News
News Home
Quick Bites
Exploradio
News Archive
News Channel
Special Features
NPR
nowplaying
On AirNewsClassical
Loading...
  
School Closings
WKSU Support
Funding for WKSU is made possible in part through support from the following businesses and organizations.

Don Drumm Studios

NOCHE


For more information on how your company or organization can support WKSU, download the WKSU Media Kit.

(WKSU Media Kit PDF icon )


Donate Your Vehicle to WKSU

Programs Schedule Make A Pledge Member BenefitsFAQ/HelpContact Us
Ohio


Ohio college students struggle to pay for tuition and textbooks
Some students are sharing, going without or taking advantage of 'open textbooks'
by WKSU's STATEHOUSE CORRESPONDENT JO INGLES


Reporter
Jo Ingles
 
Courtesy of Stephen Cummings, Creative Commons
Download (WKSU Only)
In The Region:
Paying for college is a struggle for many Ohio students. And it’s not just the high cost of tuition that is difficult. A new study shows the high cost of books for classes has some students making tough decisions. Ohio Public Radio’s Jo Ingles reports on what students are doing to afford the books they need for classes.
Ohio college students struggle with paying for tuition and for textbooks

Other options:
Windows Media / MP3 Download (4:00)


It’s mid-afternoon on a cold day at Ohio Wesleyan University in Delaware. Students can be seen walking throughout campus with backpacks full of books. But for many students, getting those books isn’t easy. Senior Vince Donofrio says it’s always tough to come up with the texts required for classes in his major. 

He estimates economics texts run $200 to $300 each, "which is insane. And the worst part is that we don’t even use them much of the time.”

Junior Blake Adkins says getting books for his classes have requires him to become a savvy shopper. 

“I usually try to buy online at Amazon, or somewhere like eBay isn’t bad. ... I’ve seen books for probably a couple of hundred bucks through the bookstore but on Amazon it will be $80 to $100 max.”

Some students, such as senior Jason Lonnemann, cut the cost by trying to buy them with someone else in the same class. They split the price, "and then at the end of the semester, we usually sell them back and split the revenues from that.”

Senior Alyssa DeRobertis sats she gets all her texts at the library.

Sacrificing grades
But Bryan Stewart with the Ohio Public Interest Research Group’s Education Fund says many students are not lucky enough to find ways to borrow or share books. And he says a new survey by his group shows students who need books they can’t afford are trying to decide which grades they'll sacrifice because they can't do the required reading. 

“You have three or four books assigned for a class. And you look and say, ‘Well, I’ve only got about 50 pages of that book assigned for a class and it’s $40, so maybe I’ll be able to borrow it, maybe I won’t. I’ll take that hit.’”

Stewart says students often decide which classes to take based on the cost of books. And that can cause problems iif the student doesn’t have the required courses as they near graduation. Stewart says sometimes students can sell their books back for other students to use but often times, they get just pennies on the dollar. 

A new option cis called “open textbooks."

“It’s actually a pretty new concept. It’s a faculty written, peer-reviewed book. It’s similar to any traditional textbook you’ve seen. It’s published in a way that anybody can download them off the internet and they don’t have some sort of expiration date when you can download them or only print a certain amount.”

Stewart says the fact is there simply are not enough of these open textbooks now, so students are often left to scramble for money to pay for their books. The College Board estimates students are spending an average of $1,200 on books and supplies this year – about 14 percent of the cost of tuition at a four-year public college and 39 percent of tuition at a two-year community college.

Grant money is often doled out in a way that it applies only to tuition, leavign nothing to pay for living expenses and books.

Ohio PIRG says the best way to lower the cost of textbooks is to take control away from big publishing companies. It's calling on lawmakers and faculty at college campuses to adopt their own open textbook initiatives.
Add Your Comment
Name:

Location:

E-mail: (not published, only used to contact you about your comment)


Comments:




 
Page Options

Print this page

E-Mail this page / Send mp3

Share on Facebook




Stories with Recent Comments

Lordstown GM plant plans to install 8,500 solar panels
How much will this solar array cost? How is it being funded, and who is really paying for it? How much real useful electricity will it actually produce in MEh p...

Local Ebola concerns cause officials to pay more attention to West Africa
I have a better idea, let's secure our borders and spend those billions of dollars on our own first.

HUD and Cuyahoga Land Bank extend a housing deal for another year
Need to sale lot, and would like to know how to contact someone to see if they may be interested in the property that sat between two lots. If you can give me...

Akron Beacon Journal details abuse claims against televangelist Angley
In the early 90's I went forth for pray. And the man was anointed by the hand of God. Just a fact I will never forget

Lawmaker questions why a million voters didn't get absentee applications
He's a damn lie! I vote n all elections. I missed 1. Haven't gotten my absentee ballot and their making it hard to get one.

Thirsty Dog Brewery warns it might have to leave Akron
Why is it the city's responsibility to find this guy a location? There are a hundred realestate companies that could help him.

Kent State sends home three after contact with second Ebola-stricken nurse
Why weren't all health workers who were around Duncan quaranteened for 21 days and tested for Ebola? That's a no-brainer. Why was Vinson allowed to travel right...

New book says Willoughby Coal is haunted...and that's good for business
Would love to see a series of books that would just thrill me. I cannot wait to visit some of the locations. And revisit some of the locations I have already vi...

Cleveland Indians to continue with 'dynamic pricing'
pricing is too high for a family as well as people like me who are on a fixed income. Bleacher seats are cheaper but concessions are rediculous.

Kasich talks about faith, drugs and education -- but never FitzGerald
The idea that you can learn more by talking to a 90 year old person than from a history book is just another example of how the GOP hates education and knowledg...

Copyright © 2014 WKSU Public Radio, All Rights Reserved.

 
In Partnership With:

NPR PRI Kent State University

listen in windows media format listen in realplayer format Car Talk Hosts: Tom & Ray Magliozzi Fresh Air Host: Terry Gross A Service of Kent State University 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. NPR Senior Correspondent: Noah Adams Living on Earth Host: Steve Curwood 89.7 WKSU | NPR.Classical.Other smart stuff. A Service of Kent State University