Why It’s So Hard to Get Students to Read the Textbook, and What Happens When They Do

This Post Has 5 Comments

  1. Santiago

    Newer textbooks are only filled with the same thing that older textbooks already have. I think its complete bullshit how expensive they are. Its all about the money, and most of them add a bunch of unnecessary information only to make the book seem "professional". Nearly all college students don't care, they only want to pass the class. All these general education classes are a waste of time, only to supply more careers for professors and to make more money for universities. Honestly, do colleges really believe that students are going to remember at least 20% of what they learned in general education classes. I can almost guarantee college students forget about 90% of everything they "learned" in all general ed classes.

  2. tiare

    we are in the 21st century and yes students need to know how to read but when you are in high school like me you just get assigned pages to read and write notes on it. so are you telling me instead of people making it easier and saying what parts are more important, teachers are going to spend mounds of money on textbooks for us to read when teachers know that textbooks are way to long and boring and could be simplified some other way. student do not want to read textbooks because they are not interesting and therefore they wont read. teachers always think if you raise the points on the reading that students would actually do them. me personally wouldn't read because it is to hard to stay in my room for 2 hours doing notes that could have been simplified by the teacher creating those power points.

  3. Jerry ODell

    I taught statistics for 31 years, and the answer is simple. If you dont read page 1, you won't understand page 2.
    This sequence goes on until you are completely lost by page 5 (unless you get a really meaningless book) —
    say there's a good idea. Write books with no meaning , and you'll make a fortune.
    The sad part is simply that some people can't understand math. Or won't do any work.

    I had to deal with this problem for 31 years. The administration loves the money, tho jwo

    1. Mom knows best

      two thumbs up!!!!

  4. bmj

    I have a different view — they are boring because they are just plain badly written. Many use a poor, overly wordy writing style, yes especially statistics textbooks, that take simple concepts and hid them behind barricades of obscure writing. This is an example from my daughters textbook tonight (and what brought me to this site):

    "In this way the quantitative content caught in the dot product formalism comes from the analogical multiplication that arises by projecting one vector onto another."

    What the heck does that even mean? OK, I know because I've been a practicing physicist for 30 years, but I knew before reading that sentence. But if I were a student reading that passage, I'd want to throw the book into the lake and run screaming into the dark.

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