Remember the disheartening days of undergraduate studies where you would walk out of the bookstore on the first day of class sans $300-500? Textbooks are very expensive. I recently took a class called Human Growth and Development. The textbook, in paperback, was $180. The original copyright date was 1997. I was taking the class in 2009 and it was the 11th edition of the book. You do the math. That's right: 1997 + 11=2008. There was basically a new edition every year. Do you think I could sell it back after the class? No! There was a new edition coming out for the 2009-2010 school year.
I wonder if libraries should offer current textbooks. It would be too expensive to buy enough for everyone, but would having a copy on reserve for students be helpful? Would that be okay with the college bookstore?
I think that e-textbooks might be a good option for universities and faculty to examine. It could provide an economical way for students to get information required for class. There is an article in CampusTechnology that talks about the future of e-textbooks. Here is the link: