Colleges try to beat textbook costs with book reserves

“Any university or college student knows how badly textbook prices can sting, but for most, it’s simply the nature of higher education that they’ll have to obtain the text if they want to take the class. Sales of used books and book-rental services like Chegg have tried to address the problem, but the end result still requires a financial commitment on top of tuition. But now, three different institutions are adopting a solution that is far kinder to students’ wallets. Robert Morris University, in Pennsylvania, the University of Texas at San Antonio, and Patrick Henry College, in Virginia, have all started a textbook reserve — essentially a library from which students can borrow required texts. “This was the brainchild of an honors class,” said John Michalenko, vice president for student life at Robert Morris. “The students … were talking to their friends about the rising cost of textbooks on college campuses, which [have] actually risen 800 percent more than tuition increases.” From there, Michalenko explained, the students conducted a survey among classmates before submitting a proposal for the reserve idea. Robert Morris started the service in the fall, and allows students to borrow books for up to three hours at a time.”

via Inside Higher Ed

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