Textbooks – Hate ’em, but sometimes, you just can’t live without ’em.

Though we cannot always escape the fate of buying expensive textbooks, there are always ways you can save some money! With tuition prices rising every year, why should we spend so much money on textbooks? Especially if you might not even use it for the whole semester. Here are three articles that might just help you reduce the prices you pay for those “required”, expensive textbooks.


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Are Textbooks Worth the Pricey Cost? 

By: Rick Jackson

Summary: At Wesley College, there was an interview with the Wesley Bookstore about the prices of textbooks. Bookstore manager, Kris McGlothlin, acknowledge how it’s not the bookstore’s fault for the high prices, but rather it’s the publishers because they are the ones trying to make a profit. Though, you can buy textbooks at a cheaper price by either buying an eBook or another site, it won’t always mean you’ll end up using it. A legal studies major, Sherleen Sabin, stated how she took a psychology course and only used it a couple of times.

Why this source is important: This article acknowledges that textbooks are pricey and, sometimes, even useless. And it’s also the fact that it was an article at a college with interviews from a student and a bookstore manager that realized that textbooks aren’t always priced fairly.

What to do with the source: So, why spend even more money on textbooks that aren’t priced fairly? Why waste money on a book you will probably only open a few times during the semester? If you really want/need a textbook, check out Chegg, otherwise, we should think before we buy.

Read the full article here.


Does Renting Textbooks Make Sense?

By: Book.ly

Summary: Have you ever wonder if renting textbooks are better than buying them? Well, an article done by Book.ly explains both the pros and cons of renting a textbook. Here are their reasons:Image

Furthermore, financially, the best way to acquire textbooks is through buying used and reselling it back because it would save approximately $54.15; however, you are also taking a chance that no one would want to buy your used textbook since newer editions come out.

Why this source is important: This source helps you weigh the pros and cons of renting or buying textbooks. Not only does it show you the pros and cons, it also compares the prices if you were to buy it new, buy it used, buy it used then reselling it, and renting and returning.

What to do with the source: If you ever need some help with deciding whether to buy or rent, this is the one of the best advice for you! It’s like second hand help for you if you are on a tight budget!

Read the full article here.


If You’re Buying Textbooks This Week, Get Educated, Not Schooled

By: Eliza Brooke

Summary: While textbooks are expensive, there are tons of different ways to get them for cheaper. This article lists the ways you would be able to buy your textbook for a cheaper price. Here are the ways:

  • Boundless: “a free service that aligns its e-textbooks with other popular texts by chapter across 20 subjects.”
  • Chegg: Where you can buy new/used, rent a hard copy or rent an e-text for up to 60 days.
  • Google Play Store: e-text rentals.
  • Borrowing from an old classmate or friend.
  • Borrowing from the library.

Why this source is important: This article provides useful information about different ways to buy textbooks, yet still saving money. It gives you reasons why you should use a certain site and it has different sites for different needs and cost; from being free to paying for a textbook, this article has everything you need!

What to do with the source: When you are in doubt and overwhelm with the beginning of the semester, come here to find the best places and ways to buy your textbooks. You might even not have to pay anything for them! Which would end up saving you lots of money on top of that student loan debt you might have!

Read the full article here.


Overall: The articles provided useful sources containing different methods of buying textbooks for a cheaper price. With prices escalating and a new edition coming out every year, these three articles give you exactly what you need to know if you are tight on cash or just don’t want to spend too much money on textbooks. I hope you all have fun finding the best bargain!

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Professors!!! Guilty or Not??

“Thanks Einstein!!”


Thanks EinsteinNow I know that at least one of us has had a professor like Einstein here! I know I have; just this semester a professor stated a “required textbook” on the syllabus that I haven’t opened! Mind you the semester is almost over. Like this comic, there are many professors that say they will lecture on the material in the books but instead us other methods such as uploading articles.

So, why require us to buy textbooks that professors don’t use? Why not make life more simply and provide the students with the readings online? Everyone owns a computer and those who don’t have easy access to one.

This week we want to provide sources that really point out the roles of the professors with college textbooks and show that although some do us the college system to introduce their own material, a few are faithful and know the struggle that college students go through to buy a simple book.


Should Professors Have to Think About Textbook Prices?

By: Courtney Buell

Summary: This blogger knows her stuff! Courtney Buell goes to talk about professors role in the textbook market. She argues that professors are really the ones “calling the shots” when it comes to selecting the course textbook. This blog goes into explaining legislation changes that now require professors to look at prices and ways that can help their students buy cheaper books.

Why this source is important: The writer of this blog is a college student like the rest of us. This source is able to provide rules and legislations that are pushing for a stop in the increasing prices of textbooks. It also points us to a possible solution that we can encourage our college professors to do.

What to do with this source: This blog written by a Maryland college advisor and copywriter gives us a hope for a solution to the problem. We just need to keep pushing that this is an issue that needs a real solution!!


 

Are College Textbooks Priced Fairly?

By: Robert Carbaugh and Koushik Ghosh

Summary: This article was written to discuss the economics of textbooks. It talks about the strategies used to market textbooks to particular audience, such as college professors. The authors touch on how some legislation is now being enforced to stop the increase in prices and even professors who are offering their help by communicating with publishers to lower their costs.

Why this source is important: This source focuses on the problems surrounding increase prices in textbooks. Whether its professors or simply the publishers it is important for us to learn about those we are up against. This source unravels the tactics that publishers use to advertise their material and how we can save ourselves from being their victims. Also, it provides a solution not only to the increase of textbooks in the United States but in other countries as well.

What to do with this source: Honestly, this source gives us the tools to destroy the textbook market! Well not to the max! Seriously, this source can be used to inform others about the way that the textbook market is created and how they come up with these absurd prices.


Don’t blame professors for high cost of textbooks

By: Marie Ann Donovan

Summary: This source talks to students through the lens of a professor. They address the problem of professors being blamed for the high prices of college textbooks, when in reality professors are a victim themselves. Because these publishers are raising the prices, they have to design the learning curriculum around the financial difficulties of their students.

Why this source is important: This article is important because it gives the view of the ones being accused. People are here pointing the finger at professor for choosing these expensive books. It’s good that this source shows the other side of the argument, making it balance.

What to do with this source:  This source can be used to prove that we are all being victims of the publisher mafia! With this source we can also lift a finger at accusing professors that have good hearts and want to teach their students the best. Although, I think they can do so, in a cheaper matter.


OVERALL…These sources are all important to our understanding of the rise in textbook prices. They help provide the background information that we need, but also help clear that it is not entirely all professors out to get us! These sources are important in showing that this movement against college textbook is working…lets keep going!!!

YOU Have Been CHEATED!

Intro to the Textbook Scam and Possible Solutions


 

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While it may seem unfair to compare textbook costs with prostitution, the caveman on the right is on to something. Textbooks are bringing in a lot of revenue. It’s almost as if publishing companies and authors (AKA universities and professors) sat around a table and said, “How can we make MORE money off of students?” The worst thing is that no one did anything to stop them. The purpose of this blog is to bring awareness to the tactics that big companies use to get rich and fatten the pockets of universities at the expense of students.

Students realize that textbooks are expensive, but most do not realize the extent to which they have been cheated. These sources have been compiled to get you mad, I mean concerned (smile), enough to take action.  This week we want to provide sources that really introduce you to the argument and show the history of the textbook cost rise and the beginnings to what we can do about it.


Fixing the Broken Textbook Market

By Ethan Senack / The Student PIRGs

Summary: This report has SOOO much information on the history of textbook expenses and what students think about the rise of textbook costs. This report specifically shows the findings and  research that has been done on this issue from surveying college students.This report also features things that students, faculty, and even law-makers can do to help with textbook costs.

Why this source is important:

One of the perks of this report is that it was written by a student with students in mind. This source is also very legitimate since it went through the hands of the PIRG. Since this was created with the student in mind it is very easy to read.

You will find intriguing facts like…

65% of students said that they had decided against buying a textbook because it was too expensive.

This research is important because it puts statistics to what you and other college students are feeling.

What to do with this source practically :

This source gives a great backdrop but also gives us the golden ticket to solving this problem, OPEN TEXTBOOKS! Maybe we should listen to him…


College Textbooks Cost Most Outrageous than Ever

By Herb Weisbaum

Summary: This video and article also do a great job of presenting the current status of textbook costs.  This source addresses.

  • Textbook prices are going higher than inflation.
  • Marketplace cost is in the hands of publisher which makes it easier for textbooks to be expensive.

Why this source is important:

This source is important because it is easy to listen to. Weisbaum takes many of the findings in this field and puts them into laymans terms. It is easily digestible.

What to do with this source practically :

Weisbaum presents some intriguing information and really convinces the reader that this can be fixed. He suggests that we explore open source textbooks.


Open-source textbooks in policy focus

By Jeremy Snow

Summary:

In a recent article, written by a University of Maryland student, Jeremy Snow discusses a possible option that could eliminate the price of textbooks. That’s right! Completely eliminate the price of textbooks. Open Source textbooks seem to be the answer to the problem. This article views what needs to be done to implement it.

Why this source is important:

This possible solution to the problem is important because it could significantly lower textbook costs to the lowest levels. This also directly impacts UM college students because it was written by our college newspaper.

What to do with this source practically:

Let’s promote this! This seems extremely promising. If we are able to convince school legislatures and other bodies to support this measure perhaps we can begin to have a little extra pocket change.


OVERALL…These sources are all important to our understanding of the textbook cost rise. We can all do little things to help. After becoming educated on the issue, take the first step and contact your legislature via this link. Together we can end absurd textbook prices.