Students in college on average shell out about $900 just for their books each year. This year for those taking courses in business and economics may have a huge break. Flat World Knowledge is giving away texts.
The firm is based in Nyack, New York and aims to change the way students go to college. the texts though aren't like the ones at the local college bookstore. The offerings will be via the Internet with video and audio clips embedded.
Those are major advantages over paper editions, says Dana Lanham, an advertising professor at University of North Carolina in Charlotte. "Being online lets the content be so dynamic," says Lanham, who will teach some 70 students using Flat World texts this fall. "Usually textbooks are out of date as soon as you print them."
The firm will be offering the texts at at least 15 campuses across the nation. If the semester goes well then all academic institutions come this January will be able to offer the books.
Not all colleges will be on the bandwagon. Bookstores on campus bring in a nice chunk of change every term. That may soon change as states pass legislation to control the cost of textbooks. So far 34 states are on board at reducing the costs of books that their college students have to pay for.
Until lower costs are standard practice students have to become wiser when purchasing their books. In the past used textbooks was one way to combat the higher costs but schools are now having their texts tailor made for each course.
some students have to try to get through each year without ever buying a text.
If more text book companies go the way of Flat World Knowledge though students may demand that the cost of their textbooks be reduced. That may be the start of a revolution when it comes to higher education.