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Publishers answering the call for digital textbooks

Many digital textbook choices exist, but the quality varies widely.

(Editor’s note: This is Part 1 of a two-part series on digital textbooks. Part 2, which will run next month, will focus on schools’ use of digital texts in the classroom.)

The call for U.S. schools to move toward digital textbooks within the next five years has some education officials pondering their options. Publishers, meanwhile, are starting to answer the call.

Last year, U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan urged the nation’s schools to opt for digital textbooks as quickly as possible. “Over the next few years, textbooks should be obsolete,” he said during a National Press Club address in October. “The world is changing. This has to be where we go as a country.”

But a number of challenges to reaching this goal exist—including finding and evaluating high-quality digital texts. To help school leaders with this challenge, here’s a closer look at the current digital textbook market for K-12 schools.

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