City Colleges of Chicago students will soon have
significantly expanded access to a wide array of affordable textbook options,
thanks to a new contract with Akademos approved
by the institution’s Board of Trustees.
Due to improved discounts and greater access to used books,
eBooks, and textbook rentals, City Colleges estimates that its students will
collectively save up to $4 million annually compared to current textbook vendor
arrangements. Akademos was deemed most responsive overall on issues of cost and
“Textbook prices have exploded during the last thirty years,
rising faster than tuition and healthcare rates,” Chancellor Cheryl Hyman said. “With this new contract, we will bring
significant relief to students in the form of new and more affordable textbook
options and ensure City Colleges continues to offer one of the best educational
values in the region.”
Through the new contract with Akademos, for the first time,
students will be able to order books through a 24/7 online bookstore and
marketplace in their preferred format—eBook, new, used, or rental—and apply
financial aid and/or vouchers to complete the purchase electronically. The new
system will launch on April 4, 2014, the first day of registration for the
Students will be able to choose from more than 50,000 eBooks
that will be offered at a 30-60% discount off publishers’ list price for
physical textbooks. Textbook rentals will cost an average of 50% less than the
publisher’s list price. Used books will be offered at 60-75% off publisher’s list
price. Students will also be able to
sell their textbooks through the marketplace to recoup some of their cost.
“Purchasing textbooks shouldn’t be a financial hardship for
anyone,” said CCC student trustee Timakia Hobbs. “Students asked for help and City
Colleges listened. These new textbook options are just what we have been
Through an eReader, students can save money while also
enhancing learning opportunities: they’ll have the ability to annotate texts
and share questions and comments on reading assignments with other students.
Instructors will be able to view students’ progress and answer questions posed
in the margins.
Under the contract, which runs from November 7, 2013, to May 31, 2019, Akademos will
provide a $5,000 annual textbook scholarship to the City Colleges of Chicago
Foundation, hire paid student interns each fall term and create kiosk stations
at each college to assist students with textbook purchases, among other things.
the new system, students will be
able to ship books to their home or to a college bookstore for pickup.
Bookstores will continue to sell school supplies and other retail items but
will not sell textbooks. City Colleges faculty members will be able to search
for the textbooks they wish to use in their classes through Akademos’ textbook
adoption tool. There are no
start-up or monthly costs to City Colleges for Akademos’ services.