The school year has barely begun, but we’ve already seen exciting breakthroughs in the movement to use open textbooks on campus. The skyrocketing cost of textbooks is making it even harder to afford a college education. Fortunately, we have a solution to this problem in the form of “open textbooks” – high-quality books that the authors have decided to publish online for free or for a very low cost in print. With open textbooks, we can help make higher education more accessible to everyone. Just in the past month, we’ve seen exciting changes on this issue:
  • Thanks to hard work by students in California, the state legislature passed a bill this month that will expand the use of open textbooks at California’s public universities. This comes just a few months after Oregon passed a similar law.
  • Many schools are considering the creation of open textbook programs. Most notably, the University of Maryland University College announced a plan to eliminate the use of all paid textbooks.
  • The open textbooks market keeps growing as new books are released, including new books on algebra, trigonometry, and chemistry from the popular OpenStax program.
With more and more of you working to make textbooks affordable, we’re expanding our work to support open textbook programs.  As part of this, we’re creating a new campaign team around this issue. Join our Open Textbooks Team to get special campaign updates and network with other students around the country who are involved with this issue. And if you haven’t done so yet, download our open textbooks toolkit to get resources on how to bring open textbooks to your campus.