Fifth Monthly Check-in: January (complete the two polls!)

Hi Rebus cohort. It feels like it’s been a long time since we’ve talked, although it’s been the same amount of time as usual. Does the beginning of your semester feel as unnecessarily complicated as mine? It seems like the beginning of each semester is a barrage of new guidelines and protocols at my institution. Is that unique to my college?

@apurva and other Rebus team members have been discussing how to best serve your needs in Spring 2022 and, as we suggested in December, we’re moving towards a blend of targeted and group discussions. Instead of meeting as a large group next week, I’ll ask you to sign up for a 15-minute conference within a two-week period. Then, in February we’ll all meet back up to share our progress.

To help make this happen, I have two action items for you.

Action item one: Please have one team member sign up for a 15-minute conference time within the next two weeks (so, choose a time slot for between now and January 28th). Here’s the sign-up tool: Calendly.

Action item two: Please retake the Spring 2022 monthly check-in poll. We gathered some results a month ago, but Apurva let me know there’s slightly more flexibility in her schedule now. So, I’ve added new options: Spring 2022 poll for monthly check-ins (February, April, May).

If you have any questions, reply to this thread. I look forward to seeing most of you for the 15-minute conferences soon:)

1 Like

Thanks, Joel!! I’ll fill out the second poll, and will ask my colleague @joerdis to do so as well. I’m excited to introduce you all to Jördis, who will be joining your sessions down the road and supporting your project work. :smiley:

@may21-cohort — as you noticed, there was no group check-in today, as you are all required to meet with Joel 1:1 for a short ~15 minute conversation. The hope is that you can use this time to get more specific project support. You’re welcome to meet as a team, or just ask 1 representative from your team to chat with Joel. If you haven’t booked your slot yet, this is a gentle reminder to please submit this form and book your slot.

Don’t forget to also fill out the Spring 2022 poll for monthly check-ins in (February, April, May)!

1 Like

Hi @apurva, in my meeting with @ttomlin1 and @jonesb, we talked briefly about issues related to LaTeX and their textbook. They mentioned that originally they had some LaTeX equations, but dropped them in favor of screenshots/images due to scrolling problems. Here’s my question: is there software that helps embed LaTeX into websites and Pressbooks in a more seamless way? I thought one group from my own cohort (Feb 20) dealt with this somewhat. Do you recall?

Pressbooks uses MathJax or WPQuickLaTeX to display equations written in LaTeX. MathJax is the preferred way to render equations as it offers more web accessibility support. See more information in the Pressbooks user guide: Add Mathematical Notation – Pressbooks User Guide

This Intermediate Algebra book on Pressbooks displays equations in MathJax.

@nmadamopoulos from the June 2021 TSP cohort (facilitated by @bjm6168) is also using LaTeX to write equations in his electromagnetics book, published in Pressbooks, in case @ttomlin1 or @jonesb had specific questions about this process for someone new to the tool.

1 Like

After a lot of struggle, I have found that the option MathJax is the best at this point. I write the equations in Overleaf (it should work with other LaTex editors too), check the output quickly in the viewer that is next to the LaTex editor, and then copy/paste in PressBooks.

An issue that I have encountered: Some times when I copy/paste from Overleaf, the output gives me an unexpected result. In this case, I go to the Text editor tab in PB and remove some <div>, <\div> that appear.

Unfortunately, MathJax does not offer autonumbering of the equations, which is very important in a science text book with a lot of equations.

QuickLatex offers autonumbering, but I had some problems when writing integrals. The output was not consistent.



Thanks for sharing your experience, Nicholas! Overleaf is a common tool, as is PreTeXt which @mbranson (a TSP alumna) is using on his Math textbook Quantitative Literacy for Social Justice (see project homepage and a sample chapter on PreTeXt)

MathJax can support autonumbering equations, but the feature isn’t fully integrated into Pressbooks yet. I’ve submitted a request to Pressbooks to supporty this functionality — see the GitHub issue if you’re interested. I will follow-up soon to see what the status is.

1 Like

Hi Nicholas,
Our team decided to use PreTeXt instead of Pressbooks for this reason (and because the language is tightly based off of LaTeX in the first place, so a lot of other functionality is also similar). If you’re already writing in Pressbooks, it could be a really heavy lift to move it over to PreTeXt, but it might be something to consider for a future version of the text.

I’m happy to answer any questions about our experience! Good luck with the book!



Thanks Mark! Nicholas is sticking with Pressbooks, but I believe @ttomlin1 and @jonesb are thinking about different options for their OER on Statistics and Statistical Thinking Introduction, currently on Google Sites: OpenPSYC.

PS - Hope you are well!!

1 Like

Thank you @apurva and @mbranson and @nmadamopoulos1! We appreciate the feedback from those who have done this before!

1 Like

@apurva, I’m working with @jessicaaadams25 on importing some stuff from OpenStax into Pressbooks. What’s the best process for importing OpenStax, in your experience?

I know we had a direct message thread about this in the past - where we suggested using the import by URL option or import by Pressbooks XML option to bring in select chapters from each book. Search for the Pressbooks versions of the books in the Pressbooks Directory, and use this to import into your book. Since your book is on our network, we can help troubleshoot any issues that come up - so let us know how you get on.

1 Like