Session S55b (Tuesday, 5:15pm, Willaman Gateway)

P596: The role of textbooks: Does the course content or faculty member matter?

Jordyn Betz, Thomas Pentecost, Lacey Hamilton (Grand Valley State University, USA)

The role of the textbook in college chemistry courses can be evaluated from two perspectives: How do students use the chemistry textbook and how do chemistry professors integrate the textbook into the course?  It is also reasonable to think that the role played by the textbook might differ because of the course content. To determine the role the textbook played for faculty and students in general chemistry and organic chemistry, a semi-structured interview protocol was developed and refined by both researchers. Faculty were interviewed by one researcher and students by the other. Each group of interviews, faculty or student, were analyzed and themes emerged. A set of common themes were identified and used to analyze the pooled data. Similarities and differences between faculty and students perceptions of the role of the textbook and the role of the textbook in different courses have been identified. It is hoped that these results will help faculty determine if the money spent on textbooks is worth the investment.

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