Students should not be responsible for textbook costs

February 4, 2022

After the first week of the semester, my bank account does not look pretty.

It’s not because I’m back on campus spending money on frivolous items and late night DoorDash, it’s the ridiculous cost of the textbooks I bought for my classes. 

With an already high tuition, textbook costs should not fall on students.

UVM’s in-state tuition plus room and board estimates to $32,244, while out-of-state reaches $57,244, according to UVM’s Student Financial Services.

Spending another few hundred dollars on textbooks may seem minuscule compared to the large cost of tuition, but it leaves students feeling stressed. 

All students should have access to learning materials for classes they already pay between $16,280 and $41,280 to take. 

As a Spanish and secondary education double major, I only spent around $100 on books this semester. 

However, sophomore Alexander Boehm, a mechanical engineering major, said he spent roughly $300 on textbooks this semester.

These textbooks could be useful to him in the future, Boehm said, however, most of his textbooks are online and are accessed through a subscription. When the semester ends, he will lose access to these books.

Similar to Boehm’s dilemma, some courses require students to purchase digital access codes, which students cannot resell at the end of the semester.

I took Human Biology last semester which required me to purchase an access code to complete homework assignments. I paid around $100 to complete four homework assignments for the course.

I shouldn’t have to pay extra money to complete any of my assignments.

Textbooks should be covered by the University so students do not have to pay more than the already expensive tuition fee.

UVM should provide a resource for course materials.

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