The cost of higher education is way too high. An often overlooked part of this problem is the soaring price of textbooks – in fact, the cost of textbooks has almost doubled in the last decade. With just five large publishing companies controlling 80% of the textbook market, publishers have been able to hike up their prices without fear of competition.
Fortunately, we have a solution: open textbooks, which are faculty-written, peer-reviewed textbooks that are published under an open license, which means they’re free to read online, free to download, and cheap to print. And they’re already seeing huge success – on the colleges where open textbooks are being used, students are saving millions of dollars.
But the trick is getting them implemented everywhere. We have been working hard to spread the word about open textbooks. This week marks a new step in our efforts with the launch of the Open Textbook Alliance. The Alliance is a nationwide network of student government leaders who are working with their faculty and administrators to bring open textbooks to their campuses.
Through the Alliance, we are empowering students with the knowledge and resources to see real results on their campuses. To learn more about the Open Textbook Alliance, visit their website at http://opentextbookalliance.org. Please also make sure to like them on Facebook and follow them on Twitter.