Advantages and Disadvantages of a Textbook

Lisa R. Parker
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What is a Textbook? 

A textbook is a book used for the study of a subject. A combination of the theories, knowledge and principles of a chosen topic or course is called a textbook. People use textbooks to learn facts and techniques about a particular subject. 

How do Textbooks get Developed?

The textbooks are the accurate working tool for the teachers and students. They play a vital role in classroom instruction. The text is handy for everyone. Subject experts write textbooks in association with specialists who guide the writers through the process of textbook development. All the education boards follow a particular syllabus, and readers are designed according to the syllabus. The State education boards have standard textbooks for all the government schools and some private schools under the government’s control. For example, Karnataka state board textbooks, Tamil Nadu board textbooks, Gujarat board textbook etc. But the CBSE and ICSE have different syllabus and textbooks. A group of teachers develop a concept for a book based on their perception that the textbook has some unique features. Then they contact a publisher with their proposal. Publishers might identify the writer, and when the commitment is made to publish the book, the writers work with editors from the publishing company to develop the concept for the textbook. 

Advantages of Textbooks

Textbooks are much more complex than any other publication. They are the best teaching aid in the classroom. The reader provides you with some advantages depending on how they are used in the school. Educational boards in each state have the responsibility to develop textbooks based on the prescribed syllabus. The state educational boards are different from the National educational boards. State boards have particular syllabus and books: for example, Tamil Nadu has a uniform syllabus called Samacheer Kalvi, Gujarat state board has its own syllabus, and they provide textbooks in various forms like printable textbooks, or online textbooks etc. students can also download books from particular state educational boards: for example the GSEB std 10 textbook download, etc. The text has tremendous impacts at all levels of programmes. The education philosophy of the textbook influences the class and learning process. 

  • They give various learning resources: Textbooks are accompanied by CDs, Cassettes, Workbooks, Videos and more comprehensive teaching guides offering rich and varied resources for teachers and learners.
  • They afford structure and syllabus for a program: The syllabus is systematically planned and developed in the textbook. Without textbooks, the program may have no central focus, and students may not receive a syllabus. 
  • Textbooks maintain quality: A good text is used while teaching; the students will be exposed to elements that have been tested and tried and appropriately determined.
  • Textbooks are influential: Textbooks permit teachers to devote time to teach rather than produce materials. They save teachers’ time.
  • They can train teachers: A textbook synchronically with the teacher’s handbook can assist as primary teacher training for those with limited teaching experience. 
  • They can contribute applicable language models and input: Textbooks can encourage teachers who may not be able to produce authentic language data on their own. 
  • They are visually appealing: Textbooks have high standard objects and compositions, fascinating to teachers and learners. 
  • Convenience: The textbook elements are club together and stay in order, and it is light enough to carry easily. Hence the textbook is a convenient package. 
  • Economy: The textbook is the cheapest way of providing learning material for each learner.  

Disadvantages of Textbooks

Using textbooks is one of the most effective ways of teaching. They are as good as the teacher who uses it.  Teachers should make decisions on how to use texts in classroom teaching. Textbooks are as good as they may appear on the surface, but they too have some limitations. For example: 

  • Textbooks may not match student’s needs.
  • They may include inauthentic language.
  • They may decline the content.
  • They are expensive. 
  • They can deskill teachers.
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