No Textbooks, No Problem!

Project Timeline:The first couple weeks at the beginning of every semester
• At the beginning of each semester professors will let students know whether or not they are responsible for downloading a certain e-book for their class, but books can be downloaded instantaneously at any point in the semester

I think we all can agree that it’s about time to upgrade those over-priced, back breaking traditional textbooks. They have been a major expense for students (we’re talking hundreds of dollars) for too long now. E-books are a less expensive alternative to textbooks. Students will receive their e-books either through the school or online through the publisher’s website. They are quickly downloaded directly to a laptop which most students already carry around every day. The first weeks of school will no longer be spent waiting in long lines to pick up books, and workers won’t have to spend long hours trying to help students. Some e-books come with interactive features and you can highlight or annotate with your keyboard in the margins. Not only will millions of trees be saved but e-books are extremely portable and take up less space and weight in backpacks, which is a huge benefit for students. Many colleges are taking steps towards using all e-books and it can even be used in many other educational institutions.
Project Budget: e-book’s cost is about 50% less than the traditional text book, the school would most likely pay a fee for the license so they can distribute the e-book to students, or the books are available online for purchase by students.


7 thoughts on “No Textbooks, No Problem!

  1. While I am all for the reduction in paper waste and saving money, I think think that supplying ONLY e books may be troublesome. While most students have laptops or tablets, some do not, and purchasing a quality device to read and study from may be way over student’s budget. I personally do not enjoy reading off of a screen, i generally need to print out online readings to adequately study them. Maybe offering students an option to opt out of a physical book, but still provide them with a free/cheap version of the text online would be helpful.


  2. Yes, that is a great idea! Students are having to pay way too much for textbooks and there are times when a student buys a textbook only to use it once or twice and then sell it back for half of what they paid. If this is something you are really interested in I would suggest you look into It is an organization I am currently interning for and they have done a campaign for cheaper textbooks before and I’m sure would be happy to work with you on perhaps starting another campaign including some of your ideas!


  3. I do think this is a great idea for reducing paper use and saving money. Technology continues to advance, so why shouldn’t our school reading materials? However, I agree with alexnarrajos. Not everyone can afford a laptop or tablet, and personally I find it’s useful to have a textbook to read rather than a screen. It’s also useful to take notes in a textbook, highlighting key points (or using post-its if it’s a used book….)

    With that said, I do think it would be sustainable to have e-books available for ALL textbooks, so students are given the choice of using one or the other. I’m sure if students had online access to any book they may need, most would rather use an e-book for a cheaper price–thus, fewer printed copies of textbooks would be needed.


  4. I do understand that the reduction of paper is important and by reducing amount of paper we use for books will cut down the amount of trees that are destroyed but I found a study that says 92% of students would rather use paper books. This made me wonder if we convert to e-books entirely would it effect the learning style of students. What if the students who once did well would start doing poorly by not having paper books. I know this sounds like an unintelligent question but I do think that is something to consider if we do decide to convert to e-books in education as a society .

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  5. I personally learn better with actual books. I agree many don’t have access to lap tops and tablets. However, we can start a book loaning system created by students who can donate books. Many students have text they don’t use anyway and at my job at the bookstore throw in the recycling bin.


  6. E-books are an excellent alternative to the traditional textbook. Although I will admit I do enjoy having physical copies because I find it easier to comprehend material, I have recently found myself only buying e-books, if possible, to save money and space. Unfortunately, many others would not be so willing to go virtual and it might create the problem of people no having adequate resources to access the book online. Ultimately e-books are a brilliant idea and having them available for all copies used by the college would be a major step forward. This plan will help that become a reality.


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