User Guide

Texas Politics

This is a complete online text. Navigation tools, reading tools, interactive features, and reporting tools will help you work your way through the webtext. 

Navigation Tools

Title Page. When you sign in to your webtext, the first screen you see will be the title page.  Click Enter to get started. 

Title page of webtext

Table of Contents Menu.  Click on the Table of Contents Menu in the top left to access the list of pages in the webtext. Simply use your mouse to select the page you want to view. The title of the page you're currently on appears in a highlighted box. To close the Table of Contents Menu, click the icon again.

Table of contents in top left corner

To expand a chapter's list of pages, click the arrow button to the right of the chapter title. To close the chapter's expanded list of pages, click the arrow button again.

Click arrow to expand chapter pages

Tools Menu. Click the Tools Menu in the upper right hand corner to access your list of tools. These include the Notebook, My Notes, Read to Me, Order a Print Book, Get the App, Citation Guide, Credits, and Help.

Tools menu in top right corner

Next and Back Buttons. The Next and Back buttons appear when you hover your mouse over the right or left side of each page. They are also located at the bottom of every page to allow you to browse pages in order. 

Next and back buttons on the side of pages

Next and back buttons at the bottom of pages

Reading Tools

Highlighting and Annotation. With the annotation toolbar, you can choose from four different highlighting colors and make notes in the margins of the webtext. 

Click and select to highlight

Footnotes. Anchored footnotes help you navigate quickly to noted commentary and back. Click on the red footnote indicator to view the citation or comment. When you're done reading it, simply click on the footnote indicator in the citation to return to the paragraph you were reading.

Clickable footnotes in text

Clickable footnotes at the bottom of page

Rollover Vocabulary. Vocabulary definitions appear when you use your mouse to hover over a term in red.

Hover for rollover vocabulary

Glossary. The last section of the webtext is the glossary, which lists the vocabulary words used in all chapters.

Glossary at the end of the chapters

Search. Click the magnifying glass that appears next to the Table of Contents icon in the top left corner of your webtext. Type any word you'd like to search for and click Go. Sort the results either by location of the word in the webtext OR by relevance. Each result will provide the clickable chapter and page number, along with the title of the page.

Search tool in top left corner of webtext

Bookmarking. When you sign back in to the webtext you will land on the chapter page of the chapter you were last viewing. You will also notice a bookmark icon in the Table of Contents Menu to indicate what page you left off on.

a bookmark icon in the Table of Contents Menu to indicate what page you left off on


Interactive Features

Get the Gist. Study questions appear at the bottom of most pages. Use the Reset button to reset your answers and try again. You can also use this feature to review for tests. 

Resettable Get the Gist question 

Response Boards. These are non-threaded discussion boards. To start, type your answer into the text field. Clicking the Save Draft button will save your work without posting it for others to see. This does not submit your work for grading. 

Response board question showing save draft button

Clicking the Post button will post your work for everyone to read and for your instructor to grade. You cannot change your answer once you have posted it.  

Response board question showing post button

Once you have posted your response, comments from the rest of your class will be visible. The five most recent comments will appear, and if you would like to see more, click "View more responses." You can return to this page later to see new responses.

To see more responses, click View more responses

Polls. Choose a response from the available answers and click Submit. 

Poll showing view responses button

After responding, a pie chart will appear illustrating the responses of your entire class. You can return to this page later to see updated data as your peers provide their responses. 

Poll results

Short Answer Questions. Short answer questions appear throughout the pages. To complete, type your answer and then select Save Draft.

Short answer question showing save draft button

After you save, the Submit button appears. Click Submit and a sample answer will appear to allow you to evaluate your answer.

Short answer question showing submit button

Videos. Embedded videos appear throughout the text.  Use the video controls on the video player to navigate.  There is also a text version available  that can be accessed by clicking the Read Text Version link.

Embedded video showing read text version button

Investigations. If your webtext has Investigations, you can further explore concepts of Texas government by examining primary sources, historical artifacts, video, and audio resources. The questions on Investigations are resettable, and each question has its own individual “Save” button, which provides a two-step process that lets you change your mind, or change your response if you select a response unintentionally. 

Investigation questions

It is important to note the “Save” button MUST be clicked for each question in order to save each answer when you finish selecting their response. In other words, clicking “Save” on one response will only save that response. Question types include, multiple choice questions, response boards, short answer questions, and polls.

Investigation showing save button for each multiple choice question

Click reset all multiple choice questions to try again

Progress Indicators

Chapter Progress Bars. Progress bars located under the chapter name fill in as you complete work in a chapter.

Chapter progress bar under each chapter in tools menu

Page Progress Boxes. There are progress indicators on the Table of Contents Menu to let you see pages where you have completed work. Filled in boxes indicate you have completed all the questions on that page.

Filled in page progress boxes

An empty box indicates there is still work to be done.

Empty page progress boxes

Page Progress Headers. These progress headers appear at the top of every webtext page. They indicate what percentage of work you have completed on that page and also show the percentage you have gotten correct.

progress header at top of page

Reporting Tools

Notebook. The Notebook provides an easy way to view the work that you’ve completed, and it's the same view of your work that your instructor has. It’s accessed under the Tools Menu from any page.

Tools menu in upper right corner

Student View of Notebook. Hovering over the chapter reveals the chapter’s title.

Hovering over chapter reveals chapter's title

Notebook Completion. The page numbers in the webtext correspond to the columns in the Notebook. Hovering over a page number will display the title of that page. 

Hovering over page number displays title of that page

Completed Work. As you complete your work, corresponding squares in the Notebook turn orange. A check mark inside the orange square will indicate completion for that page, a light orange indicates there is still work to be done. Hover over an orange square to see the the number of correct answers and when you last submitted work.

Squares in Notebook turn orange

Viewing Work in the Notebook. Clicking on an orange square allows you to drill down and view the questions’ details. The correct answers appear in a green box with a check mark, and the incorrect answer has a red X. Left and right arrow buttons next to the page title allows for easy navigation.

Notebook page view

Go to this Page. To view your work inside the webtext, click "Go to this page," to be taken to the webtext page.

Use Go to this page in top right corner to be taken to webtext page

Number of Attempts. The number of attempts is noted for each question which is useful if the limited-attempt feature is enabled for your webtext.


See number of attempts on left side of question

Print Option

A print version of Texas Politics is available for purchase from the Order a Print Book link. Please note that the webtext questions can only be completed online.

Order a print book is in the tools menu

Soomo Messaging

In the lower right hand corner of the webtext is a green question mark.  If you run into any speed bumps in the webtext or have a question for Soomo, click the question mark and submit your question.  A representative from Soomo will respond to you as soon as possible.   

Soomo Messaging in lower right corner of each page