Academics / University

Students share mixed opinions on top-5 most-bought course materials

Mount Pleasant junior Lynnshea Cook looks for her class books downstairs in the book store in the Bovee University Center Tuesday afternoon. (Daytona Lee Niles | Staff Photographer)

Mount Pleasant junior Lynnshea Cook looks for her class books downstairs in the book store in the Bovee University Center Tuesday afternoon. (Daytona Lee Niles | Staff Photographer)

Despite garnering the highest sales rates in the Central Michigan University Bookstore, students have mixed opinions on the usefulness of the top-5 most-bought textbooks and materials.

Within the last 12 months, the top-selling materials sold at the Bookstore are for two required courses, MTH 105 and COM 101, according to Barry Waters, director of the CMU Bookstore.

The best selling item right now, Waters said, is the Pearson Learning Solution’s MyMathLab Plus Standalone Access Card, which almost any student in an entry-level mathematics course will need.

Senior Nick Szpond was required to purchase and use the access card while enrolled in the course. Szpond, a Livonia native, said he is not the best at math, but the tools available through the use of the access card helped him understand the material and eventually pass the course.

“I recommend the access card,” Szpond said. “There were a lot of examples and guides of how to get the right answer. If you messed up, it would show you common mistakes you could make.”

Through the access card, students have access to tools that can help in preparing for tests, helping them to better absorb and understand the material.

Some professors require the cards for homework purposes, as well as studying and preparing for exams.

Dylan Cody, a sophomore from Mount Clemens, said his MTH 105 professor gave homework assignments based on content that can be found using the access card.

“The card let us get to our homework, a lot of our homework was online,” Cody said. “We could do practice exams and other things on there, too.”

Szpond and Cody both said students taking the course should follow the requirement and buy the card.

The MyMathLab Plus Standalone Access Card is used by students enrolled in MTH 105 and, according to the CMU Bookstore’s website, sells for $103.95.

Other items making the list include the MTH 105 Course Pack at No. 2, the MyMathLab/MyStatLab Student Access Code at No. 3, COM 101 Course Supplement at No. 4 and “They Say, I Say: Moves that matter in Academic Writing” at No. 5.

Another item making the top-seller list at the Bookstore is the COM 101 Course Supplement by Wendy Papa, basic course director in the College of Communication and Fine Arts.

The supplement is required for COM 101 students and is listed at $23.75 on the CMU Bookstore’s website. Many times professors assign readings from it and students can use it while studying for tests and quizzes.

Jenna Vierk, a sophomore from Lapeer, said she used the supplement often when she was in COM 101 and claimed it helped her in class.

“We used the textbook a lot,” Vierk said. “We had to read chapters and take notes all the time. We would have exams on it frequently.”

Vierk said she doesn’t think she could have passed the class without the supplement.

Although the book can help a lot when it comes to learning and eventually passing the class, some said they hardly touched the textbook and were still able to get good final marks in the class.

Tayler Hebenstreit, a freshman from Olivet, disagreed to the necessity of purchasing the textbook.

“I did not use it at all,” Hebenstreit said. “It was referred to, but the notes that the teacher had went over everything in the book, so we did not have to read it.”

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