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Textbook and Course Materials Selection

Strategies to Reduce Textbook and Course Materials Costs

Consider these strategies when making selections:

  • Consider adopting the least expensive versions, taking into account the availability of e-textbooks and book rentals.
  • Reach consensus with other faculty who teach the same course to use the same textbook for multiple sections of a course, or decide on a small pool of materials that faculty can select from. This will increase the chance students can sell their book back at the end of the semester.
  • Longer adoption periods allow students to sell their used textbooks back to the STLCC Bookstore and allows subsequent students to purchase used books. 
  • Consider how bundled books and materials affect the cost to students and whether all parts of the bundle are useful. Only adopt those portions that will be used in your course and that students can sell back at the end of the term. 
  • Custom editions of print materials should only be adopted when they present a lower cost for students. 
  • Discuss the use of course packs and/or readers for your course with the STLCC Bookstore manager on your campus, being careful to observe fair use and copyright laws. 
  • Research the availability of Open Educational Resources (OER) and their applicability to your course as primary or supplemental material. 
  • Use library resources and reserve systems to make information available to students whenever possible.
  • Some ebook collections in the Libraries allow for unlimited simultaneous users. Consult with a librarian to find out if there may be something suitable for your textbook.
  • Request free library copies of textbooks from publishing companies to make available for free through the campus library. 
  • Ask publishers about student support for digital content and known technical issues before making a decision to adopt. 
  • Investigate whether the publisher/vendor makes accessible materials available; this reduces costs and time delays on the back end. 

St. Louis Community College Libraries

Florissant Valley Campus Library
3400 Pershall Rd.
Ferguson, MO 63135-1408
Phone: 314-513-4514

Forest Park Campus Library
5600 Oakland
St. Louis, MO 63110-1316
Phone: 314-644-9210

Meramec Campus Library
11333 Big Bend Road
St. Louis, MO 63122-5720
Phone: 314-984-7797

Wildwood Campus Library
2645 Generations Drive
Wildwood, MO 63040-1168
Phone: 636-422-2000