By Nicole Grimes
The constant question on a college student’s mind is, “Why are textbooks so expensive and why don’t I get at least half of what I paid for the book when I return it? Is there a way around spending all of this money?” I used to wonder this myself until I had the opportunity to speak with the bookstore manager Jeanne Wisler and a fellow coworker who were able to explain about the cost.
“We take what we are charged by the publisher, figure out our budget and mark it up so we only make a three percent profit. We are not part of the school we are actually a corporation that is located in the school,” Wisler said.
“The money you get back actually depends on the market for the book. We base it on whether the book is needed again, and if it will ever be needed again. This is why we ask the professors to get their book orders in early,” said Wisler.
If the money we get back for the books is minuscule, what are we supposed to do with textbooks we don’t need anymore and can’t sell back? You keep the textbooks in good condition, some people never even use the book, but there seems to be no hope for getting any of the money invested in the book back. Why is this?
“Books depend on copyright dates, not condition. The condition only plays a small part in the book’s value,” stated Wisler. The book store wants the students of Fitchburg State University to have the newest additions so the students are able to have the most current information.
There is a way to save money on textbooks and to avoid getting stuck with books you no longer need that Wisler was excited about. It’s called Digital Textbooks. These books are available anywhere there is internet service. You can read them on your phone, your laptop, or download the text onto either of these and work offline.
The cost of these textbooks is forty to sixty percent less than buying a regular text. You can take notes in them and share any kind of work with fellow students or professors within the text as well. Not sure about this new form of textbooks? You can try it for free for three days and see how you like it, and return them if they don’t suit your needs.
This will help in avoiding the long bookstore lines. It only takes a few seconds to click a button, buy the book, and start studying. No more waiting for books to be mailed, no more paying for extra things such as shipping or having to purchase the books new rather than used.
The bookstore is truly making every effort to help students save money and to make buying your textbooks as convenient as possible.