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20MM Foundation Launches Nation's First Web 2.0 Enhanced Open Source eTextbook - Kno Lends its Education Platform to Open Content Initiative

  (October 06, 2011)

Sacramento, Calif. (PRWEB) October 06, 2011

The 20 Million Minds Foundation (20MM Foundation) announced a new digitally enhanced etextbook for college students based on open content. The non-profit has set its sight on producing open source etextbooks for the top 25 courses taken by undergraduates in the nation, with general statistics being one of largest of such courses.

Starting today, Collaborative Statistics 2nd Edition is now available and provides students with an interactive experience using videos, applets, graphics, interactive exercises, and a variety of navigation and study features. This version is available at kno.com for the web browser on Windows and Apple Mac based systems and the Apple iPad tablet.

This new offering is designed for college students to improve their learning experience, results and significantly lower the textbook cost, said Dean Florez, President of 20MM Foundation. This digitally enhanced etextbook provides a vision of what is now possible for a new generation of open content and authors."


Collaborative Statistics, 2nd Edition, was written and updated by Barbara Illowsky and Susan Dean, faculty members at De Anza College in Cupertino, California. This textbook is intended for introductory statistics courses taken by students at two- and four-year colleges who are majoring in fields other than math or engineering. It is now available in multiple versions including a free PDF for all students and a new Enhanced Digital version. Collaborative Statistics was originally published by Connexions at http://cnx.org/content/col10522/1.39/.

The reason that I am involved in this project is that I believe this enhanced version goes well beyond a flat pdf to increase student learning. We already have a free textbook. Now, I want to improve the learning experience by offering students what I consider a Web 2.0 experience, said Barbara Illowsky, Author and Professor of Mathematics, DeAnza College.

In California community colleges alone, over 120,000 students every year take the general statistics course. With an average new book price of over $150 dollars, students in this system pay anywhere close to $10 to $18 million dollars per year on this basic statistics course alone. With the new enhanced digital offering, students will experience a free PDF for the course or the enhanced version under $20 dollars for the semester.

"One of the criticisms leveled at open textbooks is that the quality somehow suffers because they do not have the imprimatur of the commercial publishers. After today, we will no longer view open source books the same way. Today our collaboration with Kno will showcase future open source books with Web 2.0 capabilities able to outperform commercial publications at every level," said Florez.

Today marks the first merger between a for-profit giant, Kno, and non-profit, 20MM, to actually deliver an open source book through a vibrant leading edge commercial platform, offering faculty another quality choice.

The opportunity to partner with Kno on this project allowed us to leverage their education platform, application and distribution capability to create a truly amazing etextbook based on existing open content, said Dean Florez, a past Senate Majority Leader in California. He added, Knos capabilities allowed us to complete this project in a rapid timeframe and make it available to students this fall in a number of California Community Colleges and colleges nationally. Our overall target is aimed at massive adoption by faculty by spring of 2012."

Availability
Collaborative Statistics, Enhanced Digital 2nd Edition
ISBN: 9780983804901
Price: Free when download at https://www.kno.com/book/details/productId/txt9780983804905
Available Versions for: Web browser on Windows and Apple Mac based systems and the Apple iPad

Collaborative Statistics is also available free in pdf and Connexions versions. Students have the choice of using the enhanced digital version available at Kno.com or the pdf version available at Connexions site or the hard copy available for purchase. The hard copy will have a red cover and be available from QOOP: ISBN: 978-0-615-50867-2.

About 20 Million Minds Foundation
20MM Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to greatly reducing textbook costs. Headed by past California Senate Majority Leader Dean Florez, the foundation is currently leveraging leading edge technologies to create more affordable, engaging, and effective educational materials for college students throughout the nation. 20MM has currently funded, along with its working partners at both the Hewlett Foundation and Gates Foundation, a series of open source books due out by Spring of 2012 that are the next generation of open educational resources able to be remixed, reused and restructured based on an open Creative Common license model.

About KNO
Kno, Inc. is an education software company on a mission to make learning engaging, effective, and social for students. Osman Rashid, the co-founder of Chegg, and Babur Habib, a consumer electronics veteran, founded Kno, Inc. in May 2009. The company has received funding from Andreessen Horowitz, Intel Capital, Goldman Sachs, Advanced Publications, FLOODGATE, GSV Capital, First Round Capital, Ron Conway, Silicon Valley Bank, SV Angels and TriplePoint Capital and is based in Santa Clara, California. For more information, go to http://www.kno.com, or follow Kno at http://facebook.com/GoodtoKno.

Contacts:
For 20MM Foundation: Liz Gonzales, 916.442.9300                                                                                
Liz(at)20mm(dot)org

For Kno, Inc. Jennifer Stephens Acree, 310-780-3331 jennifer(at)jsastrategies(dot)com
or Kathryn Kelly, 408-718-9043 kathrynkellypr(at)gmail(dot)com

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Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2011/10/prweb8856748.htm.


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