Open Content: The Textbook Revolution
The open-content textbook revolution has just begun. Like the open source movement, numerous critics are taking aim. Nonetheless, the open-content textbook revolution is unstoppable.
Expect some hurdles along the way.
We‘re talking, after all, about textbooks. Reliable textbooks of merit are written by academics, and academics are still not comfortable with the methodology of collaboration.
Credibility is a second key challenge. “If something is free, then it must be lousy,” said one student when hearing the news about open content textbooks. Many engineering PhD‘s are in turn discouraged from writing textbooks in this manner.
At the time of this posting, there are actually few engineering PhDs writing open-content textbooks. Far too few. Of a limited number of open-content college textbooks, most are in mathematics and physics. There are less than five quality open-content textbooks for engineering.
One fundamental goal of the Potto Project is to engage more engineering PhD ‘s to write open-content textbooks.
In time, I will post helpful guidelines for academics writing textbooks for students.
Meanwhile, I hope all of you can take advantage of what Potto offers, whether as users, site contributors, or textbook authors.