Here at NSU, we’re relatively lucky when it comes to textbooks. Ask anyone who’s been here longer than a semester, and they’ll be able to tell you that, when taking a class here, it’s always best to wait until after the first class to buy or rent the textbook. The reason? Many professors end up not using the textbook, and they’ll tell you whether or not you really need to buy it, potentially saving you hundreds of dollars. However, even though we’ve got a fairly good draw and often don’t even have to buy textbooks, many of us still inevitably have to buy a few for classes that really require them, and when I say these costs can break the bank, it’s more like they can take a sledgehammer right at our bank accounts. For reasons I don’t completely understand, these textbooks can be so expensive I expect them to come with a Gucci bookmark. Do I really need to be spending this much?
According to The Atlantic, there’s been an almost 812 percent rise in textbook costs since 1978 Outrageous! I looked up some textbooks on Amazon to see the prices. Looking at biology textbooks, there was not a single option under $150, mathematics $130, business law $200. Now imagine having to take all of these classes in one semester. That is at least $480 and that is truly a large number. Put that on top of the money we’re already paying to attend this private university – with or without a scholarship – and that is no small amount in any case. And, to top it all off, you’ll probably only need that book for a few months of your life before never needing it again. How much did you spend on that again? It feels like the cherry on top of a milkshake made of shredded money.
All in all, whether or not these textbook’s appalling prices are necessary, they are certainly ridiculous in the eyes of my bank account, and many other college students’ as well. Here at NSU, I am thankful for our considerate professors who do not always require us to spend as much as we would have to usually on stacks and stacks of paper, and what sure seems like shouldn’t cost hundreds of dollars. Maybe I don’t truly understand all the production behind these entire forests bound up in a book, but even if I did, the cost wouldn’t be any less maddening.