Access Now shifts to an opt-out model

Access Now, a system that digitally delivers all students’ course materials at a discounted rate, is switching models to increase sustainability and affordability.

Currently, the Access Now program uses an opt-in model, which requires each individual student to purchase a subscription before the 100% refund date to avoid interruption to course materials. Although this model has been effective to date, it is not sustainable as faculty and student demand continues to increase.

Beginning spring 2022, Wichita State will transition from an opt-in model to an opt-out model. For students and faculty, this means no more codes, no more terminations if the student does not purchase the required subscription by the 100% refund date. Students who enroll in an Access Now course will be assessed a course material charge to their student account. Students will then have the freedom to opt-out by the 100% refund date if they wish to not participate in the negotiated discount price for the materials.

Wichita State’s transition to an opt-out model will reduce the hassle experienced by students at the busy time of a new semester.

In addition to the convenience of Access Now, students save an average of 20% on current electronic books and up to 60% of physical textbooks and other course materials with the delivery system.

“We anticipate this pilot program to provide digital course materials as an option for students will result in a cost savings to students, which is in alignment with our commitment to providing an affordable education,” said Dr. Shirley Lefever, interim provost of Wichita State. “The added convenience and accessibility are also features that attracted us to this program.” 

For fall 2021, 139 courses use Access Now with 63 on the waiting list to join. Beginning summer 2022, the program will be open to all faculty.

“The response of the program since its inception in summer 2018 has been remarkable,” said Andi Stipp, director of Shocker Stores. “We have grown exponentially with the number of courses and instructors who wish to participate. Students, too, are excited because it takes the thinking out of finding a textbook and it is the most affordable option in the market. Faculty like it because students all have the proper book and courseware, when applicable, to begin without fear of falling behind. Everyone is on the same page from day one.”

Students who wish to opt-out of Access Now course delivery will be able to do so through Blackboard.