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Engage - Engage Terminology [UW-Madison]

A list of terms defined for anyone using Engage at UW-Madison.

Analytics Tool

The Engage eReader provides built-in analytics, offering insight into who’s reading and interacting with the course content. The Analytics Tool is only available to the instructor of record. More information about this tool can be found here.


The UW-Madison Learning Management System (LMS) from which the Engage software is accessed with one click.

Digital Learning Tool (DLT)

All other non-text digital/electronic learning materials (including publisher's online learning and study environments, game simulations, online courses, and other interactive materials). DLTs are hosted on the publisher's websites and are not accessed through the Engage platform. Many DLTs are usually priced at 25-35% off of the publisher's list price. Most of them integrate into Canvas with a single-sign-on (SSO) feature for students (meaning no access code is required). Examples of DLTs include Cengage MindTap, Pearson's MyLab and Mastering series, and Pearson Revel.

Most DLT access lasts for one semester, though longer (typically one year) can be purchased. Some publishers provide unlimited access for a separate fee (e.g., Cengage Unlimited) - this cannot be ordered for students through the Order Tool, but students can purchase it from publishers directly. Students will need to opt-out of their course’s DLT to avoid paying for the content twice. Publishers can provide more information on how unlimited access works with Engage.

Digital Materials

Digital materials, in the context of Engage, include eTexts and publisher tools (DLTs) that can be accessed via electronic devices such as computers or smartphones. Information presented and interacted with in various digital formats (e.g., hypertext, images, videos, etc.).


A digitized version of a traditional paper textbook, journal, article, etc. eTexts are presented on the Engage e-reading platform. The cost is typically 40-80% off of the publisher's print list price.

Students retain access to all eTexts they’ve purchased for the duration of their time as a student at UW-Madison.

Engage eReader (RedShelf)

The e-reading platform, onto which Unizin staff load eTexts (text-based) titles adopted by instructors. The Engage eReader includes a suite of studying/learning features and encourages student/instructor engagement in the text. UW-Madison accesses Engage eTexts via Canvas. For more information on reading Engage eTexts via Canvas, please see Engage - Reading eTexts on Engage [UW-Madison].

Unizin Engage’s eReader is powered by RedShelf.

Engage's Ordering Process

Instructors and curricular reps (course coordinators) can order eTexts and DLTs during a specific Ordering Period through the Order Tool. eTexts and DLTs will become available within Canvas before the first day of the semester for instructors, and either on or before the first day for students. Information about the ordering process can be found here: Engage - Ordering eTexts/publisher Digital Learning Tools (DLTs) with the Order Tool.


Entitlements track student purchases and duration of access for digital materials. If an eText was purchased in a previous course, the student will not be charged for that eText again, unless a new edition is used (students can still opt-out and access the previous edition, though should discuss this with their instructors first). Students can view their previous purchases through the “Purchase History” feature.

Inclusive Access (IA)

A textbook sales model that includes the cost of a course’s selected digital materials (which include eTexts and DLTs) into students’ tuition bills. Content is made available on or before the first day of class through a university’s Learning Management System (LMS), such as Canvas. There are various models for IA programs, however, UW-Madison’s IA program is delivered through Unizin’s Engage platform.

Order Tool

The Order Tool enables instructors and course coordinators to place orders for digital course materials for upcoming academic terms during designated Ordering Periods. The associated catalog is available year-round for browsing. It also enables students to opt-out of digital materials during designated Student Choice periods. More information on the Order Tool can be found in this document.


The process by which students must indicate that they do not wish to utilize the eText (and digital learning tool, if applicable) chosen by their instructor. See Engage - Opt-out Considerations and Guidelines for more information, including how to opt-out. Once a student has opted out, the fee is waived or refunded. All opt-outs must occur during the designated Student Choice period.


The set of permissions granted to a user within the Order Tool. These include Student, Instructor, Course Coordinator, and Program Administrator. Please see this document for more details on the four roles granted to users (also called a profile, or user profile).

Student Choice Period

Students can opt-out of using digital materials during designated Student Choice periods. At the close of this period, the choices are final. Opt-outs can be accessed through the Order Tool. See “Opt-Out” above for more information.


The university consortium that owns the Engage software (which includes the Order Tool and Engage). UW-Madison joined the Unizin consortium in September 2014. Unizin brokers agreements with publishers to discount their catalogs for institutional use. They also provide consortium members the Unizin Data Platform.

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OwnerLearn@UW MadisonGroupLearn@UW-Madison
Created2017-10-31 11:46:32Updated2024-04-17 15:30:07
SitesDoIT Help Desk, Learn@UW-Madison
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