Online Tool Predicts Value of Buying, Renting Textbooks

JANUARY 23, 2015
Meghan Ross, Associate Editor
If you find yourself wondering whether you’ll get more value from buying or renting your pharmacy school textbooks, then a new online tool may be a helpful resource.
 
CampusBooks, a textbook price comparison website, has launched a first-of-its-kind prediction tool called “Buy vs Rent” that uses data on the current price and future estimated value of a book to predict which method would be the best bet for a student. It also shows students the book’s historic buyback prices, which can help determine whether the book is worth the cost or whether its value will depreciate.
 
For example, CampusBook’s tool suggested with high confidence that students should rent a textbook used at the University at Buffalo School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences called Basic Concepts in Medicinal Chemistry. The book normally costs $54, but a rental would only set a student back $20.13.
 
Casarett & Doull’s Toxicology: The Basic Science of Poisons, Eighth Edition was also recommended as a book that students should rent, but the site’s confidence level was set at medium.
 
In a survey, CampusBooks found that 85% of students buy textbooks online, but almost 40% felt that they were getting a poor value when they sold the books at the end of the semester. 
 
“How to decide whether to buy or rent a textbook is the most frequently asked question we receive from students and parents around the country,” said Jeff Cohen, CEO of CampusBooks.com, in a press release. “This compelled us to work with our creative team to be the first in our industry to introduce a tool that will finally give students the confidence they have been searching for when it comes to shopping online for textbooks.”


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