Are You Ready for the Future
Another challenge is the unlicensed distribution of professional and textbook content on peer-to-peer networks and the Internet. Elsevier continuously seeks out new ways to optimize our reference and educational tools in print and electronic formats that are tailor-made to the specific information needs of students, faculty and health-care practitioners worldwide. This way we aim to add value to the content through format and functionality. For example, in addition to print formats, Elsevier publishes many reference works via ScienceDirect and other platforms to allow for extensive browsing and advanced searching across subject, theme, alphabetical, author and cited author indexes, as well as internal cross-referencing between articles in the work. This also allows for dynamic linking to journal articles and abstract databases, making navigation flexible and easy, and the breadth of information broader.
Finally, another challenge is managing the integration of textbook content into institutional virtual learning environments (VLEs) without impacting textbook sales. In addition to licensing some of our educational content for use in institutional VLEs, Elsevier has launched and is continuing to develop a range of products, which are designed to enhance the student’s learning experience. For example, Virtual Clinical Excursions, now in its third edition, is a software-based system that allows nursing students to enter a simulated clinical setting, work with a set of complex patients and access very detailed patient records. Students are required to collect and review assessment data, determine priorities for care, observe and analyze nurse-client-family interactions, administer medications competently, and practice time-management skills.
What are some trends you see for the years ahead?
Shaw: The trends for 2006 and beyond will undoubtedly include increasing acceleration of new distribution channels for electronic book content and the discovery of that content through search; accelerated growth of VLEs within education institutions; and the continued integration of scientific journal and book content into productivity tools for researchers and professionals.