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Biomedical Engineering E Book Generation

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2010 Annual Conference & Exposition


Louisville, Kentucky

Publication Date

June 20, 2010

Start Date

June 20, 2010

End Date

June 23, 2010



Conference Session

BME Course and Curriculum Development

Tagged Division


Page Count


Page Numbers

15.233.1 - 15.233.13



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Paper Authors

author page

Richard Aston East Tennessee State University

author page

William H. Blanton East Tennessee State University

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract



A 164 page e-book completely self-produced by the author on a desktop computer, Medical Imaging Equipment Theory, presented as a permanently accessible PDF file, is described. This book is written at the junior/senior level in biomedical engineering. An e-mail list of roughly 2000 addresses was generated from the membership files of the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE), the Association for the Advancement of Medical Instrumentation (AAMI), and web sites at engineering colleges that feature biomedical programs. As a result the e-book has been requested by over 200 professors and researchers world wide, some of whom are helping to evaluate the pedagogical theory implied. It has been formally used and given free to students in several colleges over the past four consecutive semesters. A survey of teachers and students gives support to the idea that such a text can be self-published, and importantly that the e-book without paper print is adequate for classroom use, and that a black and white text can be cost-effectively printed ad hoc if the student desires.

The E-book

Textbook material is appearing on the Internet that can be used in the classroom without resorting to the traditional paper textbook. Here we examine the idea of using an unrestricted e-book, a portable document file (PDF), for text material that can be shared over the Internet. Such a book has the advantages of: instant searching for any word, instant links to reference sources on the World Wide Web, expandability of figures for more detail, print ability to provide a paper copy, convenient updating of the material; and the text and figures can be displayed on a computer driven projector for easy classroom discussion.

Certainly the most powerful advantage of the unrestricted e-book is that it can be reproduced exactly, instantly at virtually zero cost by almost anyone with a computer, and shared worldwide. In fact it is argued if one’s book is given to colleagues and perhaps their students as a PDF file it essentially becomes open course ware (OCW) such as has been pioneered by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). A commercial publisher who needs to have capital to run the business would probably not release an unrestricted PDF file unless it would be a promotional product to sell a larger book for which the material could be a section, for example. Indeed one can download textbooks from the world wide web. (1) (For further discussion see )

E-Book Generation Example

A 164 page e-book completely produced on a desktop computer, Medical Imaging Equipment Theory, by R. Aston (2) distributed as a permanently accessible PDF file, is described.

Aston, R., & Blanton, W. H. (2010, June), Biomedical Engineering E Book Generation Paper presented at 2010 Annual Conference & Exposition, Louisville, Kentucky. 10.18260/1-2--15800

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2010 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015