There is a time of the year when of A-level result come out. Each summer, many sixth formers nervously unseal scratchy, brown envelopes to find out they’ve entered the university. For those lucky people who got a place a university, exciting life begins with an academic year.
Students get a reading list. These beacons of academic wisdom are compiled by universities to guide students in book-form through the academic year. Actually, now you must buy some books. You should be prepared to spend some serious amounts of cash.
You will probably spend a large part of your time reading. Usually, there are some old buildings on campuses that are dedicated to this popular student pastime. However, why do educational books have to be so expensive? It is not a secret that course essentials and books costs are the most popular students’ worry. They cause even more stress than lack of access to teachers or poor living conditions. This is not hard to see when you get your book bills.
Last year, it was estimated that students would spend more money on educational books and equipment than on transport. And this suggests one thing – textbooks are too expensive. Even years before such costs was not so high.
There are some alternative ways out such as buying second-hand educational books. Book shopping is a rather pricey business, any way you look at it. Even if you borrow from the trusted library, you will be tainted by short loan periods during essay week.
The obscene cost of books is made thornier by obscene tuition fees. As for scientific students who pay to use state-of-the-art facilities, they get a hefty reading list of pricey titles. In any case, it is not fair to expect any student to spend huge amounts of money on books, when they have already paid lots of money for tuition at the beginning of an academic year.
Expensive reading lists are unnecessary additions to the spending that students already have. If a university fails to improve the perception of providing good value for the money, a student will not go there.
Reading lists can make a hole in undergraduates’ pockets immediately. However, this cost is even higher for an university student. Many talented young people are choosing alternative, paths when they may otherwise study for a degree. The university may not be the right option for all students, but it is so expensive for those who really want to go there. Probably, the cost of books will grow further and that’s the sad truth that our generation has to face.
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