E-Book versus Printed Materials: Preferences of University Students


Reading habits, accessing resources, and material preferences change rapidly in a digital world. University students, as digital natives, are accessing countless resources, from lecture notes to research papers electronically. The change of reading habits with a great scale has led to differentiation on accessibility of resources, archiving them and usage of related technologies. The purpose of this study is to examine the e-book usage preferences versus printed material along with reading habits in a context of different variables. Additionally, different uses of e-books in a variety of faculties have been the focus of this study. The participants comprised of 222 students, studying in 36 different universities across Turkey. A questionnaire was developed specifically for the study. The questionnaire consisted of three parts: Printed book reading habits, e-book reading habits (methods of reaching e-books, aim of usage etc.), and technological knowledge (e-book related tools and file formats etc.). According to the results of study, approximately 68% of university students stated that they read one book in a week and 62% indicated that they are e-book readers. Moreover, there was a significant relationship between social environment and reading habits of students. University students put forward accessibility advantage (68%) of e-book and stated that they mostly read e-book for research (81%). E-book format which is most commonly preferred among students is Portable Document Format (pdf) (73%), while the computer is the most commonly used e-book medium (60%).