Content Delivery - eText

Overview | Instructional Use | Tips | Shortcomings | Technology required | Resources

In broad terms, eText (or electronic text) refers to digitally enhanced textbooks. Some of these enhancements include:

  • Inclusion of a variety of rich media such as high quality images, graphics, animations, audio, and video.
  • Ability to highlight sentences and add notes to any section of a page.
  • Ability to search words in the entire book.
  • Easy and intuitive navigation.
  • Ability to bookmark multiple pages.
  • Ability for students to share notes among them and also with the instructor.
  • Ability to access the content from most portable devices such as phones and tablets.
At Indiana University, eTexts are integrated into Oncourse through Courseload.



Portability. Students no longer need to carry heavy textbooks with them all of the time. With eTexts, students can access the content of multiple textbooks at any time right from the palm of their hands through a cell phone or a tablet device.

Collaborative studying. Not only students can add their digital personal notes to any page, but they can also share their notes with other students allowing for a more collaborative and engaging way to study and learn.

Making use of alternative media channels. Some textbooks include rich media elements such as high quality graphics, animations or video.

Affordable. While many students don't buy textbooks due to their high cost, the IU's eText approach aims at reducing the cost for each student.

  • Become familiar with the features offered by eTexts so you can explore ways in which these features can promote learning and content mastery in your students. You can try Courseload, the IU's eTextbook reader, by following the steps located at

  • It is convenient to use the "Upload Content" feature to share Word documents and PDF files with your students. All uploaded material will be converted to eText format so students can apply tools such as highlighting and adding personal notes.


Limited eText Publishers. Even though several well-known publishers such as Mc Graw Hill, John Wiley & Sons, and Harvard Business are already producing eTextbooks, not all of the textbooks are in eText format. If you are interested in using eTexts but you are not sure whether there is already a digital format of the textbook you are using, contact to inquire about it.

Browser compatibility. While the technology used by eTexts is supported across multiple portable devices and computers, not all of the browsers have full support of it. This issue could be easily solved by having students updating their browsers to the latest versions which are available for free.



To use eTexts, students need:

  • Any computer or portable device with Internet connection

  • An Internet browser with HTML5 support (any browser's latest version will support it)


iPhone with eText