Welcome to The CITE -- a blog on Course materials, Innovation, and Technology in Education, created by Mark Nelson and now part of the Publications Department of the National Association of College Stores. CITE is a pun with multiple meanings - referring to cite as in citation, something people reference; site as in location, website, or place people go to; and sight as in foresight or looking ahead to what is coming. Comments, discussion, feedback and ideas are welcome.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Students Wait to Get Books, or Don't at All

Most college students aren’t fully prepared to dig into their coursework on the first day of class. In a new survey of 500 students, 72% said they held off on acquiring some course materials until after the course was underway and 27% never bothered to get materials at all for at least one course.

The majority of students indicated cost was the reason for not obtaining their course materials before classes started. The survey was conducted in May by Wakefield Research for VitalSource Technologies, a provider of digital textbooks.

NACS’ latest Student Watch survey, conducted in spring 2016, found very similar results in a study of almost 17,000 college students. In both surveys, students said they resorted to a variety of strategies in order to afford their materials, including sharing them with others taking the same class, which can create complications for effective studying and doing assignments.

In the Wakefield study, respondents also liked the idea of folding the cost of course materials into tuition, with 77% overall showing support for the concept.

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