News Aug 5th 2016

Overpriced College Textbooks

Guy in a library

The issue of expensive textbooks for college classes seems to be one that rears its ugly head every year before the beginning of a new semester, and the most recent attack on the price of college textbooks has been a group criticism from a total of 38 community colleges that opt to use open education resources instead. In fact, physical college textbooks could start to be seen as a thing of the past with so many modern college courses now choosing to rely on interactive learning modules. It is no surprise that the move towards this and the general criticism has come from community colleges, as they are much more sensitive to the costs that students tend to rack up over the traditional four-year length of a degree course.

Classic Textbook Price Problem

The issue of expensive college textbooks is one that has been raging for decades, with the problem seemingly getting worse and worse every year. A professor will make a textbook choice and the student has no option but to pay out for the book or miss out on the class. In this situation the professor chooses the best book buthas no cares or concerns about keeping the prices of the books they choose low. In most scenarios, a student does not pick a college based on how expensive their set of assigned textbooks are going to be, so after arriving and beginning their classes, it is only then that they discover the massive hidden cost.

Turn To Online Textbooks

One alterative solution that is spreading wider and wider throughout different colleges in the USA is the practise of using free online textbooks to cover the bulk of reading material for a specific class. There are plenty to choose from online that cover the majority of common undergraduate courses from biology to economics and more, and this also applies for courses like English where a professor could choose to make their reading list compiled solely of texts that can be found readily available online.

Other Alternative Solutions

While the use of free online books continues to develop and grow, the most popular way to beat the high costs is to search for textbooks for sale. There is absolutely no reason why you should be buying completely brand new textbooks for, sometimes, hundreds of dollars. There is a rich industry of second hand college textbooks that students can explore to make huge savings on the books that they need for the entire school year.

Lean On College Professors To Make A Change

Outside of searching for cheaper, second hand textbooks, another way to start to change the system is to put pressure on the college professors to carefully craft a yearly reading list that is filled with books that they know for a fact are not extortionately priced. It is not an unreasonable request for educators to keep their student's finances and budget restrictions in mind when planning their classes for the semester.

Consider Bundling Textbook Prices

Another move that would be welcomed by many is for colleges to bundle to price of textbooks with the price of tuition, with this method at least saving students from having the nasty surprise of a huge, added on, unexpected cost to start off their college experience. With free online alternatives, second hand sales and the theory of bundling the cost, there are certainly enough alternative solutions to make college administrators think about their practices.

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