College Textbooks: Enhanced Offerings Appear to Drive Recent Price Increases

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Description

A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The federal government strives to make postsecondary education accessible and affordable, primarily by providing financial aid to students and their families. Given that nearly half of undergraduates receive federal financial aid, Congress is interested in the overall cost of attendance, including the cost of textbooks. We were asked to determine (1) what has been the change in textbook prices, (2) what factors have contributed to changes in textbook prices, and (3) what factors explain why a given U.S. textbook may retail outside the United States for ... continued below

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United States. Government Accountability Office. July 29, 2005.

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This report is part of the collection entitled: Government Accountability Office Reports and was provided by UNT Libraries Government Documents Department to Digital Library, a digital repository hosted by the UNT Libraries. It has been viewed 11 times . More information about this report can be viewed below.

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Description

A letter report issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The federal government strives to make postsecondary education accessible and affordable, primarily by providing financial aid to students and their families. Given that nearly half of undergraduates receive federal financial aid, Congress is interested in the overall cost of attendance, including the cost of textbooks. We were asked to determine (1) what has been the change in textbook prices, (2) what factors have contributed to changes in textbook prices, and (3) what factors explain why a given U.S. textbook may retail outside the United States for a different price. We received technical comments from the Department of Labor. The Department of Education had no comments. The National Association of College Stores generally agreed with the report's findings. The Association of American Publishers agreed with some findings but expressed concern about the data sources we used and the characterizations made by retailers and wholesalers regarding the impact of publisher practices on students. We carefully reviewed the data sources available on college textbook pricing and found the data we used to be the most complete and reliable data available for our purposes. Additionally, we sought perspectives from publishers, retailers, and used book wholesalers to ensure our characterization of the textbook industry was balanced and complete."

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Government Accountability Office Reports

The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) is an independent, nonpartisan agency that works for the U.S. Congress investigating how the federal government spends taxpayers' money. Its goal is to increase accountability and improve the performance of the federal government. The Government Accountability Office Reports Collection consists of over 13,000 documents on a variety of topics ranging from fiscal issues to international affairs.

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  • July 29, 2005

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • June 12, 2014, 7:50 p.m.

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United States. Government Accountability Office. College Textbooks: Enhanced Offerings Appear to Drive Recent Price Increases, report, July 29, 2005; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc297355/: accessed August 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.