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Are ebooks and audiobooks as good as print books?

There isn't a lot of research about the impact of ereading on kids. In general, if your kids are reading -- and not getting distracted by the highly interactive features some ebooks have -- then you should encourage them no matter which format they prefer.

Some useful guidance about how ereading affects kids comes from a study by the Joan Ganz Cooney Center:

  • If your goal is literacy-building, choose basic ebooks and printed books.
  • To engage reluctant readers, choose enhanced books with multimedia features.
  • To help English-language learners, kids with special needs, and busy kids who don't have a lot of time, opt for audiobooks.

Reading is the one activity that's consistently cited as universally beneficial for all aspects of kids' lives. Providing a broad selection of both print and electronic books is probably the best route toward general literacy skills.

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Kid, 11 years old

The only things I use ebooks for are for reading manga online. So: here are the pros and cons of ebooks: Pros: -You don't have to struggle carrying all the books. Instead, you can just carry whatever computer you're using. -They can usually be free. -No waiting in line. -No worries about bending the pages or spine, since there isn't one. Cons: -It isn't as easy to quickly scroll through the web page compared to flipping the pages back and forth. -It can be harder to find the books you want. Overall, I think that ebooks will help little kids learn to read just as well as print books, but audiobooks will really have no effect.
Teen, 13 years old written by The po-po are c...

I love print books, to me they're just better than ebooks, but I can understand the desirability of not having to carry lots of weight around and the efficiency of having all your books on one device.
Teen, 13 years old written by haileighxgresham

It depends. I have the kindle oasis and I like it a lot because I can read a lot of books on it for nothing because my family has amazon prime. It's not like a real book though, since you can't hold it and admire the book cover. I'd say its good for busy people or people who just want to read quickly and cheaply
Kid, 11 years old

Yes they are. It depends on which type you prefer. I prefer print books, my dad prefers audio books and some people prefer ebooks. It all depends on preference.
Adult written by echo82

The standard black and white e-books ( I have only used kindle ) are in some ways better than print books. I can check out books from the library right away. Plus the extras like the dictionary really enhance my reading.
Kid, 12 years old

Standard e-books are as good as print. Audiobooks are good to listen to while multitasking or resting. Multimedia e-books have little value (other than eye-candy). In my opinion, the future of literature is in e-books, but print is nice too.
Teen, 14 years old written by LostInPLace

They can be good, but i would encourage the use of libraries and physical copies, just for a better feel. But having some audiobooks/ebooks is fine.