Access Programs are the Future. Is Your Campus Store Ready?
In 2022, higher education course material sales decreased by 4% according to a Pearson 2022 Trading Update. This decline partly has to do with the fact that textbook prices have gone up over 35% from 2011 to 2021, posing serious academic challenges to students of various financial backgrounds.
In 2021, only 34% of students reported an ability to obtain “most of their required course materials” before the start of the term. Shockingly, more than 47% of students ended up enrolling in fewer courses as a result of unreasonable textbook prices, ultimately limiting their fullest educational potential.
Even though online education has posed some relief to these high textbook costs, many campuses struggle to implement easeful technologies that offer instant course material access to students.
Affordability, accessibility, and student data security are top concerns among campuses looking to adopt new e-learning and digital material solutions. With so many publishers to choose from and an ever-growing library of LMS integrations, the future of online access programs seems overwhelming.
Fortunately, there are solutions to this overwhelm. To learn how to prepare your campus for the future of learning with reliable access program technologies, continue reading.
Lead the Future of Your Campus With Access Programs
There are several things your campus needs to prepare for access programs:
- Educate directors, faculty, and instructors about the benefits of access programs
- Equip your independent campus store with a digital ecosystem that integrates with access programs
- Partner with the right publishers (or gain access to thousands of course material providers through one platform)
- Provide students with information and tech support for campus access programs
Whether your campus meets these requirements already or is just getting started, here’s an in-depth look at why all these steps matter.
The Future of Access Programs and the Campus Store
Up until recently, course material publishers prioritized direct-to-student strategies. This put campus stores at risk of losing revenue: students would turn to publishers or third-party distributors for cheaper, more accessible textbooks and course materials.
Higher education bookstores continue to face these challenges, often experiencing a loss of control over their business model as students seek more affordable options. Since campus store sales are a critical component of an institution’s revenue, academic freedom, and student success, there are several concerns about the implementation of access programs.
Will access programs rule out campus stores? How can students and store employees keep up with the ever-changing technology involved in equitable access? Are there ways to ensure student and instructor data privacy across campus when using access programs?
These are all valid questions. As higher education pivots toward digital access to meet the needs of the campus community, there are ways to make such programs work for — not against — your campus success.
Independent Campus Stores: Overcoming Challenges and Costs
When it comes to inclusive access and equitable access programs, independent campus stores can finally take control of their operation while providing value to students like never before.
Access programs provide course materials at a lower cost than traditional publishers or bookstores, all of which can be accessed on the first day of class. One challenge is that the average university uses more than 100 LMS integrations, which can be difficult to manage and maintain. These integrations are not only expensive, but they take time for students to learn how to effectively navigate course content. It also requires instructors to source through multiple course content vendors, taking up precious time and energy before the start of each term.
Affordable, seamless solutions like Willo Labs combine all LMS integrations into one digital platform, allowing students and instructors to overcome these challenges with accessibility at top of mind. Students gain access to course materials at the lowest price without having to learn multiple LMS systems. They also have the ability to utilize financial aid for online course materials, applying funds directly through campus billing software.
Through this model, instructors can choose from a wide selection of teaching materials from the campus network. Inclusive access and equitable access to course material sales remain on campus, ensuring students obtain course materials at the lowest cost. This way, they don’t have to search third-party retailers for cheaper options, and all the funds go directly to the campus.
All-in-One Course Material Access Solutions for Campus Stores
To support campuses through these digital learning access options, Willo provides a single campus technology to centralize all courseware in one place. Willo equips your campus store to gain total control of your course material sales and delivery methods, whether you offer digital, physical, or both options.
Instead of competing with various publishers, waiting on access codes, and manually connecting various learning software, Willo makes all aspects of e-learning effortless at scale. Easily manage all your campus adoptions, encourage top-notch data privacy, and ensure codeless, day-one access for students — all within one campus connection.
Is your campus store ready to embrace the future of e-learning? Contact Willo today to learn more about the first and only platform that provides digital learning access for all.