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Students and faculty rally to tackle textbook costs

With the assistance of faculty members at Lane Community College, students representing U.S. PIRG and OSPIRG outlined a new investigative report that shows students could save about 1.5 billion dollars a year.

Posted: Jan. 25, 2018 3:42 PM
Updated: Jan. 25, 2018 6:10 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- Students and faculty at Lane Community College (LCC) in Eugene held a press conference Thursday morning to present their investigative report entitled "Open 101: an Action Plan for Affordable Textbooks."

Sabrina Najaf-Pir, along with Lucas Gutterman, and Meggie Wright  spearheaded the press conference by pointing out multiple different sources identified in the report that provide free online material to students.

To produce the study, the United States Public Interest Research Group (U.S. PIRG) and Oregon State Public Interest Research Group (OSPIRG) collected data from 40 public and private non-profit two and four year colleges.

In their findings, they found schools that invested in open educational resources (OER) were able to help students save more money.

However, they say a lot of these resources go to waste.

"Teachers say they just haven't gotten a chance to switch everything over yet or they don't think it's for them. All their materials are ready and connect, so it makes me a little upset about that. Frankly, they're just lazy about moving the coursework over," said Najaf-Pir.

She said while many professor have not taken advantage of these resources, the OSPIRG charter at LCC has worked with about 20 faculty members on their research, but hope to get everyone on board.

Najaf-Pir said, "This is an ongoing issue, every term there's new courses available with new professors teaching them and they should know that we have these open available resources. That they're free for students and for professors to use and constantly update, so it's a much better resource than getting textbooks."

The group said they plan to deliver their report to the Dean of the college and hope to see changes soon.

To read the full investiagtive report click here. 

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