District Administration June 2017 - 15

SPONSORED CONTENT

Herb Miller,
Director of Education,
OverDrive Education

Delivering e-books and audiobooks effectively
-and efficiently-to students and teachers
Easy access to a wide variety of digital content drives personalized learning

How do you build a digital reading platform that is easy
for both students and teachers to use?
There are four main pillars to effective digital content
implementation. One, you have to be easily able to get the
top content that any student or teacher may be looking
for. Two, it has to be easy to access and simple to use
in the digital reading platform on any device and not
require significant amounts of professional development
and training. Three, there's the need for some kind of
independent expert advice around selecting the content,
as opposed to relying on one publisher versus another.
Teachers and curriculum teams often don't have the time
or the expertise to know and compare all the new releases
and format options. Finally, the content has to be costeffective over the long term.
What are the different models for content acquisition?
It comes down to institutional versus retail. The
institutional model is school systems buying content
centrally and then efficiently moving it to the right student,
at the right time. In a retail model, you're buying content
only for a specific student. That student can use it only
on their respective digital device. When that student
leaves the school, the school will soon need to repurchase
that content. The institutional model is much more costeffective over the long term.
Talk about flexible access models, since budget is always
a concern with schools.
The No. 1 priority that everyone should be looking at is the
usage of content invested in. We have to make sure that
content is going efficiently to the right student at the right
time. Otherwise, that content will be bought for one school
and then just sit there, when it could be used by a student
at another school. If we want to get more usage from
content, we have to be able to move resources across
schools, across districts or even, potentially, statewide.

We're seeing much more opportunity for school systems
to pool funds to get access to more content.
What kind of impact can an integrated multimedia
program have on English language arts (ELA)?
Teachers tell us all the time that when students can find
the content the way they want it, they're much more likely
to come to class having read the book. Students want
to use their smartphone and other devices, and ELA has
been one of the most impactful areas. The average ninthgrader isn't as excited to read in print as they are digitally.
They can be reading on their smartphone, Chromebook or
iPad with 24/7 access anytime, anywhere. They can also
utilize their smartphone for listening to audiobooks. Think
about the earbuds in students' ears, listening to something
of quality.
What are the benefits of e-books and audiobooks for
English language learners, Hi-Lo readers and reading per
lexile level?
One of the key benefits of e-books and digital audiobooks
is the easy access to a much larger selection of content.
Students who have access to a wide variety of content
that meets their specific needs can get much more
personalized learning. Students can search for e-books
and audiobooks within a digital reading platform based
on their lexile level. This feature appeals to ELL students
who appreciate the ability to search for nonfiction English
e-books that meet their reading level, which likely does not
match their grade level. In addition, privacy is much easier
to preserve when using digital materials (for example,
keeping private the Hi-Lo reader's book jacket).

For more information, visit overdrive.com/schools
View, comment, share this story online at DAmag.me/ode


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of District Administration June 2017

District Administration June 2017 - Cover1
District Administration June 2017 - Cover2
District Administration June 2017 - 1
District Administration June 2017 - 2
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District Administration June 2017 - Cover3
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