Textbooks are modern robber barons

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The beginning fall semester marks the beginning a new school year, which means students need to buy supplies necessary for class: things like pens, pencils, paper, and binders. These items are usually cheap and reasonable. The real concern are textbooks.Textbooks prices are expensive, and resources provided by the library aren’t always reliable. The public would think that publishers would make textbooks more financially accessible for students, however,students end up leaving the bookstore feeling like someone still digesting that they were mugged in broad daylight.

Every year a new edition is published for most textbooks. A few new words equate to a higher price, and it’s not a coincidence. An article from Huffington Post asserted that, “Just five publishers control more than 80 percent of the market, meaning they can effectively lock out any competitors that try to undercut them.” In other words, their control over the supply/demand resembles a monopoly. The reason why Benjamin Franklin made a public library was to spread knowledge, not capitalize on it.

I personally spent about $855 for my textbooks in the first two years, but I found multiple solutions that helped decrease the cost.

One solution that students should consider is that some textbooks are put on hold at the library by professors. It’s usually easy to access this resource, however later in the year it becomes a hassle to obtain the textbook due to others also having a need for it because of midterms and research papers. Also, some professors use textbooks that are not accessible in the library.

Other solutions have also been created over the few past years. For example, pdf files, E-book, audio books, and photocopying classmate’s textbook. E-books are cheap and convenient if you’re a person who uses a lot of technology. Audiobooks are rarely unaccessible and help students who are auditory learners. All of these solutions were given to me by fellow classmates. Students become optimistic when they find others that are struggling in the same way, and help as much as you can.

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Textbooks are modern robber barons