Returning students headed to the Cal Poly University Store might be surprised to encounter a change that could leave some singing their “A,B,C’s.”
The on-campus University Store, located in the Julian A. McPhee University Union (building 65) recently altered its textbook organization process, opting to sort texts alphabetically by authors’ last names. This organization replaces the prior system of arrangement by course, in an effort to increase availability and accessibility of course materials for all students.
Course Materials Manager Deanna Carroll said the new groupings will make the textbook purchasing process more affordable and efficient.
“In the past, if we had three professors adopt a book for three different classes, we would have to split our stock between three different places in the building,” Carroll said. “Now they’re all in one spot and all students have the same opportunity to buy the used books first.”
Prior to Fall 2018, students entered the store and searched first for their department, then for their specific course title and section. In that space, students could find all necessary materials grouped together.
With the store’s recent change in its organizational processes, students now must travel between aisles, searching for textbooks by authors’ last names.
“I think it’s been pretty easy,” business administration junior Gianna Kettman said. “I think it takes less time to find them this way. The aisles wrap around, which makes everything pretty natural to find.”
For the students who prefer not to navigate the new grounds, the University Store offers several resources to gather textbooks with ease.
Modern languages and literatures junior Lexi Frankiewich, an employee of the University Store, said students can expedite the process by coming equipped with a list of their needed materials, or by bringing their Employee Identification Number (EMPL ID), found under the personal information tab on the Cal Poly Portal.
“If students have their EMPL ID ready, we have a [Quick Response] code you can scan,” Frankiewich said. “Or even just know the author of your books and come in with a list, that makes it so easy.”
The Quick Response (QR) code, which is posted throughout the store, creates a custom book list for each student’s EMPL ID, listing necessary course materials in alphabetical order, as they will find them in the store.
The store’s website offers another method of purchase as well. For students who prefer to place online orders, store employees will gather and package purchased textbooks to be conveniently picked up in-store.
Though the new groupings may feel unfamiliar, or even daunting to returning students, Carroll is assured students will adjust to the change rather quickly.
“Once we explain the website or QR code and direct them, students say it’s so easy and nice,” Carroll said. “We just need to get the word out on campus about why we did it.”