On the heels of a new federal law on textbook affordability, the Student PIRGs today released a report calling rentals, e-books and e-readers short-term remedies, and hailing open textbooks as the next step to rein in runaway costs. Already, more than 1,300 professors across the country are using open textbooks - which are free online, affordable in print and openly licensed - saving students 80% on average according to the new report.
BOSTON, Mass. (August 26, 2010) — Students across the country are gearing up for sticker shock over textbook prices this semester. The average student spends $900 per year on textbooks, and new calculations by Alpha PIRG Students show that costs have increased at an astounding rate: textbook wholesale prices have risen more than four times the rate of inflation over the last two decades (1990-2009).
A groundbreaking federal law designed to tackle the rapidly rising cost of textbooks has kicked in just in time to impact college students this fall. The law, which was part of the Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) passed by Congress in 2008, is considered the first major federal action on this issue.
Students are still paying too much for their textbooks, as book prices skyrocket at four times the rate of inflation, according to the new report from the Massachusetts Public Interest Research Group. The report highlights one major cause for the artificially high prices – publishers don’t provide clear information about their prices to faculty.
Textbook publishers’ digital “e-textbooks” do not give students any relief from skyrocketing costs, according to a new report released by the Student Public Interest Research Groups (Student PIRGs). With textbooks already amounting to a $700-$1000 yearly expense, the report criticizes publishers for offering yet another unaffordable option.