eBook assignments

While the creation of an eBook is not usually a digital assignment in and of itself, digital formats such as EPUB and the ubiquity of digital reading devices make the creation of an eBook an attractive way to encapsulate a semester’s worth of work resulting in a tangible product. An eBook project might take the form of an anthology of student writings that explores a particular topic, or it could contain a curated collection of existing literature with a well-researched essay-­length introduction that gives context and explanations of the choices made. A group of students could act as an editorial board.

Assignment considerations

  • Students can frame the anthology by including an extensive introduction and tease out the themes that appear throughout. Hyperlinked terms that connect to an appendix at the end can further emphasize these themes.
  • If students are acting as editors, they can write biographies of the authors whose work is represented in the collection of texts and the authors’ impact on a particular genre, field, theory, etc.
  • If students are organizing an anthology of their own essays, they can think concertedly about the order of the texts, what the larger goal of this collection is, and they can include a concluding statement that articulates what the reader has gained from the work as a whole.
  • Although creating an eBook involves exporting a complete word document into an EPUB format, this process can provide insight into the electronic publication process. For instance, students can see the impact of format, readability, and a consistently applied style guide on a book that is meant to be experienced on an eReader.
Student preparation

Creating an eBook requires little technical knowledge but can be time-consuming if the source document is not properly constructed and organized. The preparation of materials is normally done in Microsoft Word or other text editors and then converted to an eBook format.

Possible Tools
  • Calibre
    The following text editing programs can export to the EPUB format: Apple Pages, Scrivener, Google Docs, LibreOffice
Posted by May 10, 2021