Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Update Guide

How do you know where the changes are when your A&P textbook is revised?

How many times have you flipped through a chapter in a new edition and thought, "this looks pretty much the same as in the last edition"—only to have a student later point out that a term has changed, an image revised, or a section added?

Yeah, me too!

So that's why I've started keeping a log of all the changes I make globally and as I revise each chapter for a new edition.  This log—called a Conversion/Update Guide—is available to instructors.  Starting with the upcoming 9th edition of Anatomy & Physiology, teachers can log into the Instructor Resources at Evolve to access this handy guide.

For example, in a recent post I outlined a few improvements to a newly minted chapter devoted to homeostasis. When you start using the new edition of Anatomy & Physiology, you may wonder how this was split out (chunked) from the larger chapter in the previous edition and exactly what changes were made. That is, you want to know what specifically will impact your teaching.

With the new update guide, you'll be able to see what changes were made and you can then easily determine which, if any, have a practical impact on your course.  Perhaps you need to change a chapter number, or maybe provide an alternate term, or possibly add a new image to your PowerPoint presentation.

I always wanted to have something like this when I was teaching other courses and a new edition of the textbook came out.  Even when I found the changes on my own (or more likely, when a student pointed out a conflict between what I told them was in the book and what was actually in the book), I didn't always understand why those changes were made.

So I created the update guide so you can not only see what revisions were made, but also a brief note about the rationale for the changes.

My plan is to also share some additional background and rationales for specific updates and textbook features here in this blog, where I have a bit more space to fully explain them.  Please consider subscribing by email so you don't miss any new posts!  Just fill out the brief SUBSCRIPTION FORM.

Cartoon:adapted from Raúl Ruano Ruiz
Photo: K Patton

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