How to Adapt an Open Textbook

Make a Plan

Before adapting an existing book, it’s important to establish a road map that will guide the timeline of the work, layout and style of the work, and desired changes. Whether your adaptation is small or large, this step is important to ensure a cohesive and consistent final product. Below are tips to help you with style and consistency.

Style

To help you set this up, see the Style Guide [New Tab] in the BCcampus Open Education Self-Publishing Guide [New Tab]. Consider creating a style sheet as well that identifies the idiosyncrasies of your adaptation in terms of style, such as citation, spellings, and layout. For an adaptation, it is suggested that you follow the citation style used by the original author to maintain consistency throughout the open textbook.

Consistency

One of the challenges of adapting an open textbook is to create a final product that is consistent throughout. It is highly recommended that you assess the original textbook before you begin. Once this has been done, attempt to match all revised and new text, resources, layout and citation styles to that of the original work.

Assess language and tone

Begin by assessing the style and tone of the original text. Here are some elements to be aware of:

  • Is the tone of the language formal, or friendly and conversational?
  • How does the author address the reader? From a distance? Or does the author include the reader with phrases such as “we learn” and “you will see”?
  • How is punctuation used? For example, are serial commas used, i.e. a comma before “and” when listing three or more things: “the cat, the dog, and the horse” OR “the cat, the dog and the horse”.
  • How long is the typical sentence? Paragraph?
  • Pay attention to the word count for existing chapters (average and range). Try to maintain this count for both new and revised chapters. Ask your project manager for assistance, if required.

What is the layout?

As you review the textbook, take note of the following:

  • Does each chapter contain specific pedagogical features such as Learning Objectives, Exercises, Summary, Suggested Readings, highlighted points of interest?
  • Does the author use lists? If so, are bullets or numbers used or something else?
  • How are headings used? Are sub-headings used? What is the highest heading level used?
  • How long are sections under a heading or sub-heading?

How are resources used?

Resources refer to all items other than text, such as photos, graphs, diagrams and multimedia content (video or audio links). Pay attention to what types of resources the original author used, how often they are inserted and how they are labeled. Ensure all external resources are either released with an open copyright license or are in the public domain. See Fair Dealing and Fair Use [New Tab] in the Self-Publishing Guide [New Tab].

  • Resources should have a caption (e.g., Figure 1 + description). See the Resources: Captions and Attributions [New Tab] section in the Self-Publishing Guide [New Tab] for details.
  • Differentiate between figures and tables (e.g., Figure 1.2 or Table 1.2).
  • For adaptations, use the numbering system employed by the original author.
  • For new creations, use a numbering system that incorporates the chapter number and image sequence. For example, for the first figure in Chapter 1 caption the figure, Figure 1.1.
  • New types of resources can be added to the adapted version however, keep the overall
    textbook in mind. When adding a new type of resource ensure that it enhances the flow of the book.
  • In addition to the above, we suggest the attribution be based on the guidelines recommended by Creative Commons [New Tab].

References and citation style

When you assess the textbook, identify both the citation style, and how and where references are listed in the book (e.g., at the end of each chapter, at the end of the book, or as footnotes). Note how in-text citations are used including punctuation. Consider using the same citation style.

License

Icon for the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License

Make a Plan by Lauri M. Aesoph is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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Feb 22, 2018
Before adapting an existing book, it's important to establish a road map that will guide the timeline of the work, layout and style of the work, and <a target="_blank" href="https://opentextbc.ca/adaptopentextbook/chapter/some-changes-you-can-make-to-an-adaptation/" rel="noopener">desired changes</a>. Whether your adaptation is small or large, this step is important to ensure a cohesive and consistent final product. Below are tips to help you with style and consistency.  Before adapting an existing book, it's important to establish a road map that will guide the timeline of the work, layout and style of the work, and <a target="_blank" href="/adaptopentextbook/chapter/some-changes-you-can-make-to-an-adaptation/" rel="noopener">desired changes</a>. Whether your adaptation is small or large, this step is important to ensure a cohesive and consistent final product. Below are tips to help you with style and consistency.
<h2>Style</h2> <h2>Style</h2>
To help you set this up, see the <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/back-matter/appendix-2/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Style Guide [New Tab]</a> in the BCcampus Open Education <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Self-Publishing Guide</em> [New Tab]</a>. Consider creating a <strong>style sheet</strong> as well that identifies the idiosyncrasies of your adaptation in terms of style, such as citation, spellings, and layout. For an adaptation, it is suggested that you follow the citation style used by the original author to maintain consistency throughout the open textbook. To help you set this up, see the <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/back-matter/appendix-2/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Style Guide [New Tab]</a> in the BCcampus Open Education <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Self-Publishing Guide</em> [New Tab]</a>. Consider creating a <strong>style sheet</strong> as well that identifies the idiosyncrasies of your adaptation in terms of style, such as citation, spellings, and layout. For an adaptation, it is suggested that you follow the citation style used by the original author to maintain consistency throughout the open textbook.
<h2>Consistency</h2> <h2>Consistency</h2>
One of the challenges of adapting an open textbook is to create a final product that is consistent throughout. It is highly recommended that you assess the original textbook before you begin. Once this has been done, attempt to match all revised and new text, resources, layout and citation styles to that of the original work. One of the challenges of adapting an open textbook is to create a final product that is consistent throughout. It is highly recommended that you assess the original textbook before you begin. Once this has been done, attempt to match all revised and new text, resources, layout and citation styles to that of the original work.
<h4>Assess language and tone</h4> <h4>Assess language and tone</h4>
Begin by assessing the style and tone of the original text. Here are some elements to be aware of: Begin by assessing the style and tone of the original text. Here are some elements to be aware of:
<ul> <ul>
<li>Is the tone of the language formal, or friendly and conversational?</li>  <li>Is the tone of the language formal, or friendly and conversational?</li>
<li>How does the author address the reader? From a distance? Or does the author include the reader with phrases such as “we learn” and “you will see”?</li>  <li>How does the author address the reader? From a distance? Or does the author include the reader with phrases such as “we learn” and “you will see”?</li>
<li>How is punctuation used? For example, are serial commas used, i.e. a comma before “and” when listing three or more things: “the cat, the dog, and the horse” OR “the cat, the dog and the horse”.</li>  <li>How is punctuation used? For example, are serial commas used, i.e. a comma before “and” when listing three or more things: “the cat, the dog, and the horse” OR “the cat, the dog and the horse”.</li>
<li>How long is the typical sentence? Paragraph?</li>  <li>How long is the typical sentence? Paragraph?</li>
<li>Pay attention to the word count for existing chapters (average and range). Try to maintain this count for both new and revised chapters. Ask your project manager for assistance, if required.</li>  <li>Pay attention to the word count for existing chapters (average and range). Try to maintain this count for both new and revised chapters. Ask your project manager for assistance, if required.</li>
</ul> </ul>
<h4>What is the layout?</h4> <h4>What is the layout?</h4>
As you review the textbook, take note of the following: As you review the textbook, take note of the following:
<ul> <ul>
<li>Does each chapter contain specific pedagogical features such as Learning Objectives, Exercises, Summary, Suggested Readings, highlighted points of interest?</li>  <li>Does each chapter contain specific pedagogical features such as Learning Objectives, Exercises, Summary, Suggested Readings, highlighted points of interest?</li>
<li>Does the author use lists? If so, are bullets or numbers used or something else?</li>  <li>Does the author use lists? If so, are bullets or numbers used or something else?</li>
<li>How are headings used? Are sub-headings used? What is the highest heading level used?</li>  <li>How are headings used? Are sub-headings used? What is the highest heading level used?</li>
<li>How long are sections under a heading or sub-heading?</li>  <li>How long are sections under a heading or sub-heading?</li>
</ul> </ul>
<h4>How are resources used?</h4> <h4>How are resources used?</h4>
Resources refer to all items other than text, such as photos, graphs, diagrams and multimedia content (video or audio links). Pay attention to what types of resources the original author used, how often they are inserted and how they are labeled. Ensure all external resources are either released with an open copyright license or are in the public domain. See <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/chapter/fair-dealing-and-fair-use/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Fair Dealing and Fair Use [New Tab]</a> in the <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Self-Publishing Guide</em> [New Tab]</a>. Resources refer to all items other than text, such as photos, graphs, diagrams and multimedia content (video or audio links). Pay attention to what types of resources the original author used, how often they are inserted and how they are labeled. Ensure all external resources are either released with an open copyright license or are in the public domain. See <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/chapter/fair-dealing-and-fair-use/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Fair Dealing and Fair Use [New Tab]</a> in the <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Self-Publishing Guide</em> [New Tab]</a>.
<ul> <ul>
<li>Resources should have a caption (e.g., Figure 1 + description). See the Resources: Captions and Attributions [New Tab] section in the <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Self-Publishing Guide</em> [New Tab]</a><em> </em>for details.</li>   <li>Resources should have a caption (e.g., Figure 1 + description). See the <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/chapter/resources-captions-attributions/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Resources: Captions and Attributions [New Tab]</a> section in the <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Self-Publishing Guide</em> [New Tab]</a><em> </em>for details.</li>
<li>Differentiate between figures and tables (e.g., Figure 1.2 or Table 1.2).</li>  <li>Differentiate between figures and tables (e.g., Figure 1.2 or Table 1.2).</li>
<li>For adaptations, use the numbering system employed by the original author.</li>  <li>For adaptations, use the numbering system employed by the original author.</li>
<li>For new creations, use a numbering system that incorporates the chapter number and image sequence. For example, for the first figure in Chapter 1 caption the figure, Figure 1.1.</li>  <li>For new creations, use a numbering system that incorporates the chapter number and image sequence. For example, for the first figure in Chapter 1 caption the figure, Figure 1.1.</li>
<li>New types of resources can be added to the adapted version however, keep the overall  <li>New types of resources can be added to the adapted version however, keep the overall
textbook in mind. When adding a new type of resource ensure that it enhances the flow of the book.</li> textbook in mind. When adding a new type of resource ensure that it enhances the flow of the book.</li>
<li>In addition to the above, we suggest the attribution be based on the <a target="_blank" href="http://wiki.creativecommons.org/Best_practices_for_attribution" rel="noopener">guidelines recommended by Creative Commons.</a></li>   <li>In addition to the above, we suggest the attribution be based on the <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/chapter/resources-captions-attributions/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">guidelines recommended by Creative Commons [New Tab]</a>.</li>
</ul> </ul>
<h4>References and citation style</h4> <h4>References and citation style</h4>
When you assess the textbook, identify both the citation style, and how and where references are listed in the book (e.g., at the end of each chapter, at the end of the book, or as footnotes). Note how in-text citations are used including punctuation. Consider using the same citation style. When you assess the textbook, identify both the citation style, and how and where references are listed in the book (e.g., at the end of each chapter, at the end of the book, or as footnotes). Note how in-text citations are used including punctuation. Consider using the same citation style.
Aug 11, 2017
Before adapting an existing book, it's important to establish a road map that will guide the timeline of the work, layout and style of the work, and <a target="_blank" href="https://opentextbc.ca/adaptopentextbook/chapter/some-changes-you-can-make-to-an-adaptation/" rel="noopener">desired changes</a>. Whether your adaptation is small or large, this step is important to ensure a cohesive and consistent final product. Below are tips to help you with style and consistency. Before adapting an existing book, it's important to establish a road map that will guide the timeline of the work, layout and style of the work, and <a target="_blank" href="https://opentextbc.ca/adaptopentextbook/chapter/some-changes-you-can-make-to-an-adaptation/" rel="noopener">desired changes</a>. Whether your adaptation is small or large, this step is important to ensure a cohesive and consistent final product. Below are tips to help you with style and consistency.
<h2>Style</h2> <h2>Style</h2>
To help you set this up, see the <a target="_blank" href="https://opentextbc.ca/opentextbook/chapter/style-guide/" rel="noopener">Style Guide</a> in the <a target="_blank" href="https://opentextbc.ca/opentextbook/" rel="noopener"><em>BC Open Textbook Authoring Guide</em></a>. Consider creating a <strong>style sheet</strong> as well that identifies the idiosyncrasies of your adaptation in terms of style, such as citation, spellings, and layout. For an adaptation, it is suggested that you follow the citation style used by the original author to maintain consistency throughout the open textbook.  To help you set this up, see the <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/back-matter/appendix-2/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Style Guide [New Tab]</a> in the BCcampus Open Education <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Self-Publishing Guide</em> [New Tab]</a>. Consider creating a <strong>style sheet</strong> as well that identifies the idiosyncrasies of your adaptation in terms of style, such as citation, spellings, and layout. For an adaptation, it is suggested that you follow the citation style used by the original author to maintain consistency throughout the open textbook.
<h2>Consistency</h2> <h2>Consistency</h2>
One of the challenges of adapting an open textbook is to create a final product that is consistent throughout. It is highly recommended that you assess the original textbook before you begin. Once this has been done, attempt to match all revised and new text, resources, layout and citation styles to that of the original work. One of the challenges of adapting an open textbook is to create a final product that is consistent throughout. It is highly recommended that you assess the original textbook before you begin. Once this has been done, attempt to match all revised and new text, resources, layout and citation styles to that of the original work.
<h4>Assess language and tone</h4> <h4>Assess language and tone</h4>
Begin by assessing the style and tone of the original text. Here are some elements to be aware of: Begin by assessing the style and tone of the original text. Here are some elements to be aware of:
<ul> <ul>
<li>Is the tone of the language formal, or friendly and conversational?</li>  <li>Is the tone of the language formal, or friendly and conversational?</li>
<li>How does the author address the reader? From a distance? Or does the author include the reader with phrases such as “we learn” and “you will see”?</li>  <li>How does the author address the reader? From a distance? Or does the author include the reader with phrases such as “we learn” and “you will see”?</li>
<li>How is punctuation used? For example, are serial commas used, i.e. a comma before “and” when listing three or more things: “the cat, the dog, and the horse” OR “the cat, the dog and the horse”.</li>  <li>How is punctuation used? For example, are serial commas used, i.e. a comma before “and” when listing three or more things: “the cat, the dog, and the horse” OR “the cat, the dog and the horse”.</li>
<li>How long is the typical sentence? Paragraph?</li>  <li>How long is the typical sentence? Paragraph?</li>
<li>Pay attention to the word count for existing chapters (average and range). Try to maintain this count for both new and revised chapters. Ask your project manager for assistance, if required.</li>  <li>Pay attention to the word count for existing chapters (average and range). Try to maintain this count for both new and revised chapters. Ask your project manager for assistance, if required.</li>
</ul> </ul>
<h4>What is the layout?</h4> <h4>What is the layout?</h4>
As you review the textbook, take note of the following: As you review the textbook, take note of the following:
<ul> <ul>
<li>Does each chapter contain specific pedagogical features such as Learning Objectives, Exercises, Summary, Suggested Readings, highlighted points of interest?</li>  <li>Does each chapter contain specific pedagogical features such as Learning Objectives, Exercises, Summary, Suggested Readings, highlighted points of interest?</li>
<li>Does the author use lists? If so, are bullets or numbers used or something else?</li>  <li>Does the author use lists? If so, are bullets or numbers used or something else?</li>
<li>How are headings used? Are sub-headings used? What is the highest heading level used?</li>  <li>How are headings used? Are sub-headings used? What is the highest heading level used?</li>
<li>How long are sections under a heading or sub-heading?</li>  <li>How long are sections under a heading or sub-heading?</li>
</ul> </ul>
<h4>How are resources used?</h4> <h4>How are resources used?</h4>
Resources refer to all items other than text, such as photos, graphs, diagrams and multimedia content (video or audio links). Pay attention to what types of resources the original author used, how often they are inserted and how they are labeled. Ensure all external resources are either released with an open copyright license or are in the public domain. See <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/opentextbook/chapter/fair-dealing-and-bc-open-textbooks/">Fair Dealing and BC Open Textbooks</a> in the <a target="_blank" href="https://opentextbc.ca/opentextbook/" rel="noopener"><em>BC Open Textbook Authoring Guide </em></a>.  Resources refer to all items other than text, such as photos, graphs, diagrams and multimedia content (video or audio links). Pay attention to what types of resources the original author used, how often they are inserted and how they are labeled. Ensure all external resources are either released with an open copyright license or are in the public domain. See <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/chapter/fair-dealing-and-fair-use/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Fair Dealing and Fair Use [New Tab]</a> in the <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Self-Publishing Guide</em> [New Tab]</a>.
<ul> <ul>
<li>Resources should have a caption (e.g., Figure 1 + description). See the <a target="_blank" href="http://opentextbc.ca/opentextbook/chapter/captions-2/#captions" rel="noopener">How to Add a Caption to an Image</a> section in the <a target="_blank" href="https://opentextbc.ca/opentextbook/" rel="noopener"><em>BC Open Textbook Authoring Guide </em></a>for details.</li>   <li>Resources should have a caption (e.g., Figure 1 + description). See the Resources: Captions and Attributions [New Tab] section in the <a href="https://opentextbc.ca/selfpublishguide/" target="_blank" rel="noopener"><em>Self-Publishing Guide</em> [New Tab]</a><em> </em>for details.</li>
<li>Differentiate between figures and tables (e.g., Figure 1.2 or Table 1.2).</li>  <li>Differentiate between figures and tables (e.g., Figure 1.2 or Table 1.2).</li>
<li>For adaptations, use the numbering system employed by the original author.</li>  <li>For adaptations, use the numbering system employed by the original author.</li>
<li>For new creations, use a numbering system that incorporates the chapter number and image sequence. For example, for the first figure in Chapter 1 caption the figure, Figure 1.1.</li>  <li>For new creations, use a numbering system that incorporates the chapter number and image sequence. For example, for the first figure in Chapter 1 caption the figure, Figure 1.1.</li>
<li>New types of resources can be added to the adapted version however, keep the overall  <li>New types of resources can be added to the adapted version however, keep the overall
textbook in mind. When adding a new type of resource ensure that it enhances the flow of the book.</li> textbook in mind. When adding a new type of resource ensure that it enhances the flow of the book.</li>
<li>In addition to the above, we suggest the attribution be based on the <a target="_blank" href="http://wiki.creativecommons.org/Best_practices_for_attribution" rel="noopener">guidelines recommended by Creative Commons.</a></li>  <li>In addition to the above, we suggest the attribution be based on the <a target="_blank" href="http://wiki.creativecommons.org/Best_practices_for_attribution" rel="noopener">guidelines recommended by Creative Commons.</a></li>
</ul> </ul>
<h4>References and citation style</h4> <h4>References and citation style</h4>
When you assess the textbook, identify both the citation style, and how and where references are listed in the book (e.g., at the end of each chapter, at the end of the book, or as footnotes). Note how in-text citations are used including punctuation. Consider using the same citation style. When you assess the textbook, identify both the citation style, and how and where references are listed in the book (e.g., at the end of each chapter, at the end of the book, or as footnotes). Note how in-text citations are used including punctuation. Consider using the same citation style.