2019 Implementation

Fall 2019 Implementation of AD1

In the Fall of 2019, several UNT faculty members opted-into having their course participate in Access Day One. Publishers and the office of AD1 negotiated course material costs to be competitive and significant for students. The cost of the materials was included as a course fee posted to students' accounts after registering for an AD1 course. The course fee was significantly less than market value of the textbook which helps students gain access to affordable course materials. AD1 courses were described in the Course Notes section during the student registration process. After registering for an AD1 course, students received an email providing further details about AD1 at UNT. Additionally, the email correspondence included information regarding the opt-out process that students could choose through their Canvas course. 

After students login to Canvas and enter their AD1 course, students were instructed to select Course Materials in the  menu which provides information about the cost of the traditional textbook and displays the negotiated and lower cost of current course materials. Student are also able to opt-out of participating at this time. Students who opt-out of AD1 are not able to access their course materials digitally and were issued a credit to their student account. Students who chose to continue having access by not opting out are able to access their course materials digitally through Canvas for the term. During fall 2019, students could change their status to opt-in after opting out if done before the 12th day of class (census date). 

Key Facts

  • Approximately 7,864 students registered for an AD1 course during the fall 2019 academic term.
  • Approximately 6,551 students remained in AD1 and received digital course materials through Canvas.
  • Approximately 1,313 students opted-out of AD1 through Canvas.
  • Approximately 300 students were included in the “opted-out” estimate due to circumstances precluding them from participating in AD1.
  • Individual average student savings is $78
  • Collective student savings for fall 2019 AD1 is approximately $518,000

Student Feedback

The AD1 team developed an anonymous survey administered through Qualtrics for each participating course. The survey was sent to 7,294 students and 172 students completed the survey. Each survey shared specific information about their course and the approximate savings on their course materials. Students were asked the following questions:

  • How would you describe your experience participating in AD1 during the fall 2019 semester? (scaled response from extremely satisfied to extremely dissatisfied).
    • 49% reported "extreme satisfaction"; 19% reported "somewhat satisfied"; 13% reported "extremely dissatisfied"; 13% reported "neither satisfied nor dissatisfied"; and 6% reported "somewhat dissatisfied". 
  • Do you think having access to your course materials digitally helped you succeed in your course? (single choice response: yes, no, unsure with text option)
    • 70% reported "yes"; 19% reported "no"; and 11% reported "unsure"
  • Are you interested in participating in another AD1 course at UNT? (single choice response: yes,  no, maybe with text response option)
    • 54% reported "yes"; 23% reported "no"; and 23% reported "maybe"
  • Survey respondents who indicated 'extreme dissatisfaction' or 'somewhat dissatisfied' were collected and the following themes appeared: Opt-out process, refund difficulty, technology difficulties, not the "cheapest" option on the market, preference for a physical copy, unaware of program, and wanting access to course materials beyond the term.

Lessons Learned

  • AD1 attempted to address affordability of course materials by partnering with faculty and publishers to lower the cost associated with required digital course materials. Throughout the fall 2019 implementation and after reviewing student and faculty feedback, it became apparent that the refund process was confusing or not intuitive if students chose to opt-out. AD1 is working with campus partners such as the Registrar, Student Financial Services, and Barnes & Noble to streamline this process so that if AD1 is offered again, refunds are more quickly dispersed.
  • It is important to recognize that not all courses or teaching styles are conducive to delivering digital course materials through Canvas. If AD1 is to be offered in future semesters, it will be imperative to work with faculty who understand the purpose and process of AD1 and to confirm the initiative is well suited for their course and students.
  • AD1 requires that all sections of a course participate to provide an equitable educational experience with access to digital course materials for students registering and taking the course. 
  • Further, collaborating with faculty prior to the start of the semester will be crucial so that faculty feel confident about how to answer student questions and explain the role of AD1 in the course. 
  • AD1 was only offered in a limited capacity with the courses listed below and was not advertised to UNT which limited student awareness of the initiative. If AD1 is to be offered in future semesters, an awareness campaign that describes the purpose, process, and student savings will help students recognize the initiative and be informed about their choices. 

Involved Courses

The table below includes courses that participated in the fall 2019 implementation of AD1 along with information regarding approximate student savings when compared to traditional textbook prices. 

Course College Approximate Student Savings

ACCT 4300

G. Brint Ryan College of Business


ART 1300 Visual Arts & Design $32
ART 2360 Visual Arts & Design  $74
BIOC 4540 Science $52
BIOL 1082 Science $97
BIOL 1720 Science $55
BIOL 3800 Science $66
BLAW 3430 G. Brint Ryan College of Business $68
COMM 2020 Liberal Arts & Social Sciences $90
HMGT 1450 Merchandising, Hospitality, & Tourism $61
HMGT 2460 Merchandising, Hospitality, & Tourism $43
MATH 1350 Science $79
MATH 1351 Science $79
MATH 1580 Science $79
MATH 1680 Science $63
MUTH 1410 Music $29
HLTH 1900 Education $33
HLTH 2200 Education $140
KINE 2050 Education $54
PHYS 1052 Science $75
PHYS 1410 Science $175
PHYS 1510 Science $66