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South Coast College Develops Majors That Don't Require Textbooks

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A university on the South Coast has developed two majors that don’t require students to purchase textbooks.

Cal State Channel Islands is the first in the CSU system to have what it calls undergraduate "Z-Majors" in which students can use quality, free and readily available educational resources as opposed to textbooks.

Jill Leafstedt with CSUCI says this alternative is important because the university has a high percentage of low-income students who can't afford textbooks.

"The cost can range from $50 to $1,000 depending on the caseload you're taking.  And, so that unnpredictability leads to students not purchasing textbooks.  They try to share textbooks or they wait to see how important the textbook is going to be.  That can put students behind."   

Starting in the fall, two “z-majors” will launch in the communication and early childhood studies programs.