Student government takes a look at online book formats


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The UNK Student Government discussed the Antelope Bookstore in the Nebraska Student Union at its weekly meeting last Tuesday.

The meeting discussed different operating models for the library.

“We worked with three different vendors looking at various models they offer,” said Michael Christen, director of sales. “There is a very strong push towards going digital. We always say our students appreciate a physical book, but we want to know exactly how valuable that physical format is. »

Christen is looking to see if different book formats are more beneficial for specific students.

“We want to know if there are certain classes where a physical book is better,” Christen said. “Or if it’s just general studies classes when students prefer physical books or even if it’s different from major to major.”

Student Body Government discussed what they value in digital and physical formats.

“In education, all-digital is a perfect fit for me,” said one student. “I feel like all of my classes would be fine with only digital format books. The only one I would need a physical book in would be math, I think that would be better for that type of content.

Other members of student body government agreed that sometimes a physical book can be more convenient.

“I like having a book so I’m going to use it every day, especially in my biology class,” said another student. “If I search for the same book over and over again, it would be easier to have a physical book rather than an ebook.”

Ultimately, there is a determining factor for students when it comes to format preferences.

“When I’m looking for a book, I’ll buy whatever is cheapest,” said one student. “Whether it’s digital, physical or from the on-campus bookstore or other vendors.”

The average student at UNK pays about $500 for books each semester if they buy through Antelope Bookstore, according to Christen. If it is decided to go with an online provider, the cost of renting or buying used and new books would decrease.

“With the templates we received from the various vendors, we saw an average of $15 to $30 per credit hour for digital documents,” Christen said. “That would be a total of $45 to $90 per class for textbooks. This cost would be included in the course fee.

The student body government has expressed concern for students who decide to purchase their textbooks elsewhere.

“Some providers say it will be offered on a course-by-course basis, others say students must opt-in or opt-out entirely,” Christen said. “It is federal law that we have an opt-out option if we decide to implement this program. Students will have the choice to decide what suits them best. »


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