California State to introduce digital textbook rental program

Academic leaders at the California State University (CSU) System have agreed to introduce a range of digital textbooks at a discounted rate through a partnership with Cengage Learning.

More than 5,000 of the most popular titles will be available as part of the digital textbook rental program. Officials hope the plan will make course materials more accessible and less expensive for students. As well as being more convenient, individuals renting textbooks through the initiative could save as much as 60 percent of the price of the print publication.

"This program will ease the financial burden on students by providing access to quality online materials that are priced significantly lower than traditional textbooks," Gerry Hanley, senior director of CSU Academic Technology Services, said in a statement.

Reuters reports that according to a Kelton Research study, more than 70 percent of college students want textbooks to be made available through web-based learning platforms, and 62 percent said they would study more often if they had access to digital versions of their texts.

What do you think of digital textbooks? If a school used more technology, would you be more likely to fill out a college application for that institution?

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