Editorial: Judging a Bookstore on its Aisles

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Published October 11, 2018
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The Montclarion
Junior education major Shelby LaBar reads the back of "The Odyssey" inside the Montclair State University Bookstore. Sunah Choudhry | The Montclarion

One of the biggest headaches all students have to deal with is getting their textbooks. Recently, the Montclair State University Bookstore tried to alleviate that stress by reorganizing their book collection from a course-based system to an alphabetical system.

For years, the bookstore organized textbooks by course number and students could find all the textbooks needed for a course in one pile instead of having to go from shelf to shelf for each class. Starting the fall semester of the 2018-2019 school year, the textbooks are organized based on the last name of the author.

This sudden shift has startled and confused students when they went to buy their books at the beginning of the semester. The change was seemingly overnight with no real warning that it was going to happen.

Despite this shock to returning students, Diane Pellegrino, the University Bookstore manager, reassured the students that this change is for the better.

“People do not always like change,” Pellegrino said. “But this is a good one.”

She explained that the reason the change was made was due to a new system called Discover. This new system allows students to go on to their accounts and see all of their books in one place before the semester even starts, as opposed to having to wait until syllabus week to find out what books a student needs.

Pellegrino said that this new system helps freshman students and parents more than anyone else. She explained that these new students were able to see all of the books that they needed to get online. Due to the new alphabetical order, they were able to easily find them.

Another issue with the old system was that books were getting lost in the shuffle. In the old system, the same book could be in two or three different sections of the University Bookstore because more than one course may require the same book.

Due to this, if all of the books for one course were taken, it would be difficult to find the book that a student needs. They would have to figure out what, if any, other course needed to use the same books. With this new system that is not an issue.

This change may have come as a surprise to Montclair State students, but at the end of the day this new system will go a long way to making the University Bookstore a lot more organized.

If you look at major bookstores, such as Barnes & Noble or libraries, you will see that they also organize their books in this matter. The shelves at these places are split up by genre and within each genre the books are separated in alphabetical order by author’s last name, which seems to be the most efficient system possible.

The University Bookstore is now running more smoothly than it had previously. The new organization system is easy to figure out and books are not as difficult to find. Although the books are still expensive, this new method allows the purchasing of books to be a less stressful part of college students’ lives.

 

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