Access to Affordable Educational Resources

by | May 17, 2021 | 0 comments


By Lars Meyer  (Associate Dean, Access & Resource Services, Emory University Libraries) 

Against the Grain Vol. 33 No. 2

Academic libraries have traditionally avoided buying textbooks for general or reserves collections.  Typically, students have been expected to buy textbooks.  Over the course of a four-year academic period, students may expect to spend about $4,000 on textbooks and supplies, according to the University of Georgia, for example (2020).  For some students, these costs present challenges.  To address those challenges, librarians, faculty, administrators, consortia, and publishers are developing alternatives to supplying textbooks and other course materials to students at low cost or no cost.  The topic of access to affordable learning materials continues to evolve, and in this issue Against the Grain authors share a variety of perspectives and experiences.  Themes examined include, among others: 

• Open Educational Resources

• Leveraging LibGuides

• Course reserves

• Library budgets

• Faculty collaborations

• The role of the bookstore

To help frame the discussion, Meg White’s article compares several models that describe access to educational resources.  Anne Osterman, Genya O’Gara, and Sophie Rondeau review Virginia’s state funded program to supply library owned and affordable course materials to students for subjects where there is typically a lack of open educational resources.  Sandra Bozarth and Amanda Grombly discuss California State University Bakerfield’s agility in supplying and sustaining access to digital course reserve alternatives throughout the pandemic.  Lastly, Jeffrey M. Mortimore and Nikki Cannon-Rech demonstrate how LibGuides can be used to provide an OER textbook by collaborating with the chemistry faculty.


Office of Financial Aid, University of Georgia.  


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Save the Date! Charleston In Between

Charleston In Between Wednesday, July 28, 10:30 am - 3:00 pm Eastern The Charleston Conference is planning a very special “In Between” half-day virtual mini-conference event in late July to explore important late-breaking developments that can’t wait til November for...


Share This