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Student Textbook Audi Guidance

Audit Guidance

January 22, 2009


During December 2008, the Office of the State Comptroller issued a report on the pricing of college textbooks at both the State University and City University campus bookstores. OSC compared the pricing of textbooks at college bookstores to prices available through online booksellers. OSC also looked at (1) the availability of textbook information provided to students to determine whether students would be able to find other low cost alternatives for purchasing required textbooks and (2) revisions to new editions to determine whether requiring students purchase the new edition appear appropriate. The OSC report did not take into consideration the additional time required to receive books purchased online or the economic benefit to both New York State and the campuses by having students purchase books from local and campus bookstores.



Additional Information

OSC Textbook Pricing Disparities Report:

Both the State and Federal government passed legislation related to textbooks regarding transparent marketing, choice, pricing and purchasing of course materials. The legislation is effective July 1, 2009 and July 1, 2010, respectively. Counsel's Office is working on guidance related to these laws and will be providing that in the near future. The legislation can be found at:
State: and

For additional information, please contact the Office of the University Auditor at 518-320-1533 or

University Audit