my nerdy self is an eBook fanatic because of the additional features. You cannot get Dynamic flashcards or practice quizzes that adapt to your needs in a printed hardcopy version of a textbook. So despite not having the “feel” of crisp pages beneath my fingertips, I am more than willing to trade it for tools that will better my grade and my understanding of the subject material.