Books could be cheaper, shouldn’t be cheap
Published: Thursday, August 29, 2013
Updated: Thursday, August 29, 2013 09:08
After attending Textbook Brokers off of campus for my senior year textbooks I found myself in a puddle of bill vomit.
Six textbooks cost me nearly $600 in rental fees, and buying them out right would have easily topped $1,000.
While students complain about textbook fees it is important to understand that the universities do not choose to over price textbooks on their own, and that there are ways to help lower the cost of your overwhelming book debt.
There are three main reasons why textbooks are outrageously expensive copyright, accredited material and online components.
Copyright is important to understand because most books have multiple authors who write various parts of your textbook. With every copyright comes a fee due to the author(s) so that they are satisfied with allowing their hard work to be given to dozens of students.
Those fees lead directly into the concept of accredited materials that textbooks often use to supply students with classroom knowledge. Textbooks are known for being filled with first-hand research examples, statistics, further data from other books, and even personal dedication from the author.
In order to receive this information, textbook authors are forced to research/write for hours on end compiling and reviewing the data they have written in order for publication. So they expect a more scholarly salary or pay for their time spent.
Textbooks are designed by their authors much like an engineer designs a vehicle.
A cheap vehicle, will not get many options and the internal parts could be shady. With a more expensive vehicle you are likely to have extended warranties to ensure that the information and components you bought are accurate.
The newest additions for textbooks are online components, which are designed to enhance the classroom experience.
Online components allow the teacher access to more information and essentially can act as a homework creator, second book, or free tutoring service.
All of these features take time and program designers that use their knowledge to develop them, bringing the prices up even more.
Is the entire back-story on textbooks still driving you nuts? Well, have no fear, there are ways to save a few dollars.
Previous editions of your textbook often offer the same information but arrange the chapters or update statistical examples. Which means you can essentially learn the material without having to upgrade. Just make sure to ask your professor if it is mandatory that you have the latest edition; you would be surprised how many professors are lenient.
Another trick is purchase textbooks through third party dealers such as textbook brokers, Amazon or even eBay Inc.
These venues allow you to compare prices and some websites will even do the comparisons for you. Just make sure that you always research your third party dealer to make sure they are not associated with scams, or poor materials.
Books may be essential to classes, but bill vomit is not.