We know that affordability of educational materials is an important issue for our students. WVU is committed to helping students find the information needed to make well-informed decisions about available options. Below are student-friendly resources to help navigate how to find if there are more affordable options for educational texts and materials.
Search for Low-Cost, No-Cost and OER Courses
Faculty are encouraged to consider the affordability of all available materials when choosing which educational materials to assign for their classes. They are also asked to identify when their courses fall into our low- and no-cost categories so they become searchable for students. Students can use the Schedule Builder and the STAR online course schedule to identify these designated courses .
- A low-cost (LOWC ) * course section means all required instructional materials (with the exception of proctoring and lab fees) can be purchased for a total expected cost of $75.00 or less based on “University bookstore pricing.”
- A no-cost (NOC)* course section indicates that all required instructional materials (with the exception of proctoring and lab fees) are available to students at no additional cost beyond tuition.
- An open-educational resources (OER) section indicates that all required instructional materials hold an open license or reside in the public domain. For more information, visit the WVU Libraries website.
*Although instructors have determined course pricing to the best of their ability, it is possible that courses identified as low- or no-cost may not exactly follow these guidelines.
Access Library Reserves
Some instructors have their materials “on reserve” and available through the WVU Libraries Reserve system. These might include both print and digital materials such as books, articles or other content. Generally faculty will note the availability of such materials in the course syllabus. Students can also login to search by course number or instructor name to find any available materials for their registered courses.
- Visit the WVU Library Reserves website.
Borrow and Re-Share Donated Materials
The Shining Minds Textbook Initiative allows students to donate textbooks and materials they no longer need and to borrow them from the WVU Libraries.
- Visit the WVU Library's Shining Minds webpage.
Utilize WVU Bookstore Programs
- Through a partnership and contract with WVU, the WVU Bookstore gives $1.3 million to $1.5 million each year to non-athletic student scholarships.
- The WVU Bookstores provide course materials to students in all available formats: new, used, rental and digital. Learn more about rentals on the WVU Bookstore website.
- The WVU Bookstores offer over 50 OER courseware options at $25 through our partners at BNED LoudCloud.
- The WVU Bookstore can ensure that all students, including the nearly 2,000 students using third-party payments (Veterans Affairs, Student Financial Aid, Dept. of Rehabilitation, and Student Athletes using scholarships) can get their books for the first day of class.