Innovative Solutions for Reducing the Costs of College Textbooks
The issues raised by the increasingly higher prices of college textbooks have drawn the attention of many parties, hundreds of faculty chairmen and government representatives nationwide currently working as a team in an attempt to find appropriate solutions for the disproportionate costs of today’s student study materials. However, the most efficient and applicable solution to the crisis has been proposed by an unexpected category: online publishers. Their approach to the problem has surprised everyone through its simplicity and practicality, being quickly embraced by both faculty leaders, government authorities and other competent parties.
This recently presented solution basically consists in publishing college textbooks online and relying on advertisers to drag down the costs of such study materials. In theory, this method could actually be considered infallible, as both students and Internet advertisers would greatly benefit from the process: students would be able to purchase their college textbooks online, in exchange for considerably smaller fees, while advertisers would achieve great exposure and popularity for their brands, thus increasing their profits.
The method described by online advertisers basically acts like this: advertisers cover the costs of publishing online college textbooks, while students purchase these ad-containing online textbooks instead of their more expensive counterparts and thus become the targeted market segment for various advertising agencies. Seen through this perspective, the college textbooks of tomorrow will be available under the form of software products and will contain various advertisements. The advertising campaigns promoted with the means of online college textbooks will be fully customizable, accounting for the features required by brand owners and advertisers.
Ads can contain static images, video and audio and can be easily attached to the sponsors’ websites. In fact, they can even be interactive, enabling video or taking users to a series of websites or other online resources. These advertisements can be placed at the beginning and ending of a book chapter, at the index, summary, homework section, as well as at the very end of the textbook. The ads can belong to multiple sponsoring online advertising agencies or a single sponsor, taking various shapes according to advertisers’ specifications. These types of ads can also be easily included in print versions of e-college textbooks available for purchase both online and offline (in traditional bookstores).
At present, the main college textbook topics chosen by online advertisers are: accounting, financial management, mathematics, computer applications and psychology. Sponsors may later decide to cover up other topics too if the initiative achieves the expected result.
In addition to regularly used, curriculum-required college textbooks, other study materials such as course supplements, supplementary readings and laboratories may also be sponsored by online advertising companies. At first, the advertisements can be introduced locally, in randomly chosen schools from the US, in order to test the efficiency of the method. If the initiative proves to be successful, it can later be applied on a national basis, targeting educational establishments nationwide. Although the project is still under development, online advertisers are very optimistic, already taking pride in having found an effective solution for bringing down the prices of college textbooks.
About the Author: So if you want to find out more about textbooks and especially about college textbooks, follow these links, you will also find information for the Dutch versions - studieboeken.