Santa Monica College students may be receiving new textbooks for their library’s reserve soon! A great article at The Corsair documents how an A.S. (Associated Students) board meeting heard a proposal by the school’s Director of Instructional Support, Marco Vivero, about the possibility of buying more textbooks to be put on reserve. It’s my guess that many students in the U.S. would be delighted to see comparable proposals at their schools.
“The average student spends about $900 per year on textbooks, which is nearly 20 percent of tuition and fees at a four-year public institution." Said Vivero. “Moreover, textbook prices are rising at about four times the rate of inflation."
I totally agree with Vivero’s concern for student expenses, it’s this type of mentality that many other colleges and universities are failing to put into perspective. Not everyone has the same access and necessary funds to acquire the textbooks they need for their classes, in Santa Monica and across the country.
“The library has seen an increase in student requests for textbooks, and I believe this increase parallels the increase in textbook prices," said the SMC Dean of Library Services Mona Martin. “Some students use the library’s copy of a textbook more at the beginning of the semester, until they acquire the funds to purchase their own copy, but other students rely on the library’s copy of the textbook for the entire semester."
Using reserve copies of textbooks from your school library is just one of many techniques students take advantage of for free textbooks. However, reserve textbooks are not always available as the article points out.
“Some instructors do not provide a reserve copy of their textbooks, and this leaves students who are unable to afford the books little access to the material.“
What options do students in the predicament described above have? Hopefully, the proposal for additional reserve textbooks at Santa Monica College is successful. Student’s are sure to appreciate the help!