Engage - eText Best Practices (UW-Madison)
The Unizin Engage tool will be used for the Spring 2018 UW-Madison eText pilot. If you are not participating in the pilot or taking a class in the pilot you will not have access to Engage. For more information on the pilot please see the Educational Innovation web page.
This document is for UW-Madison instructors participating in the Spring 2018 eText pilot.
These best practices and much of our other documentation on Engage was shared by Indiana University. Many thanks to IU! We hope to further develop UW-Madison best practices by working with eText pilot participants.
- If this is your first term using an eText, know there can be some transitional challenges. Please let the eText pilot staff know how we may assist you in preparing for using eTexts by e-mailing email@example.com.
- Positive student perceptions of eTexts, and the resulting academic engagement and success, are predicated by instructor ability to explain and/or demonstrate a clear and thoughtful decision to use Engage eTexts instead of traditional paper materials. In practice this requires instructor understanding of the concept of eTexts, as well as the key features eTexts provide.
- Positive student perceptions are also greatly enhanced by a proactive approach to introducing eTexts to students. Please consider adding a statement about the use of eTexts or Digital Learning Tools (DLT) to your syllabus and posting it as an announcement to your students 1-2 weeks before the first day of class. Example language on the use of Engage is available here.
- Advance instructor access, experience, and practice with Engage makes a big difference. View the Engage help menu (for instructors) to learn about the basics of navigating in and using the basic features of the Engage platform.
- Take advantage of the Engage features allowing you to ‘enhance’ the text.
- Highlight, annotate, add study tips, insert links to external materials.
- Interact and collaborate in the text.
- Promote early engagement in the text (and practice navigating in Engage). Examples may include
- Requiring students to highlight the first paragraph of the first chapter before the first day of the term.
- Requiring students to submit discussion questions via the eText prior to each class if you wish to utilize the question feature. Let your students know if you plan to respond to questions or not from Engage.
- Be open to discussing why you chose to utilize eTexts with your students.
- Promote the key features your students may not know or understand.
- Share the University interest in providing well-below market cost materials and ease of access for all students in a class.
- If students wish to discuss opting-out of UW-Madison eTexts and the related fees:
- Help students understand the academic benefits of eTexts from your perspective.
- Help students understand the academic risks of opting out of the eText in your class.
- If you are using a publisher Digital Learning Tool (DLT) like Cengage MindTap or Pearson MyLab and Mastering be sure to inform your students how the DLT will be used in your course. If students have support questions related to use of the DLT they can be referred to the vendor for support. More information on where to go for vendor support can be found here.
- Remember we have arrangements in place with the publishers and the McBurney Disability Resource center to create alternate versions of texts for those students who require accommodations. For more information see Engage - Unizin Engage Accessibility (UW-Madison)