Turning a New Page: eBooks & AudioBooks (L2)

The ‘OverDrive’ Experience at Loreto Normanhurst


With eBooks achieving mainstream adoption and Audio Books enjoying something of a renaissance induced by the popularity of iPods, schools are challenged to find ways to facilitate access to these digital resources. This workshop focuses on Loreto Normanhurst’s experiences of the OverDrive download solution for eBook and Audio Book content.

At a time when eBooks are outselling hardbacks at Amazon (SMH Digital Life, 20-7-10) and the 2010 Horizon Report is predicting eBooks will significantly impact education within the next two to three years, it is evident that eBooks are changing the way students access, read, annotate and engage with text.

Meanwhile, the popularity of Apple’s iPod has facilitated a new openness to Audio Books among young readers. Moreover, research indicates that the provision of Audio Books increases reading fluency and comprehension, encourages the acquisition of new vocabulary, supports auditory learners, and offers particular benefits for struggling readers (Carbo, 1987, 1990 as cited in Montgomery, 2009, p.4; Boston Public Schools, as cited in Cothran, 2009; and Boyle et al, 2003).

In recent years, a range of download services have emerged, enabling institutions to provide easy access to these digital resources (eg. OverDrive, NetLibrary, PLR eBooks, Bolinda and Audible). After evaluating these options, Loreto Normanhurst ultimately adopted OverDrive, encouraged by its seamless management of student loans (a self-borrowing online service, connected to LMS/patron information), compatibility with most devices (eg. iPod/iPhones) and coverage of Young Adult eBook/Audio Book content.

This workshop describes the following aspects of the OverDrive service and implementation:
  • The OverDrive platform: demonstration of the self-service ‘check-out’ and download process;
  • eBook/Audio Book content: ‘School Download Library’, ‘ABC Audio Book Classroom’ & ‘Content Reserve’
  • Benefits: eg. provides a seamless download process for patrons; manages Copyright considerations pertaining to copying/loaning items; requires minimal staff intervention;
  • Obstacles: eg. implementation hurdles; international copyright limitations restrict the purchase of some content;
  • Student usage.

There will also be an opportunity to ‘test drive’ Loreto Normanhurst’s OverDrive service.



Therese Kenny
Therese_Kenny.jpgTherese Kenny is a Teacher Librarian and ICT Integrator at Loreto Normanhurst, a Year 7-12 boarding school in Sydney’s northern suburbs. Therese’s role involves teaching cooperatively across all curriculum areas, developing students’ information fluency, and facilitating staff professional development in the use of learning technologies.

A lover of (almost) ‘all things Google’, Therese’s memorable moments include a visit to Sydney’s ‘Googleplex’. A self-confessed garden assassin with a penchant for cooking, her goals in life also include mastering her Nonna-in-law’s Ricotta Cannoli recipe, successfully growing any kind of vegetable, and participating in the Google Teacher Academy. If you can help with any of the above, Therese would love to hear from you :)cheap student desks for homesurgery games online for teenagerssurgery games online for teenagerssurgery games c section