How to Go Green with College Textbooks

How to Go Green with College Textbooks

Written By

Chelsea Foy

One thing I remember being totally shocked by as a college freshman was the cost of textbooks. You figure you’ve got your tuition paid (phew!) and that’s that and then BOOM you owe another $500 for a few class texts. Not to mention, all those books necessitate lots of natural resources to create, print, and distribute. But there are plenty of new initiatives that can not only approach the textbook issue in a greener, more environmentally friendly way, but also save your family a little chunk of change in the meantime.

Rent Texts Oftentimes, you can find the text you need at a book rental site. Book Renter, Campus Book Rentals, and even Barnes and Noble have rental options so that books don’t get just tossed at the end of a semester.

Consider Used My college bookstore had a program facilitating the buying and reselling of used textbooks. If you didn’t mind slight wear, a used book was an economical and green option. At the end of the semester, if your texts were in good shape you could sell them back to the bookstore to make a bit of your money back. Then the next semester your book would go into rotation again, rather than having to use a whole new book. Check with your child’s bookstore, or online for a similar option.

Digital Downloads Many college courses are now foregoing physical textbooks in favor of downloadable content that students can store on their computers, tablets, or even smartphones. I know a professor who uses a digital textbook and docks students points if their technology is not charged for each class, to be able to access the book! Have your child inquire about digital download text options with professors.

Online Coursework With such incredible technology available to teachers, many are turning away from books and paper and running coursework online. Course info, texts, syllabi, and more live on the college or course website and can be accessed in any place that has an Internet connection.

With so many options, there’s no reason not to make an effort at greening up our college textbook procedures! Technology not only improves our school processes but can have a positive impact on our environment and our children’s education. Do you have kids heading off to college? Here’s hoping some of these tips come in handy for your family!