Boundless offers students digital textbooks with reputable content—free of charge.

As college textbook prices continue to climb, a free alternative to traditional textbooks has gathered steam—and its provider claims that students at more than half of U.S. colleges are taking advantage.

Publicly launched this past August, Boundless produces digital textbooks consisting of reliable, open-licensed online content to match students’ reading material in at least 18 subject areas. Boundless primarily uses academic material from reputable sources such as open educational libraries, government resources, and other free learning sites.

Experts in multiple academic fields review gathered content and organize it into digital textbook selections that are structured based on a student’s needs. Students enter their assigned textbook title into Boundless’ website, and it locates comparable material for free, supplementing the text with visual graphics.


“To make our products easy for students to use, we ask what textbook they’ve been assigned and we align our content based on [their needs] and assigned textbook chapters,” said Ariel Diaz, co-founder and CEO of Boundless.

(Next page: How Boundless has gained popularity—and how students are using the free digital textbooks)