Thinking outside the book: Students divided on loose-leaf text books

Thinking outside the book:

Students divided on loose-leaf text books

Joyce Smith

Staff Writer

“We will not be buying back any loose-leaf texts,” said Amanda Belliveau, from the SC4 bookstore.

This will come as quite a surprise to some on the SC4 campus, and is sure to add to the complaints about this format for textbooks.

Students have described them with words like “garbage,” “junk,” and other adjectives that allude to the overall poor quality of the product.

“You are buying a shrink wrapped bundle of paper,” stated one student who did not wish to have their name mentioned.  The same student went on to state that this bundle of papers costs $150+, that it is poor quality paper that rips easily, you must buy a binder to hold the chapters, and that the loose-leaf book has no resale value.

“I like the loose-leaf books,” commented Pam Gregg, an SC4 freshman, from Avoca. “They are made specifically for SC4 and they don’t a have a bunch of stuff we don’t need or use. I like the fact that I can take out only the chapters, or pages, with which I am working so that I don’t have to keep flipping back and forth through a whole bunch of pages.”

Gregg pulled out a soft-cover text book and showed the curling cover, and the binding that was coming unglued, “At least with the loose-leaf books I can buy a binder and protect the pages from ripping, and curling.”

Student experience with this new format for text books on this campus is somewhat limited, with only a small number of courses utilizing loose-leaf books at this time.

In the past, unless the textbook should change for the next semester, there was always a strong market for textbooks in buy-back programs through the school and through outside companies who purchase used textbooks for resale at very competitive prices.

Loose-leaf books will offer students quite a surprise at the end of this semester; no buy-back value.

However, one industrious student stated, “The school may not be buying them back, but that isn’t going to stop me from selling them to someone on campus myself!”

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