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Policies & Regulations
Academic Affairs




I. OBJECTIVE & PURPOSE


This regulation establishes textbook adoption procedures with the intent to minimize the cost of textbooks for students while maintaining the quality of education and academic freedom. This regulation is promulgated pursuant to Florida Board of Governors Regulation 8.003 (see below)

Nothing in this regulation shall be construed to supersede the institutional autonomy or academic freedom of instructors involved in the selection of college textbooks, supplemental materials, and other classroom materials.

II. STATEMENT OF REGULATION


(1) Each university board of trustees shall adopt a regulation that establishes textbooks and instructional materials affordability policies to minimize the cost of required or recommended textbooks and instructional materials for students while maintaining the quality of education and academic freedom. The regulation shall provide for the following:
(a) Selection of textbooks and instructional materials through cost-benefit
analyses that enable students to obtain the highest-quality product at the
lowest available price, by considering:
1. Purchasing digital textbooks in bulk;
2. Expanding the use of open-access textbooks and instructional
materials;
3. Providing rental options for textbooks and instructional materials;
4. Increasing the availability and use of affordable digital textbooks and
learning objects;
5. Developing mechanisms to assist in buying, renting, selling, and
sharing textbooks and instructional materials;
6. The length of time that textbooks and instructional materials remain in
use;
7. An evaluation of cost savings for textbooks and instructional materials
which a student may realize if individual students are able to exercise
opt-in or opt-out provisions for the purchase of the materials.
(b) The use of innovative pricing techniques and payment options for
textbooks and instructional materials in consultation with providers
including bookstores. The pricing techniques and payment options must
include an opt-in or opt-out provision for students and may be approved
only if there is documented evidence that the options reduce the cost of
the textbooks and instructional materials.
(c) A deadline for the selection of textbooks and instructional materials each
term that shall provide sufficient lead time for bookstores to confirm
availability, source lower-cost options, explore alternatives with faculty, and
maximize the availability of used textbooks and instructional materials.
(d) A procedure to document the intent of the course instructor or the
academic department offering the course to use all items ordered, including
each individual item sold as part of a bundled package, before the selection
is finalized.
(e) A determination by the course instructor or academic department offering the
course, before a textbook or instructional material is selected, of the extent to
which a new edition differs significantly and substantively from earlier versions
and the value to the student of changing to a new edition or the extent to which
an open-access textbook or instructional material is available.
(f) A procedure(s) to make required and recommended textbooks and instructional
materials for each course offering available to students who otherwise cannot
afford the cost of the textbook including consideration of the extent to which an
open-access textbook or instructional material may be used.
(g) A procedure(s) by which students can obtain required textbooks and instructional
materials prior to receipt of their financial aid distribution, when necessary.
(h) A deadline for posting a hyperlink to lists of required and recommended textbooks
and instructional materials for at least 95 percent of all courses and course
sections offered for the upcoming term in the university’s course registration system
and on the university’s website. The designated university official shall determine
compliance with this requirement no later than forty-five (45) days prior to the
first day of classes for each term. Any request for an exception to the
compliance deadline shall be submitted in writing to the designated university
official and shall provide a reasonable justification for an exception. A course or
section added after the notification deadline is exempt from this notification
requirement. The posted list shall include the following information for each
required and recommended textbook and instructional materials:
1. the International Standard Book Number (ISBN); or
2. other identifying information which shall include, at a minimum:
a. the title,
b. all authors listed,
c. publisher,
d. edition number,
e. copyright date,
f. published date, and
g. other relevant information necessary to identify the specific textbook or
instructional materials required and recommended for each course.
(i) Consultation with school districts to identify practices that impact the cost of dual
enrollment textbooks and instructional materials to school districts, including, but
not limited to, the length of time that textbooks and instructional materials remain
in use.

(2) No employee of a state university may demand or receive any payment, loan,
subscription, advance, deposit of money, service, or anything of value, present or
promised, in exchange for requiring students to purchase a specific textbook or
instructional materials for coursework or instruction. However, an employee may
receive, subject to the requirements of the Florida Code of Ethics for Public Officers
and Employees and the outside activity and conflict of interest requirements set forth in
university regulations and collective bargaining agreements:
(a) Sample copies, instructor copies, or instructional materials. These materials
may not be sold for any type of compensation if they are specifically marked as
free samples, not for resale.
(b) Royalties or other compensation from sales of textbooks or instructional
materials that include the instructor’s own writing or work.
(c) Honoraria for academic peer review of course materials.
(d) Fees associated with activities such as reviewing, critiquing, or preparing
support materials for textbooks or instructional materials.
(e) Training in the use of course materials and learning technologies.

(3) Each university board of trustees shall provide a report, by September 30 of each year, to the Chancellor of the State University System, in a format determined by the Chancellor, that details:
(a) The selection process for high enrollment courses;
(b) Specific initiatives of the institution designed to reduce the costs of textbooks
and instructional materials;
(c) Policies implemented regarding the posting of textbook and instructional
materials for at least 95% of all courses and course sections 45 days before the
first day of class;
(d) The number of courses and course sections that were not able to meet the
posting deadline for the previous academic year; and
(e) Any additional information determined by the Chancellor.

The Chancellor will report to the Board of Governors a summary of the State
University System’s initiatives and efforts addressing textbook and instructional
materials affordability by November 1 of each year.

Authority: Section 7(c), Art. IX, Fla. Const.; BOG reg 8.003. History: New as approved by BOT 01/28/21.