Oct 10, 2018

Versailles, Ky. – Go to any college campus and you will see students lugging around heavy backpacks. But for Kentucky Community and Technical College System (KCTCS) students enrolled in courses using Barnes & Noble College First Day™, their backpacks are much lighter.

Through First Day, Barnes & Noble College’s inclusive access model, course materials are offered at a lower price, billed to students upon registration for a class and delivered digitally to them on or before the first day of class. Because the course materials are digital, they are available to students anywhere, any time, on any device.

This year, First Day saved KCTCS students more than $6 million when comparing the cost of their materials to regular retail pricing. KCTCS offers the largest inclusive access program of any Barnes & Noble College partner school, with more than 7,000 KCTCS courses utilizing the program each academic year.

Inclusive access, also called the course charge model, has been adopted by a select number of faculty at KCTCS, with more opting in each semester. First Day currently supports course materials from seven publishers, including an increasing number of materials for general education courses. Faculty members who offer the program for their classes clearly see the benefits.

“The course charge model is good for increasing student success and retention by allowing the students access to the materials on the first day of class,” said Dr. Kay Lafferty, professor of psychology and criminal justice at Jefferson Community and Technical College. “It is cost effective, which helps students defray college costs.  The course charge model is easy to navigate and is student centered.”

For classes not offering First Day, the KCTCS bookstores provide many other options for affordable learning materials. Students can take advantage of the bookstores’ textbook rental program or purchase used books. Barnes & Noble College also offers price matching to ensure students get the best prices available, as well as open educational resources (OER) content and courseware through OpenStax, LoudCloud Courseware™ and other major OER providers.

By offering affordable options and ensuring materials are available by the first day of class – especially for those with financial aid who typically have to wait for disbursement – KCTCS and Barnes & Noble College are helping to prepare students with the tools they need for a successful semester.