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Open Textbooks and Library-owned e-Textbooks

Conestoga is concerned about the rising costs of textbooks for students. As a result, an increasing number of courses are integrating free and low-cost textbooks as required resources, rather than pricey textbooks. 

There are three types of resources that faculty use to reduce costs for students.

Textbooks are valuable. They're authoritative resources that bring all the information students need together in one place. Faculty from across the continent are collaborating to produce "open" textbooks and other education resources to combat high costs. Rather than selling their authored work to publishers, they are releasing it to the world to access for free. The word "open" generally indicates that the works can be reused. In some cases, you might be able to modify the resource according to the needs of those wishing to use the resources. Make sure to check the open license to determine what you can do with an “open” work.

Conestoga's Library Services provides access to e-books which are increasingly used as required textbooks in curriculum. These books are paid for by Conestoga, so students may access them at no additional cost. Some e-books are available for unlimited use, others only allow a single user at a time. Unfortunately, not all textbooks can be purchased as e-books by libraries, due to publisher restrictions.

Free resources are those that have been published on the internet publicly. Generally, anyone is allowed to access these resources for informational purposes. However, free differs from "open" in that information that is simply freely available does not imply that you can reuse or modify it for your own purposes. You must review terms of use, and request permissions from the publishers of free information if you wish to use it for more then your personal, informational needs.

Consult the library Course Readings (eReserves) page to find courses that use Open or Library-owned textbooks, videos and other readings as their required or supplemental resources.