Home Book retailers How Classes Are Hurting Your Wallet Once The Bill Is Paid – Amherst Wire

How Classes Are Hurting Your Wallet Once The Bill Is Paid – Amherst Wire


Whether you acquire all of your textbooks weeks before the start of the semester, during the first week of class, bit by bit throughout the semester, or not at all, textbook affordability remains a rather concerning hurdle to overcome each year for students. The cost of tuition and fees for a single academic year for a full-time in-state undergraduate student is $16,952 which includes a technology fee and a student activity fee. Depending on a student’s private lessons, additional textbooks and materials are needed to participate and prepare for their lessons. Without these additional documents, a student may already fall behind in their first month of classes or face further setbacks as they progress through the semester.

While some professors send their programs weeks before the start of the semester, many students consult their programs several days before the start of their classes. Then it’s a race against the clock and against the other students to gather all the necessary materials for several courses. Limited copies of textbooks are quickly loaned out to all nearby libraries while independent bookstores are teeming with students trying to find what they need. However, what does a student do when all of these resources fail? When local, online, and major book retailers are out of stock or just too expensive for students, where can a student turn?

According to Education Data Initiativea group of data resources aimed at studying the rising costs of higher education, the average cost a student pays each year for books and supplies is between $628 and $1,471. Although not all students need to purchase multiple textbooks and additional materials for their classes, a single textbook can cost a student $105.37.

In my personal experience as an English major, textbooks add up, regardless of their individual price. Most of the books I’ve had to buy can be found used for less than $10 because they’re often in the public domain, but that makes them pretty much useless to try to resell. Newly published books from the past decade can still be hard to find, and some teachers need specific editions that can be hard to find at an affordable price. It is therefore extremely difficult to access all these books through the library system or to find them in local bookstores.

While a student should be prepared to pay extra for their individual lessons, why is it so expensive to learn in a course that already costs hundreds of dollars? Why are textbooks and teaching resources not affordable for many students, but still needed every year?

At a time when there are so many online resources and databases available and photocopiers in most academic institutions, why is the cost of education still so unreasonably high in institutions that claim to be fighting for the inclusion and equity? Especially when students who depend on financial aidare first generation and/or are members of minority groups may face more barriers than their peers in obtaining such documents.

Although this has been a problem that students have faced for decades, there are things that can be done now to help students in need. Instructors can review the total cost of the materials assigned to them to determine whether or not they are affordable for students. They can also provide online resources and printed materials to ensure that all students have access to the lesson. Teachers can also use Umass Library course reserves to ensure that every student enrolled in their class can use the school’s resources. Students can also contact the Umass Library or visit their acquire help page to review specific questions posed by other peers at any time. Students cannot get the most out of their education until professors change the affordability of their classroom materials.