Michael_EmersonBY: MICHAEL EMERSON

The thought of getting a book should be seen as a joyous one. Books lead to untold stories, doorways to new worlds and above all else a source of valuable knowledge.

Of course, as with everything in life, books are not always free and can even be quite pricey. A prime example of this is buying textbooks for college courses.

Most textbooks prices are in the hundreds, and prices sky-rocket when multiple books have to be bought. Now of course such prices seem necessary in the long run and as long as you learn from them it shouldn’t matter.

However, this logic cannot be applied if the textbooks aren’t beneficial to the course, or even used once. Spending money on useful information is one thing, but at no point is there justification for this unrelenting habit of college classes requiring textbooks that are not even being utilized.

I speak from experience as I recently took a class for cyber security ethics. Not only was it one of the most boring experiences since Ben Stein reads the phonebook, but the $84 book I purchased for the class was literally never used.

Another example of how bad it gets is when a humanities course I’d taken needed a textbook, which cost me over a $100, had stories I needed for assignments. Yet, every story we used through the course could be pulled off the Internet for free.

I’m not some rebel who thinks books should be outlawed; I love books. Though when we are told to buy books we’re never going to use, we associate the books with being a loss rather than a gain.

It’s not even a matter of greed but principle. The thought of working for something without it having any use is wasteful and cannot be the way we continue.

This practice of spending large amounts of money on textbooks never used is absolute garbage. It is ruining the fun of books and costing us as college student’s unnecessary money we could use for bettering our learning experience, or at least a decent meal every day.

I urge any college student now or in the future to do some research: find a good rental site, look for bargains, see if you can buy last year’s edition and ask any previous students of a course you are currently taking for the best price or advice.

Books are meant to be enjoyed, used for self-betterment and gaining more of that all-important knowledge. Tools such as textbooks should not be lowered to giant shredded trees worth nothing at the end of the day.