Electronic Course Materials Will Make Higher Education More Affordable

The Ohio State University has recently been focusing on making college more affordable. Though tuition costs are usually in the spot light, there are many other costs that may include off campus housing, food, fuel, and vehicle maintenance. Though one major cost many students are often shocked by are the cost of textbooks and other course materials. Some students may spend over a thousand dollars annually on textbooks alone and even used copies of textbooks can cost hundreds of dollars a piece.

The Ohio State University will be using a new digital learning platform that should reduce the overall cost of teaching materials. Through their partnership with Unizin, the Ohio State University acquired the Courseload software – an industry-leading platform that delivers e-books and other digital course material easily and efficiently. Instructors can choose to use it as a primary or supplementary source for learning materials.

A recent study by the National Association of College Stores tells us that the price of course materials has actually gone down between 2007 and 2015 – from an average of $701 to $563. According to the Student Public Interest Research Groups, replacing textbooks with online versions may reduce student spending by $128 per course.

Courseload’s platform not only includes an eText reader, but also Engage – an online collaboration tool instructors can use to supplement in-class learning with out-of-class materials and student collaboration.

This software could provide a support system for students not previously available as well as significantly reduce the cost of class materials.

Jody Victor