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March 9, 2010

February Reference Notes

The February issue of Reference Notes is now available online.

Articles in this month's issue investigate the migration of textbooks to electronic format, a divisive study related to the effectiveness of teaching to different learning styles, and a socially-acceptable library-related shanty, along with much more.

  • Libraries, Trust, and Diversity of Information
  • Technology in the Classroom: Migrating to e-Textbooks
  • Cognitive Psychologists Test the Validity of Learning Styles
  • Real Learning for the Real World
  • ELM Spotlight: CAMIO┬«
  • ELM Training
  • Online Resources to Add to Your Toolbox
  • Twitter and Blogging is for Old People
  • TED: Ideas of Things to Come
  • Library Shanty
  • Announcements from the Field
  • Tutorials and Archived Webinars

Thanks for reading!

March 5, 2010

The Book as Social Contract

There's a good post from Dan Cohen, The Social Contract of Scholarly Publishing, talking about the what happens in that last steps of presenting a finished product (book) to the public.


Behavioral economists know that although the perception of value can come from the intrinsic worth of the good itself (e.g., the quality of a wine, already rather subjective), it is often influenced by many other factors, such as price and packaging (the wine bottle, how the wine is presented for tasting). These elements trigger a reaction based on stereotypes--if it's expensive and looks well-wrapped, it must be valuable. The book and article have an abundance of these value triggers from generations of use, but we are just beginning to understand equivalent value triggers online--thus the critical importance of web design, and why the logo of a trusted institution or a university press can still matter greatly, even if it appears on a website rather than a book.

Thanks to SnarkMarket.com for picking up on this great piece.