With the advent of online colleges and universities came the online college bookstores. These are convenient, safe for online purchases, and books are geared to the individual school. Some of them have a great selection of other college needs, as well as text books and guides.
Ashford University in Clinton, Iowa, is a good example. Many of the College of External Studies (online format) classes require purchase of specific text books written or adapted for the university. Some students try to acquire texts for specific classes more reasonably by buying through used book sites or from eBay. The problem is that some of the information Ashford requires is not included with the generic version of the book. This leaves these students at a disadvantage, and grades suffer because their work may be incomplete. They may have received the book, but not the proper version of it. Often, there are CDs or DVDs included with the official text that are not part of an eBay offering.
Ashford is a traditional campus university that was originally Mount Saint Clare’s and then Franciscan University. Its long campus tradition includes athletic teams, sororities and fraternities, fine arts groups, and all the other activities commonly associated with universities. Their book store includes items that are connected with the various school groups, teams, and associations, and the logo is proudly displayed on all these items. In fact, it’s difficult to go there to order books and not get wrapped up in looking at all the other useful and interesting items. Clothing proudly sports the university logo or the sports teams’ logo, and prices are competitive on the market. A variety of merchandise is available for studying, for wearing, or just for keepsakes.
But the advantage to using your college bookstore is that you will have the version of the text book that is required for your school’s learning format. Once you have purchased your books, (and usually online classes only require that you purchase one textbook at a time or whatever is needed just for your current class,)they are shipped to your door within a very short time. It may be as quickly as two days, without extra charges. The books are yours to keep and to treasure and use in the future for reference. Or as some students prefer, they may be resold or donated. The point is – the books are yours to do with as you please.
Occasionally, a university bookstore may indicate the availability of used textbooks for a particular course when you go to the purchase site. It is up to the student if they would like to purchase used books that have been sold back or donated back to the school. This is a better idea than shopping on eBay, because the books are the ones used by the school. If there is no indication of used-book availability, you may call the bookstore number listed and inquire about a used book or request assistance in locating one.
Another great addition to college bookstores online is the availability of research guides and information on DVD. As online colleges and universities become more and more desirable, the range of merchandise available in their online bookstores will expand. If you are attending an online school and have not looked into your bookstore, take a few minutes to go in and browse! Everyone needs a window decal, at the very least.