ANN ARBOR, Michigan, April 18, 2019 – The expense of higher education is prohibitive to many. Today, Western Sydney University (WSU) announced the extension of its partnership with ProQuest to offset one major piece of that cost – textbooks.
Through WSU's digital textbook program, all 10,000 first-year students at the university's 10 teaching campuses located across the Western Sydney region in Australia receive access to textbooks through Ebook Central, ProQuest's ebook platform. More than 200 titles from 60 leading academic publishers are available electronically at no cost to students via the WSU library.
"Western Sydney University piloted our digital textbook program with ProQuest in 2017, and today we're pleased to announce its continuation," said Professor Denise Kirkpatrick, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Academic) at WSU. "Over the past two years, digital textbooks have substantially reduced costs for many of our students. Our university is committed to ensuring their success in the classroom and beyond – and removing this financial burden while simplifying access to course material is an important step."
In addition to being no-cost for students, the digital textbooks offer distinct advantages over hard copy materials. They allow for anytime, anywhere access to classroom materials – they can be read online or downloaded onto the students' and faculty members' preferred devices, including their smartphones and tablets. Users can search textbooks instantly for keywords, phrases and concepts, eliminating time spent hunting for content. As in a physical book, they can highlight, cite and annotate directly in each text. In addition, the WSU library uses reading lists from the Leganto coursepack service so students can link directly to the titles they need from course syllabi.
"Our partnership with Western Sydney University is our largest digital textbook program, and we're thrilled to extend it to another generation of students," said Rich Belanger, Senior Vice President and General Manager, ProQuest Books. "ProQuest works directly with academic publishers to curate content and manage rights so WSU doesn't have to worry about this burden. This helps them support their students and faculty and focus on their educational and research goals. By integrating the textbooks directly into Ebook Central, we provide a single, unified platform to further simplify the experience for students, faculty and the library."
ProQuest supports the important work in the world's research and learning communities. The company curates six centuries of content – the world's largest collection of journals, ebooks, primary sources, dissertations, news and video – and builds powerful workflow solutions to help libraries acquire and grow collections that inspire extraordinary outcomes. ProQuest products and services are used in academic, K-12, public, corporate and government libraries in 150 countries.
Along with its companies and affiliates Ex Libris, Alexander Street and Bowker, ProQuest helps its customers achieve better research, better learning and better insights. For more information, visit our ProQuest Connect and Extraordinary Stories blogs, and follow us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.