The Associated Students of Madison University Affairs Committee met Monday to discuss strategies for a campaign to make textbooks more affordable and accessible to students.
According to University Affairs Committee Chair Becca Buell, the Textbook Affordability campaign was created based on campus feedback from brainstorming sessions, forums and meetings with student government representatives.
“I think textbook [costs] are something that’s widely felt by the student body,” Buell said. “[Textbooks are] something that we all have to buy every semester and it’s something that we all have to deal with.”
The committee discussed potential starting points for the campaign, settling on two ideas to begin exploring in greater detail.
One campaign would aim to require professors to post course textbooks online at least two weeks before the start of the semester.
Many committee members questioned whether professors would be willing to make this commitment.
“We hope they would like to help students out,” Buell said. “That’s what they’re here for.”
A second textbook initiative would aim to create textbook swaps within the various schools and colleges on campus.
The project would be modeled after a swap already provided by Polygon, the school of engineering’s student government.
Committee members are also researching e-textbooks and possible collaborations with the University Bookstore as additional campaign options.
The committee is also looking into ways to improve the university’s advising services.
Buell said they are hoping to host a roundtable event to allow students to share personal experiences and suggestions on the subject.