Zero Textbook Cost Courses

New York State has provided funding to promote the use of Open Education Resources (OER) in the CUNY and SUNY systems. At the CUNY School of Professional Studies (CUNY SPS), faculty and instructional designers are working hard to convert courses that currently use expensive textbooks to Zero Textbook Cost (ZTC) sections. The number of ZTC sections offered by the School has grown from 35 sections in Spring 2017 to 208 sections in Fall 2021, saving CUNY SPS students over $1,400,000. Instead of publisher’s textbooks, ZTC courses use a mix of OER textbooks, links to scholarly and professional websites, resources from CUNY library databases, and multimedia lectures created by CUNY SPS professors.

ZTC At A Glance

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$1,400,000+

CUNY SPS student savings

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98%

Gen Ed courses are ZTC or low-cost

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208

Total zero textbook cost sections

CUNY SPS is home to CUNY’s first bachelor’s “Z Degrees.” It is now possible to complete the Communication & Media, Sociology, and Liberal Studies undergraduate degree programs without ever purchasing a textbook. In addition, as of Fall 2021, 98% of General Education sections are ZTC or low-cost (LTC) with textbooks costs under $25 dollars. Additional course conversions and Z Degrees are planned to launch this year.

Zero Textbook Cost Sections

To find Zero Textbook Cost and Low Textbook Cost (textbook cost under $25) sections, search for the Zero Textbook Cost and Low Textbook Cost Attributes in CUNYfirst or CUNY Global Search. See the video above for instructions.