A service loved by MBA students: how eTextbooks from Kortext have helped the University of Southampton kickstart their students’ learning.
The University of Southampton is a prestigious institution ranking 13th overall in the Complete University Guide 2023.
As one of the founding members of the Russell Group, it is committed to making social, economic and cultural impacts through excellence in teaching and research.
Southampton Business School offers a full-time MBA, delivered on-campus over one year.
Value for money
Southampton Business School has been a Kortext partner for over 5 years and began provisioning core eTextbooks to their MBA students as part of a scheme to improve content access by offering free iPads in conjunction with digital versions of study materials.
When choosing their eTextbook partner, the school was seeking a cutting-edge platform that also offered real value for money. Prof. Peter Rodgers, MBA Director at Southampton Business School, explained:
We were attracted to Kortext primarily because it was a high-quality product and offered competitive pricing. When we received quotes for the eTextbooks needed for our MBA programme, they came in over two-thirds less expensive than the original publisher versions, validating the aggregator model and justifying our decision to partner with Kortext.
eTextbooks at the point of need
The introduction of Kortext’s native apps meant the university no longer needed to supply free iPads to their students during onboarding – instead, students could download the Kortext Arcturus app to their personal devices to view their digital bookshelf and study anytime, anywhere.
Before their induction, students have lots of questions about how to prepare for their course and what books they need to buy. We can now say to them, ‘You don’t need to buy them, they’re already in your digital library on the Kortext Arcturus platform. It’s reassuring from a student perspective to know they don’t have to buy anything extra because it’s all included.
Dr Swarna Prasad, MBA Programme Manager at Southampton Business School, agreed:
By making reading materials readily available from the start of their course, we’re helping them to kickstart their learning. Our MBA students are busy people – by embracing more digital content and providing 24-hour access through Kortext, our students can bypass the stress and inconvenience of short-term loans, waitlists and even having to physically take out and return their books to the library.
We offer digital textbooks as an add-on for students, appreciating that some still prefer print. The age range for the MBA programme is from 27 to 45 so it depends how comfortable they are with technology, but Kortext is always on hand to answer queries and the support button on the platform makes it easy for students to ask for help. We’ve had great feedback from students that they’re happy with the quick responses they receive.
Student engagement success
Kortext recorded impressive learner data across academic year 21/22 with MBA students showing deep engagement with their course content:
Kortext’s comprehensive analytics dashboards are a significant benefit for Southampton Business School and are described as “important and very useful to help the university capture how students engage with the teaching and learning experience.”
A supportive ongoing partnership
Kortext is looking forward to entering into a new academic year supporting Southampton’s MBA programme and for the University’s MBA team the feeling is mutual.
We have an excellent ongoing relationship with Kortext. It was a very timely partnership for us. I’m not naturally comfortable with tech, but their support has been first-class and friendly. I know if I have an issue, I can communicate it with them openly and it will be resolved straight away.
Swarna shared her thoughts:
We’re very happy to be continuing our relationship with Kortext. The platform provides a one-stop shop for all our students’ textbook needs. It’s a real USP for our students.
As the MBA programme looks to increase its cohort sizes in the future, the school is now looking at new ways to introduce the benefits of the Kortext Arcturus platform to their students at the start of their course to drive engagement with digital resources.