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New Survey shows that the high cost of college textbooks continues to undermine student success

Posted by Ariane Rasmussen on January 31, 2017

University of West Florida survey reveals that textbook affordability continues to be a key determining factor in student preparedness and academic success.

The results of a recently released survey, “2016 Student Textbook and Course Materials Survey Report” conducted by the Office of Distance Learning and Student Services of the University of West Florida’s Virtual Campus, shows that the high costs of college textbooks and course materials continues to undermine student access, student preparedness and academic succesUWF Survey Picture.pngs.

Out of the 22,000+ Florida students surveyed, over half of them (66.6 %) said they did not purchase the required textbooks for their courses because they were too costly. A lack of access to affordable course materials led to a decrease in student preparedness for courses with 57.4 percent of UWF students saying they either failed a course or earned a poor grade because they couldn’t afford to purchase the required textbooks (37.6% earned a poor grade; 19.8% failed a course).

Similarly, a nationwide 2016 survey conducted on behalf of Akademos (see our College Student Survey Results Exclusive White Paper) found that 39% of the students surveyed have taken a course without the required materials because they’re too expensive and 40% of them indicated that they only purchase “some or none” of their required course materials. In addition, 60% of these students said they think they would have performed better in their courses if they’d only had the required materials.

The UWF survey also suggested that time to graduation is being negatively impacted by a lack of access to affordable textbooks with 47.6% of students reporting that they “occasionally or frequently” take fewer courses because of it; 45.5% do not register for a course at all; 26.1% drop a course and 20.7% withdraw from courses. The Akademos nationwide survey found that 12% of students opted not to register for a class or dropped a class due to high course materials costs. Fewer classes equal a longer road to graduation and a decrease in college and university completion rates.

Another interesting conclusion drawn from the UWF survey is that financial aid coverage for textbook costs has actually gone down since their 2012 survey; 70.7% of students reported that they received financial aid in Spring 2016 in contrast to 75% of students in 2012. The survey also revealed that out of the 70.7 percent of students receiving financial aid, approximately one-third of them (29.2%) reported that their financial aid covered “none” of their textbooks costs.

According to the 2016 Akademos student survey, over half of students report being “dissatisfied” or “extremely dissatisfied” with the cost of textbooks at their institution. With the high prices of course materials at the forefront of student minds, it’s important for institutions to offer their students greater access to lower cost options at their school-sanctioned bookstore. For a resource on solutions for college bookstores that addresses textbook affordability, accessibility and student success, click here to request our exclusive Future-Proof Your College Bookstore eBook.

Request the exclusive eBook

To request more information visit info.akademos.com/learn-more

Topics: Textbook Affordability, Academic Success, Textbook Accessibility

Akademos & University of Great Falls Partner to Lower Textbook Costs

Posted by Natassia Tanaka on November 29, 2016

The Akademos online bookstore solution will offer UGF students significant textbook savings while enabling faculty to easily evaluate and adopt low-cost course material options

University of Great Falls (UGF) has joined Akademos' fast-growing list of partner schools. University of Great Falls, a private, Roman Catholic, liberal arts university based in Great Falls, Montana, offers associate, bachelor’s and master’s degrees through both onsite and distance learning.UGF logo-1.jpg

Starting Spring semester 2017, UGF students can shop for textbooks in new, used, rental and eBook formats on any device using a custom-branded version of the mobile-optimized Akademos online bookstore. Students can save an average of 60% off the list price of their course materials using Akademos’ exclusive marketplace of over 18 million unique titles.

The next-generation Akademos online shopping platform will be fully integrated with UGF’s student information system (SIS), enabling students to see a personalized listing of the textbooks required for their courses and order books for an entire term in less than five minutes. Students will also be able to seamlessly apply financial aid to their course material purchases.The online storefront will become UGF’s exclusive school-sanctioned bookstore, with the campus store selling items including spirit wear and general merchandise.

In addition, the Akademos Adoption & Analytics Portal will increase adoption process efficiency by enabling administrators to track textbook adoption progress across individual departments and the entire system. It will also make it easy for faculty to select affordable, high-quality books by providing visibility into the real-time prices for course materials in multiple formats, and enabling faculty to receive personal consultations on alternative, low-cost learning materials.

“Partnering with Akademos enables us to offer our students the lowest possible textbook costs by providing them with access to a vast selection of affordable used, rental and eBook materials through the Akademos peer-to-peer Marketplace,” said Stacey Eve, vice president for finance and human resources at UGF. “Additionally, Akademos’ Adoption & Analytics Portal allows us to significantly streamline our currently manua ltextbook adoption process and arm our faculty with tools and services that can further improve textbook affordability for our students.”

“In order to effectively compete with low-cost online retailers and better support academic success, institutions are transitioning to new, sustainable bookstore models that serve students, faculty and other stakeholders now and in the future,” said John Squires, chief executive officer, Akademos. “By moving to a new bookstore model that facilitates the sale of low-cost textbooks and supports a profitable on-campus general merchandise store, University of Great Falls will provide its students, administration, faculty and alumni with the best of both worlds.”

Learn more about how Akademos can help your institution significantly improve textbook affordability for students.

 

Topics: Company News, Textbook Affordability

Future-Proof Your College Bookstore - Exclusive Akademos eBook Now Available

Posted by Natassia Tanaka on November 17, 2016

New eBook provides valuable insights on bookstore models that address and support textbook textbook affordability, accessibility and student success.

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Today, we announced the release of an exciting new eBook highlighting bookstore models that help institutions better meet the growing student demands for lower-cost textbooks, more choice and greater convenience. The eBook uncovers new insights into how the bookstore plays a pivotal role in a future-proof course materials strategy that can effectively compete with low-cost thrird party websites and support an institution’s transition to digital learning materials.

This new eBook, which is available for free, explores:
  • The primary reasons institutions are moving to new bookstore models
  • Key factors to consider when selecting a new model
  • Several future-proof bookstore models offering long-term financial stability
  • Tips for ensuring a successful transition to a new bookstore

The eBook delivers many actionable recommendations administrators and campus shop operators can use as a resource to help transition to a sustainable, future-proof model.

“The internet and mobile technology have completely transformed the way educational materials are produced, purchased, delivered and consumed. This new eBook provides key insights to help colleges and universities select a future-proof model that is right for their unique needs,” said John Squires, chief executive officer, Akademos. “Through its experience supporting hundreds of institutions across the country, Akademos has seen first-hand how college bookstores need to transform into an educational platform and best-in-class service that directly supports an institution’s core mission of driving student success.”

Request the exclusive eBook

 

Topics: Textbook Affordability, New Bookstore Models

Akademos & Beaufort County Community College Partner to Improve Textbook Affordability

Posted by Lauren LaFronz on October 27, 2016

The Akademos online bookstore and marketplace will offer BCCC students significant savings on course materials while providing the convenience of anytime, anywhere ordering

Beaufort County Community College (BCCC) has joined Akademos' fast-growing list of partner schools. BCCC, a public institution based in Washington, North Carolina, provides aBCCC Gulls Logo in Blue.jpgssociate degree, diploma, certificate and continuing education programs for Arts and Sciences, Business/Industry and Allied Health. These programs are designed to help students transfer to a four-year college or go directly into the workforce, as well as serve individuals that simply wish to advance their skills.

Starting Spring Term 2017, BCCC students can shop for textbooks in new, used, rental and eBook formats on any device using a custom-branded version of the mobile-optimized Akademos online bookstore. Students can save an average of 60% off the list price of their course materials using Akademos’ exclusive marketplace of over 18 million unique titles.

The next-generation Akademos online shopping platform will be fully integrated with BCCC’s student information system (SIS), enabling students to see a personalized listing of the textbooks required for their courses and order books for an entire term in less than five minutes. Students will also be able to seamlessly apply financial aid to their course material purchases.

“The high cost of course materials was making it increasingly difficult for us to fulfill our mission to provide our students with an accessible and affordable education,” said Mark Nelson, vice president of administration, BCCC. “Partnering with Akademos enables us to bring down student costs by providing our students with an unmatched selection of affordable course materials in a wide variety of formats and purchase options.”

“Our unique marketplace and e-commerce platform will provide BCCC students with the choice, value and convenience they demand,” said John Squires, chief executive officer, Akademos. “We’re looking forward to working with BCCC to provide their students with a highly personalized and intuitive course material ordering experience.”

Learn more about how Akademos can help your institution significantly improve textbook affordability for students.

 

Topics: Company News, Textbook Affordability

Akademos Launches New Curriculum Development Service for College Faculty

Posted by Lauren LaFronz on September 21, 2016

Partnership with NobleStream provides faculty with individual consultations for the selection of innovative, low-cost learning materials

Akademos has launched a custom curriculum development service for college faculty that helps institutions improve textbook affordability and educational outcomes.Akademos_Curriculum_Services_logo.jpg

Akademos Curriculum Services™ provides faculty with personal consultations on new learning models and course material choices that support faculty and student success by improving access to alternative, low-cost options. Through a strategic partnership with education consulting firm NobleStream, faculty at Akademos’ 120+ partner institutions can engage with NobleStream course advisors and explore opportunities to use unique courseware from best-in-class educational providers. Key features include:

  • Discovery of solution providers in the Akademos Adoption & Analytics Portal with easy “one-click” faculty scheduling for consultations

  • Custom course pricing options that dramatically reduce costs while providing high-quality digital course materials and relevant, advanced instructional products

  • One-stop access to a suite of innovative educational solution providers including Fulcrum Labs, Lrnr, MindEdge, panOpen, uCertify and many more to help faculty evaluate and select the most appropriate resources for meeting their learning objectives

“We’ve had a profound impact on reducing students’ costs by providing them more affordable purchase options, including our unique educational marketplace,” said Akademos CEO John Squires. “In addition, our advanced faculty software and services dramatically improve the speed and accuracy of course material adoptions. Now, through our partnership with NobleStream, we’ve added a vital resource to course material discovery that informs faculty about new materials that can improve the classroom experience and significantly lower student costs.”

“Akademos is a leader in creating value for colleges and universities, and we are delighted to extend their reach by playing an active role in helping faculty drive student and institutional success,“ said NobleStream Managing Partner Howard Weiner. “NobleStream’s portfolio of educational companies are innovators in instructional design, and they are ideally-matched to provide custom solutions for Akademos partner institutions.”

To request more information visit info.akademos.com/learn-more

Topics: Company News, Textbook Affordability

Webinar Materials Available: Proven Strategies for Addressing Textbook Affordability

Posted by Lauren LaFronz on August 11, 2016

We've received a lot of positive feedback from college and university administrators who attended Tuesday's webinar on proven strategies for addressing textbook affordability. The event featured an insightful discussion with Davenport University and Roanoke College about how they've used new college bookstore strategies to lower textbook costs, improve bookstore sales and increase student satisfaction.

Request the webinar recording and presentation to hear how:recorded-webinar-textbook-affordability.png

  • Roanoke dropped its average book price from $119 to $38

  • Davenport increased bookstore utilization by 93%

  • Roanoke grew apparel sales 7% by transitioning its on-campus store into a spirit shop

  • Davenport enabled students to seamlessly apply financial aid to course material purchases

The webinar also reviews insights from our recent college student survey on course material purchasing and bookstore services.

Request the webinar materials

 

 

Topics: Webinars & Events, Textbook Affordability

Webinar to Share Proven Strategies for Addressing Textbook Affordability

Posted by Lauren LaFronz on July 28, 2016

Registration is now open for a new webinar featuring two progressive institutions that have successfully used new strategies to lower textbook costs, improve bookstore sales and increasedavenport-roanoke-vertical.jpg student satisfaction. 

Proven Strategies for Addressing Textbook Affordability, on August 9 from 2-3pm ET, will review insights from our recent college student survey on course material purchasing behavior and bookstore services, and discuss tactics that will:

  • Improve textbook affordability;
  • Increase student satisfaction and bookstore sales; and
  • Meet the growing demand for low-cost digital learning materials

The free live webinar features John Squires, CEO, Akademos with commentary from Paula Gleason-Zeeff, Director, Procurement & Retail Sales, Davenport University and Kristi Kirby, Textbook Coordinator, Roanoke College.

Register for the Webinar

Topics: Webinars & Events, Textbook Affordability

Akademos & Peru State Reduce Textbook Costs & Improve the Adoption Process

Posted by Lauren LaFronz on July 27, 2016

Akademos online marketplace saves students up to 60% off the list price of course materials

Peru State College, a public, four-year institution and Nebraska’s first college, has partnered with Akademos to significantly reduce textbook costs, improve the efficiency of the textbook adoption process and empower faculty to select affordable, high-quality course materials.peru-state-logo.jpg

Peru State students can now shop for textbooks in new, used, rental and eBook formats on any device using a custom-branded version of the mobile-optimized Akademos online bookstore. They save an average of 60% off the list price of course materials using Akademos’ exclusive marketplace of over 100 million new and used textbooks.

The Akademos online shopping platform is fully integrated with Peru State’s student information system (SIS), enabling students to see a personalized list of required textbooks and order books for an entire term in less than five minutes. Students can also seamlessly apply financial aid to their course material purchases. The online storefront has become Peru State’s exclusive school-sanctioned bookstore, with the campus store selling items including spirit wear and general merchandise.

In addition, the Akademos Adoption & Analytics Portal increases adoption process efficiency by enabling administrators to track textbook adoption progress across individual departments and the entire system. The Portal also makes it easy for faculty to select affordable, high-quality books by providing full visibility into textbook adoption history and real-time prices for course materials in multiple formats.

“With more and more of our students choosing to purchase textbooks from third party websites, it became clear that transitioning to an online bookstore was the only way we could provide them with the savings, selection and convenience they demand,” comments Tim Borchers, vice president, academic affairs for Peru State College.“The Akademos college bookstore solution was the best choice for us because it offers our students unbeatable textbook prices and provides state-of-the-art adoption tools that drive process efficiencies while ensuring our faculty make cost-conscious adoption decisions.”

“Many institutions recognize that transitioning to an online bookstore improves textbook affordability, however, the impact that advanced adoption tools can have on textbook costs is often overlooked,” states John Squires, chief executive officer, Akademos. “By recognizing how providing faculty with information such as comparative pricing encourages the adoption of affordable course materials, Peru State is ahead of the game.”

Learn more about how Akademos can help your institution significantly lower textbook prices for students.

 

Topics: Company News, Textbook Affordability, Textbook Adoption

NACUBO Session Recording Available: The Hybrid College Bookstore Model

Posted by Lauren LaFronz on July 21, 2016

If textbook affordability is important to your institution and you're open to learning about new bookstore models, you'll want to request the recording of our interactive session with Labouré and Berea colleges from the 2016 NACUBO Annual Meeting.

This well-attended session, which received a lot of positive feedback, covers how the new hybrid college bookstore model reduces textbook costs, improves bookstore sales and increases student satisfaction. The recording and presentation materials can be requested by clicking here or on the button below.

The session covers how combining a school-sanctioned website with an on-campus shop can:

  • Improve textbook affordability, bookstore sales and the textbook purchasing experience

  • Provide the flexibility required to transition to new digital learning platforms and materials

  • Win back students by applying advanced technology best practices

Request Session Materials

If you attended the session and want additonal information about the hybrid bookstore model, contact us or request a copy of our hybrid bookstore model white paper.

Topics: Webinars & Events, Bookstore Sales, Textbook Affordability, New Bookstore Models

Akademos & Presentation College Launch Online Bookstore Offering Affordable Textbooks

Posted by Lauren LaFronz on July 19, 2016

Hybrid bookstore model enables Presentation to offer low-cost textbooks online and a wider selection of merchandise on campus

Akademos has partnered with Presentation College to launch an online bookstore website giving students access to a vast selection of low-cost textbooks along with a convenient, personalized and fast ordering experience. Presentation College, named to the President’s Honor Roll for Community Service, is an independent Catholic institution based in South Dakota with a focus on presentation-college.jpgthe education of health care professionals.

Presentation College is implementing the “hybrid bookstore model,” which enables the institution to offer all course materials through the low-cost online bookstore and leverage its on-campus shop to sell a wide variety of ”Spirit” wear and general merchandise.

Presentation students can shop for textbooks in new, used, rental and eBook formats from any device using a custom-branded version of the mobile-optimized Akademos online bookstore. Students save an average of 60% off the list price of their course materials using Akademos’ exclusive marketplace of over 100 million new and used textbooks.

The Akademos online shopping platform is scheduled to be fully integrated with Presentation’s student information system (SIS), which will enable students to see a personalized list of required textbooks and order books for an entire term in less than five minutes. Students will also be able to seamlessly apply financial aid to their course material purchases.

“Transitioning to a fully-virtual, low-cost bookstore with a marketplace was a natural choice given that most of our students are already accustomed to comparison shopping for just about everything on the internet,” stated Presentation College Vice President for Finance Cathy Hall. “The hybrid model allows us to significantly improve textbook affordability while maximizing the profitability of our on-campus shop by offering a wider selection of other items.”

“While price is and always will be a key driver behind where students choose to purchase their course materials, the results of our recent college student survey show that the importance of convenience should not be underestimated,” commented John Squires, chief executive officer, Akademos. “The Akademos online bookstore solution provides Presentation students with the ultimate textbook ordering experience by offering low prices and a high level of convenience in addition to a fully personalized course materials list.”

Learn more about how Akademos can help your institution significantly improve textbook affordability for students.

 

Topics: Company News, Textbook Affordability, New Bookstore Models