For many students, just getting their classes paid for is a big struggle without adding in purchasing textbooks. Textbooks are assigned in most online and campus classes at TJC, but the number of students not buying them may be surprising.

According to a survey conducted by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group, seven in 10 college students say they have not purchased a textbook at least once because they had found the price much too high. Knowing how college bookstores function can give the student an advantage when it’s time to sell their books back or buy new ones.

“I don’t blame students for not wanting to buy these high-priced books. We offer the option to rent them out, and that seems to be a better option for the students that don’t have the desire to buy the higher priced books,” said Ann Clower, manager at College Books in Tyler.

The survey conducted by the U.S. PIRG also showed that almost half of the respondents said they factored in textbook costs when deciding how many or which classes to take.

“Lately we’ve had a sale on used books, usually around the beginning of each term some used books go on sale,” Abraham Liceriol, worker at the on-campus bookstore in Rogers Student Center said. “A few weeks before finals and on finals week is the best time to sell back a book to get the most money back.”

College textbook prices increased three times the rate of inflation over the last decade according to a report by the United States Government Accountability Office. There was an 82 percent increase in pricing from 2002-2012 in the report. Recent changes to federal law provide some relief to students, but more must be done to curb textbook costs permanently, it finds.

“I’m in my first year, so I’ve had to buy a couple of books but I am prepared to have to spend a large amount on books in the coming semesters,” said Ann Cuero, photography major at TJC. “I’ve had friends that chose to the rent option because they did not want to pay $200 for a textbook.”

The on-campus bookstore is located on the bottom floor of Rogers Student Center, and the off campus bookstore, College Books, is located at 1232 E 5th Sreet in Tyler. You can rent books online from Chegg.com for another money saving option. A reward for past members is coupons before the semester starts. Feel free to put your comments on textbook pricing and buying vs renting on MyTJCnews.com

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