Differences in the Requirements of Digital and Printed Mathematics Textbooks: Focus on Geometry Chapters
Textbooks have always played an important role in mathematics education. Textbook tasks are widely used by students, so it is important to examine their requirements in order to identify the opportunities students have to learn mathematics. Publishers now produce both printed and digital versions of textbooks. While the requirements of the tasks in printed textbooks have been well examined all over the world, the tasks in digital textbooks are yet to be analysed and systematically developed. The research presented in this paper encompasses the analysis and comparison of the tasks in the printed and digital versions of the same mathematics textbook set. The examined set covers Grades 1 to 4 of primary education in Croatia. The aim was to find what task requirements are predominant in the printed and the digital textbooks, and to determine whether these textbook versions provide a wide variety of task features. In addition, the features and capacities typical of digital tasks, such as interactivity and dynamics, are examined. These task features are particularly important in geometry education for comprehending visual and dynamic geometrical objects and relations. The results show that both the printed and the digital textbook tasks have traditional requirements, with an emphasis on closed answer forms. Moreover, the new opportunities afforded by digital tasks are not realised. These findings reveal the potential of digital tasks as a new area to be explored and developed.
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