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BGSU University Libraries

Textbook Affordability: A Guide for Faculty: Home

This guide is designed to help faculty understand the issues surrounding textbook prices.

How do I arrange course reserves for my class?

If you have any questions about the process at any point, please contact Gretchen Avery at 419-372-7908 or gavery@bgsu.edu. I am happy to answer questions or help you make arrangements for special situations.

Reserve Request Form (online)

Complete the online request form.

If you are requesting to place library-owned books on reserve, we will need the title and call number of the books or materials to complete the form. Please provide sufficient information to ensure accuracy in later steps.  We are happy to pull the items for you.  If you have the items already, please bring the books or materials to the Circulation Desk.   

If a requested item is checked out, we will recall the item. This process usually takes between one and two weeks.

If you are putting your own books or materials on reserve, please leave the call number field blank and either bring the items to the circulation desk or mail them to Gretchen Avery, Jerome Library #113. 

The faculty member chooses a loan period of 2 hours, 24 hours, or 72 hours. 2-Hour materials do not leave the building.  In our experience, textbooks or required readings work best as a 2 hour checkout. Supplemental readings work best as a 24 hour or 72-hour checkout.

At the end of the semester, faculty can choose to have their personally owned item returned or keep the item on reserve for another semester.

What Faculty & Student Can Do About Textbook Affordability

​Faculty --

  • Make selections as early as possible.
  • Work with the University Bookstore to identify the true cost of a textbook to students and other cost-saving strategies such as:
    • Selecting a lower-cost electronic version of a textbook.
    • Avoiding a textbook that is bundled if you do not require the entire bundle for the course.
    • Considering the University Bookstore's textbook options.
  • When possible, allow multiple editions of a textbook to be used.
  • If you have an extra copy of the textbook, place it on course reserves in the University Libraries.
  • Use alternatives to a traditional textbook.
    • Consider using an e-book through the University Libraries.
    • Work with your librarian to identify alternative essays, articles, and learning objects already available in the library or online, including open access textbooks.

Students -- 

  • Shop around, but understand the return policies before purchasing textbooks and save your sales receipts. Be careful to buy the right "version" of the textbook. Do you need software that comes with it? If you buy online, can you return it without paying shipping? Can you get a refund on the shipping charges you already paid?
  • Go to the first day of class and make sure the professor is using all of the textbooks.
  • Buy used textbooks if possible.
  • Check the Ohio Digital Resource Commons for digital textbooks at a discounted price.
  • Check if your textbook is available on the University Bookstore textbook rental program.
  • Encourage your professor to place a copy of the textbook on University Libraries reserve, or to work with the University Bookstore's textbook rental program.
  • If practical, share books with classmates.
  • Sometimes textbooks are available from the University Libraries. Follow this guide  to learn how to find textbooks in the Libraries and on the freely available web.