e-textbooks in/for Teaching and Learning Mathematics: A Disruptive and Potentially Transformative Educational Technology

Abstract : The interest for textbook research in mathematics education is now growing (Fan, Zhu & Miao 2013); it adresses new issues, and enlightens new roles for the textbook, not only a tool for students and teachers, but also an interface between policy and practice (Pepin, Gueudet & Trouche 2013). At the same time, more and more digital resources are available for teachers, in particular e-textbooks; these resources yield deep evolutions in the learning, teaching, and professional development processes, which require new research perspectives (Gueudet, Pepin & Trouche 2012). We present here a synthesis of research results already obtained about e-textbooks, and analyse the crucial evolutions attached to its use – evolutions in the teaching and learning processes, but also evolutions in the concepts of quality and coherence, central for the design of the e-textbooks, and naturally for research. We first attempt to clarify what can, or cannot be considered as an e-textbook; and which are the specific features of such a textbook: its structure, its content etc. We identify deep evolutions, likely to lead to new roles for these resources, compared with traditional textbooks (Chazan & Yerushalmy 2013). The design processes of e-textbook also have specific features (Sabra & Trouche 2011), which can lead to distinguish different e-textbooks categories: those written by experts, keeping a traditional view of authorship, and those written by an open educational community. We then focus on the use of e-textbooks by students, by teachers, and on the students-teachers interactions mediated by e-textbooks. The interactive features of the e-textbooks impacts the students mathematical work, and permits an active involvement of the students in the organisation of their learning with the book (Yerushalmi 2013). Similarly, the teachers can be active users of e-textbooks, that they use as providing different “bricks” as ingerdient in the design of their teaching (Gueudet, Pepin & Trouche 2013). These deep evolutions invite to re-think the associated notions of quality and coherence. What does mathematical coherence mean, if the textbook offers a set of elements, to be used by the teacher? We argue here that, in this context, the notion of quality must be seen as different kinds of connections: connections between different mathematical topics, between old and new knowledge, between activities; connections between the e-textbook and other resources, within structured resources systems of the teachers; but also connections between the users and the authors of the textbook. In this chapter, we discuss these issues, drawing on several research works concerning mathematics at secondary school in different countries and cultures.
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Contributor : Ghislaine Gueudet <>
Submitted on : Thursday, October 1, 2015 - 10:44:44 AM
Last modification on : Thursday, May 9, 2019 - 9:58:32 AM


  • HAL Id : hal-01207678, version 1


Birgit Pepin, Ghislaine Gueudet, Michal Yerushalmy, Luc Trouche, Daniel Chazan. e-textbooks in/for Teaching and Learning Mathematics: A Disruptive and Potentially Transformative Educational Technology. L. English, & D Kirshner. Handbook of International Research in Mathematics Education. Third edition., New York: Taylor & Francis, pp.636-661, 2015. ⟨hal-01207678⟩



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