Textbooks: a must for success
Published: Wednesday, September 5, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, September 5, 2012 23:09
When it comes time to begin classes, all students need one thing; textbooks. Some students have the advantage of purchasing their books through scholarships; however, most are not that fortunate. Most students have to pay for their books with either money out of their own pocket, or funds from some kind of financial aid.
In the beginning of the current fall semester, the bookstores busiest days were the Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday of the first week of school. Virga West, the bookstore manager, estimates around 350 to 400 scholarship students pick up their books during this time each year.
“They [the students] were all really great and patient this semester,” West said, “We got ‘em in and out as fast as we could, very respectful and very nice students.”
Price of books can range anywhere from $6.95, which is the listing price of Intro to Conversational Spanish, to $362, which is the price for Anatomy and Physiology. All textbooks must be paid in full before students leave the store.
“It’s outrageous,” said Sergio Perez, a GCCC student. “I had $246 left over from everything else and even that wasn’t enough for four books I needed.”
For most students, the price of books is very surprising and sometimes overwhelming. West said the general response from students when learning the cost of textbooks is, “That book cost that much! Just about any kind of reaction you can think of . . . they’re pretty shocked a lot of times . . .” However, Jose Diaz thinks books are moderately priced. “I wasn’t too surprised to see the over all price of the textbooks,” he said.
Instead of buying, many students choose to rent their textbooks. At the end of the semester, students return the books to perform a “buyback”. Each book can be bought back from the previous user for no more than half the price of the original sale. If a book is damaged in any way, pending the judgment of West, the difference between the original price and rental price of the book must be paid. West says she tries to look over each buyback. “I try to look at it and if it’s not something I would pay a used price for, I don’t buy it back.” If students want to return textbooks rented only this year, they can receive a full discount on books if they are returned by Sept. 7.
West estimates the number of books that come back completely destroyed is about 1 percent.
Some books are accompanied with CD’s or access codes for online use. In certain textbooks, if the CD is missing or damaged, the book cannot be bought back.
“¬It just depends upon the book and how it’s used and what there is, so just kind of keep that in mind, it can change from book to book,” West said.
According to an article featured in The Chronicle of Higher Education, “Most access codes are good only for a limited time, and once they are activated they can’t be used by other students.” Situations like this can sometimes create complications. When students only need access codes, many times they must also purchase the book as part of a bundle.