Are Private Universities Exempt from Student Concerns About Textbook Costs? A Survey of Students at American University

Lindsay Renee Murphy, David Rose

Abstract


A survey conducted in the fall of 2015 at American University in Washington, DC shows that rising textbook prices similarly affect students at an expensive private university as those at community colleges and state schools. Research on high textbook costs that has demonstrated corollary unwanted behavior changes in students, including not purchasing the book, resorting to illegal online downloads, and poor study habits, were confirmed at American University as well. Solutions that have been proposed to this problem of prohibitive textbook prices, including Open Educational Resources (OER), could have an equally profound impact at American University, and potentially similar private universities, as has been demonstrated at less selective and more affordable counterparts.


Keywords


Textbooks; cost; higher education; OER; open educational resources

Full Text:

HTML PDF XML

References


Altbach, P. G., Kelly, G. P., Petrie, H. G., & Weis, L. (Ed.). (1991). Textbooks in American society: Politics, policy, and pedagogy. New York: State University of New York Press.

American University (2018). 2017–2018 Cost of Attendance (Before Aid). Retrieved from https://www.american.edu/financialaid/index.cfm

Bliss, T., Hilton, J., Wiley, D., Thanos, K. (2013). The cost and quality of open textbooks: Perceptions of community college faculty and students. First Monday, 18(1).

Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2014). Consumer Price Index (CPI) Databases. Retrieved from http://www.bls.gov/cpi/data.htm

College Board. (2017). Trends in College Pricing 2017. Retrieved from https://trends.collegeboard.org/sites/default/files/2017-trends-in-college-pricing_0.pdf

Fischer, L., Hilton III, J., Robinson, T.J., Wiley, D. (2015). A multi-institutional study of the impact of open textbook adoption on the learning outcomes of post-secondary students. Journal of Computing in Higher Education, 27(3), 159–172. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12528-015-9101-x

Florida Virtual Campus (2016). 2016 Florida Student Textbook & Course Materials Survey. Tallahassee, FL. Retrieved from http://www.openaccesstextbooks.org/pdf/2016_Florida_Student_Textbook_Survey.pdf

Hill, P. (2015a). Asking What Students Spend On Textbooks Is Very Important, But Insufficient. e-Literate. Retrieved from https://mfeldstein.com/asking-what-students-spend-on-textbooks-isvery-important-but-insufficient/

Hill, P. (2015b). How Much Do College Students Actually Pay For Textbooks? e-Literate. Retrieved from https://mfeldstein.com/how-much-do-college-students-actually-pay-for-textbooks/

Hilton, J. & Laman, C. (2012). One college’s use of an open psychology textbook. Open Learning: The Journal of Open and Distance Learning, 27(3), 201–217. https://doi.org/10.1080/02680513.2012.716657

Hilton, J., Gaudet, D., Clark, P., Robinson, J., & Wiley, D. (2013). The adoption of open educational resources by one community college math department. The International Review of Research in Open and Distance Learning, 14(4), 37–50. http://dx.doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v14i4.1523

Hilton III, J. L., Robinson, T. J., Wiley, D., & Ackerman, J. D. (2014). Cost-savings achieved in two semesters through the adoption of open educational resources. The International Review of Research in Open and Distributed Learning, 15(2). http://dx.doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v15i2.1700

Hilton, J. (2016). Open educational resources and college textbook choices: a review of research on efficacy and perceptions. Educational Technology Research and Development 64(4), 573–590. https://doi.org/10.1007/s11423-016-9434-9

Ikahihifo, T., Spring, K., Rosecrans, J., & Watson, J. (2017). Assessing the Savings from Open Educational Resources on Student Academic Goals. The International Review Of Research In Open And Distributed Learning, 18(7). http://dx.doi.org/10.19173/irrodl.v18i7.2754

Lowe, I. (2009). What is a textbook? Vinculum, 46(1), 17–20.

National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) (2016). Table 303.10. Total fall enrollment in degree-granting postsecondary institutions, by attendance status, sex of student, and control of institution: Selected years, 1947 through 2026. Retrieved from https://nces.ed.gov/programs/digest/d16/tables/dt16_303.10.asp

Open Education Group (2018). The COUP Framework. Retrieved from http://openedgroup.org/coup

Rowell, J. L. (2015). Student Perceptions: Teaching and Learning with Open Educational Resources. Electronic Theses and Dissertations. Paper 2545. Retrieved from http://dc.etsu.edu/etd/2545.

Senack, E. (2014). Fixing the Broken Textbook Market: How Students Respond to High Textbook Costs and Demand Alternatives. The Student PIRGs. Retrieved from http://www.studentpirgs.org/textbooks

Stein, S., Hart, S., Keaney, P., & White, R. (2017). Student Views on the Cost of and Access to Textbooks: An Investigation at University of Otago (New Zealand). Open Praxis, 9(4), 403–419. http://dx.doi.org/10.5944/openpraxis.9.4.704

Wiley, D., Williams, L., DeMarte, D., & Hilton, J. (2016). The Tidewater Z-Degree and the INTRO Model for Sustaining OER Adoption. Education Policy Analysis Archives, 24(41), pp.1–12.

Williams, J. H. (2014). (Re)constructing memory. School textbooks, identity, and the pedagogies and politics of imagining community. In J. H. Williams (Ed.). (Re)Constructing memory: School textbooks and the imagination of the nation (pp. vii–ix). Rotterdam: Sense Publishers.




DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5944/openpraxis.10.3.866

Refbacks

  • There are currently no refbacks.