Changes to Textbook Policy

From the Interim Provost and the Vice President for Finance and Management


Recently enacted federal legislation has effected important changes in the deadlines for textbook orders. Please read the following information carefully.

On August 14, 2008, Congress passed the Higher Education Opportunity Act (Public Law 110–315) (HEOA) and reauthorized the Higher Education Act of 1965, as amended (HEA). SUNY System Administration assembled a group to review the extensive legislation to determine its impact on SUNY campuses and to provide advice on meeting the new requirements of the law. The legislation is far-reaching, affecting mostly the operations and reporting provisions of offices such as Financial Aid, Registrar, University Police, Institutional Research, and many others. Those offices are being informed about compliance procedures by System Administration and/or other centralized agencies.

One portion of the law, however, will affect Buffalo State more broadly: Section 133 of the HEOA requires institutions to disclose certain information relating to textbooks on all Internet course schedules.

Effective July 1, 2010, institutions that maintain Internet course schedules will have to post International Standards Book Numbers (ISBN) and retail price information for required and recommended textbooks and supplemental materials for each listed course. If the ISBN is not available, the campus must disclose the author, title, publisher, and copyright date of the textbook instead. If that is not practicable, the schedule must state “to be determined.” Printed course schedules must advise students that textbook information is available on the campus’s Internet course schedule along with its URL.

Additionally, campuses must provide their affiliated bookstore upon its request, and “as soon as practicable,” the institution’s course schedule for the subsequent “academic period,” the number of students in each course, the maximum student enrollment in each course, and the ISBN and retail price of all required or recommended textbooks and supplemental materials.

The college plans to comply with this legislation by including links to the textbook information for summer 2010 and fall 2010—the schedules that will be produced in spring 2010—in both the online course listings and within Internet course schedules in Banner. Consequently, textbook information must be provided to the Buffalo State bookstore earlier than usual, so that students can view the information along with their course listings.

For this reason, starting next semester, the faculty textbook requisition deadlines have been moved up by two weeks for summer and five weeks for fall. Those deadlines for summer and fall will now systematically occur on the last Friday in February (beginning February 26, 2010). The spring textbook requisition deadline has been moved up to a mid-September Friday (beginning September 17, 2010). Specific dates for future semesters are reflected in the college’s academic calendar.

Additional information and guidelines will be shared with faculty through chairs’ and deans’ offices. For more information about the HEOA, visit the U.S. Department of Education’s Web site. Questions about this legislation may be directed to the Finance and Management Office.


Correction: October 8, 2009
The original version of this article contained an editing error in the textbook order dates. The preceding text has been amended to include the correct dates—February 26, 2010, for summer and fall 2010, and September 17, 2010, for spring 2011. We regret the error.