Access & Affordability
Affordable Instructional Resources (AIR) is a network of Northwestern faculty and staff interested in reducing the course material costs in order to create more inclusive and accessible learning environments.
Northwestern students are expected to budget upwards of $1,600 per year for books and supplies. These costs vary by discipline and can negatively affect academic performance, especially for students from low or middle income backgrounds. While scholarships, grants, and loans help with tuition and housing, textbooks and supplies tend to fall directly within the student’s family or individual contribution, causing disparity in our classrooms.
Steps You Can Take
Place Timely Textbook OrdersTo help students prepare for their courses, the 2008 Higher Education Opportunity Act requires that all course material information be made available to students prior to pre-registration.Learn more about textbook orders
Utilize Library ResourcesNorthwestern Libraries provide a variety of services to support course affordability on campus, including syllabi review, OER bibliographies, and course reserve services.Learn more about library services
Explore Open Educational ResourcesOER are free educational materials that provide faculty the freedom to adapt and distribute course materials without restrictions and at no cost to students.Learn more about OER
See Grant OpportunitiesFunded by the Office of the Provost and the Libraries, the annual OER grant supports faculty who are interested in using and adapting openly-licensed educational materials.Learn more about the OER grant
Additional Programs at NorthwesternThere are a variety of programs at Northwestern designed to provide free or low-cost books, printing, software, and laptops to students.Learn more about other programs
Contact UsAIR team members are available to meet with you or your department to discuss options for lowering the cost of your course materials.EMAIL US