Archive | Textbooks

Students battle high textbook prices with piracy

Cal State U. -Long Beach senior Julie Boll is $19,000 in debt. She had to sell her car and some of her wardrobe to pay her daily expenses. When the semester began, she realized textbooks were going to cost more than she expected — nearly $700 for the semester. With no money to spare, she turned to a solution that is becoming more popular with students: textbook piracy.

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Digital textbook choices expand with new interactive platform

Digital textbooks have become more than just a PDF version of the real thing. A new platform, CafeScribe, offers students an easier and more effective way of using digital textbooks.

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Embracing a new model for textbooks

Being prepared for class is painful. As students head back to lecture halls across the nation this fall, many will spend hundreds of dollars purchasing textbooks. The U. Wisconsin Office of Student Financial Aid website estimates that undergraduate students will spend $1,140 on books for the 2011-2012 academic year, a figure which continues to draw scrutiny to the business model of the bookstore.

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Column: Textbook industry fails students

Mark said he would buy the textbooks himself before the hurricane strikes. He strolled through the streets of New Brunswick, thinking about all the excitement the new semester would bring. He entered the bookstore and proceeded promptly to the basement, and then to the third aisle. He snatched up his French textbook, took a quick glimpse at the price tag and began to frown — $148.35. Shortly thereafter he learned that the textbook contains a one-time online access code and thus cannot be resold. Mark let out a big sigh, and slowly and hesitantly walked back upstairs.

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Study shows 7 in 10 students have forgone buying books

With college textbook costs totaling upwards of $500 per semester for some, many students have resorted to saying, “Enough is enough.” Some students have settled for other money-saving and practical ways to still take certain courses without actually owning the required text.

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Editorial: Make textbooks affordable to all

As we all get our fall semester started, there’s one website looking to prey on students that are having a hard time affording their textbooks. A new website, LibraryPirate, has sent letters to several news outlets calling on students to make digital scans of their printed textbooks and post them for free online, according to the Chronicle of Higher Education.

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The pros and cons of textbook rental

After paying tuition, housing, student fees and more, students then face another significant blow to their wallet:  paying, on average, more than $500 for their textbooks every semester, according to the College Board.  Textbook rental programs, fairly new on both on campus and on the Internet, allow students to save a lot of that money. [...]

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Medical app slices textbook costs

Hey UCF medical students, instead of lugging around a heavy textbook, how about pulling the contents up on your phone? There’s an app for that. Renal Physiology, a digital textbook application created by Dr. Jonathan Kibble, an associate professor of physiology at UCF, launched on April 19 as a less-expensive, high-tech alternative. The launch is the culmination of a project started two years ago by Kibble and David Rogers, founder and CEO of Allogy Interactive, the Orlando-based mobile application developer.

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Facebook chooses Farid’s photo-recognition, anti-child pornography tool

Facebook became the first online service to implement PhotoDNA — a photo recognition software developed by computer science professor Hany Farid in 2008 to quickly identify images of child pornography circulated on the web — to target illegal photos and their distributors, Facebook announced on May 19. Farid, who teamed up with Microsoft three years ago to develop PhotoDNA, said he is happy his tool is being used to “disrupt the global flow of child pornography.”

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Professors aim to rein in textbook prices

Professors have until Friday to place orders for fall semester’s textbooks, bringing with that deadline the challenge of securing a good deal for students. That wasn’t always a focus, said biochemistry professor Paul Siliciano. “We were leaving untapped the power of the competitive marketplace,” he said, particularly given the school’s size. He said that when publishing company representatives presented new books to professors, their price was rarely mentioned.

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