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Cengage and Ivy Tech Community College Partner to Save Students Money on Textbooks and Course Materials

Ivy Tech’s 90,000+ Students Gain Access to Thousands of Digital Course Materials, eTextbooks, Online Homework Platforms and More through Cengage Unlimited

Ivy Tech Community College, the largest public postsecondary institution in Indiana and the largest singly-accredited statewide community college system in the country, has partnered with Cengage to provide all 90,000 students at more than 40 locations across Indiana, as well as online, with day-one access to textbooks and course materials through Cengage Unlimited. Cengage will also provide academic services and professional development to Ivy Tech administration and faculty to facilitate hybrid and online teaching.

Cengage, the largest U.S.-based education and technology company serving the college market, provides course materials to almost half of the 20 million students pursuing higher education in the U.S.

“Ivy Tech faculty have always embraced innovative strategies such as online learning and eight-week courses. Our partnership with Cengage is another example of that innovation as it is providing enhanced faculty academic freedom in choice of course materials, while simultaneously reducing the financial burden and time burden for students to get course materials. This is yet another way that our faculty continue to meet students where they are and support their success in any way possible,” said Kara Monroe, Senior Vice President and Provost at Ivy Tech.

The cost of course materials is a top financial stress for students, according to a recent Morning Consult survey. Previously, Ivy Tech students spent on average more than $1400 annually on textbooks. Following the agreement with Cengage, Ivy Tech students whose courses use Cengage won’t have to pay for textbooks this academic year.

“Research suggests that more than a quarter of community college students don’t purchase books, typically, because they have other more pressing financial needs as many are low income, working in low wage jobs, and shouldering family responsibilities.  And those statistics were pre-COVID. We are pleased to partner with Cengage in offering free course materials across the college helping reduce the financial strain on tens of thousands of Ivy Tech students.” said Sue Ellspermann President at Ivy Tech.

Ivy Tech used funding allocated to the institution under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act to provide students with Cengage materials. The Cengage Unlimited content license model made it easy for Ivy Tech to acquire learning materials across courses, while also providing greater value for students.

“Too many students around the country have struggled for too long with cost being a barrier to education. Covid-19 has only accelerated this struggle,” said Michael E. Hansen, CEO, Cengage. “At the same time, higher education institutions are under greater pressure than ever before to lower the cost of college and adapt to new learning models while facing budget cuts and enrollment uncertainty.

“Ivy Tech and Cengage are coming together in this pioneering partnership to give students access to a wide variety of high quality, affordable learning materials that are designed to be used whether teaching is in-person, online or in a hybrid model. We’re impressed by Ivy Tech’s vision and shared commitment to quality and affordability,” continued Hansen.

Students will be able to access their Cengage course materials through the university learning management system starting on the first day of class. Students who also want print materials can rent up to four free hardcopy textbooks, with a limited shipping cost for each. Ivy Tech’s bookstore partner, Barnes & Noble Education, is facilitating the distribution of Cengage Unlimited.

Cengage Unlimited gives students access to more than 22,000 products, including eTextbooks, online homework platforms, study guides, and college success and career support.

Institutions deliver Cengage Unlimited at scale through a model called Cengage Unlimited for Institutions. Ivy Tech is one of more than 100 higher education institutions that have partnered with Cengage to provide course materials at scale through a content license model. The license model delivers value based on an institution’s unique implementation and enrollment needs. In addition to affordable student access to eTextbooks and award-winning digital learning platforms, Cengage Unlimited for Institutions offers scalable academic services to help administrators make the transition to hybrid or online learning, as well as new professional development resources to help faculty teach online.

More than 2.2 million U.S. college students have subscribed to Cengage Unlimited, and they’ve saved more than $200 million on course materials. For more information, visit:


About Ivy Tech Community College

Ivy Tech Community College serves communities across Indiana, providing world-class education and driving economic transformation. It is the state’s largest public postsecondary institution and the nation’s largest singly accredited statewide community college system. It serves as the state’s engine of workforce development, offering high-value degree programs and training that are aligned with the needs of its communities, along with courses and programs that transfer to other colleges and universities in Indiana. It is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and a member of the North Central Association.

About Cengage

Cengage is the education and technology company built for learners. As the largest US-based provider of teaching and learning materials for higher ed, we offer valuable options at affordable price points. Our industry-leading initiatives include Cengage Unlimited, the first-of-its-kind all-access digital subscription service.  We embrace innovation to create learning experiences that build confidence and momentum toward the future students want. Headquartered in Boston, Cengage also serves K-12, library and workforce training markets around the world. Visit us at or find us on Facebook or Twitter. 

eCampus News Staff

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