The service will provide universities and academics with a single service for both print and digital books that is independent of any one publishing house. It will integrate with universities’ virtual learning environments and learning management systems to make the journey of finding and accessing ebooks as simple as possible.
The service, which will support student bursary schemes, has been built with the input of academics and students to ensure that the service delivers the experience that users want and need. It will be launched to students as they start or return to university in September and October 2014.
“Blackwell Learning has been conceived and developed here in Britain by our technology team in Shoreditch” explained Matthew Cashmore, Blackwell’s Digital Director.
“Blackwell’s has been at the heart of academic bookselling for over 135 years – that history and knowledge means we’ve been able to build an academic research tool that is truly useful for students and academics.”
The service will deliver a consistent and enjoyable user experience across all devices online and offline, enabling students to buy, annotate texts, add highlights and create bookmarks on their existing laptops, tablets and smartphones, without the need to buy new hardware.
“This is just the first stage for Blackwell Learning,” said Cashmore.
“We know that publishers, academics and students are all very excited about the potential and we have already begun looking at additional post-launch features – the great thing about having a development team in London is that we can turn request into feature quickly and easily.”