Pace of Change in College Course Materials Accelerates

Press Release
Nov 26, 2019

Rockville (MD), November 26, 2019 — The college publishing industry in the U.S. has undergone significant change in recent years and the disruption intensified in the 2019-2020 academic year with further disruption on the horizon, according to the newly released report College Course Materials Trends and Outlook 2020-2022, from Simba Information.

“The future of course materials very well may not be in the compilation of content, such as in a book, but in apps and tools that invoke AI to move a student through a learning process that reacts to a student’s mastery of a given topic,” said Kathy Mickey, managing editor of the Education Group at Simba Information.

The report examines the accelerated pace of change that is altering how publishers create course materials, how institutions offer them and how students access them. Among the topics covered in the report are:

  • How a focus on skills and workforce development is permeating curriculum redevelopment at all types of institutions;
  • The move to more affordable course materials models such as inclusive access, digital products and print rentals;
  • The accelerating pace of implementation of open source materials.

Looking ahead, Simba concludes that providers of course materials will continue to deal with a market under pressure to contain costs. As the types of course materials change and as publishers and bookstores shake out how students will get the materials they need, Simba projects new course materials as a whole will shrink from an estimated $3.32 billion in 2018 to $2.91 billion in 2022.

College Course Materials Trends and Outlook 2020-2022 stands alone as an overview of the changing market for instructional resources in the coming years through 2022. The report also is a companion to State of College Course Materials 2018-2019 released in September 2019.

College Course Materials Trends and Outlook 2020-2022 examines publisher strategies for course materials and provides segment growth forecasts through 2022 for new course materials—including print textbooks, etextbooks and digital media—as well as the persistent used-textbook segment.

For more information on Simba’s new report, College Course Materials Trends and Outlook 2020-2022, visit: or call  (US): 888.297.4622 (Int): +1.240.747.3091.

About Simba Information
Simba Information
 is widely recognized as the leading authority for market intelligence in the media and publishing industry. Simba's extensive information network delivers top quality, independent perspective on the people, events and alliances shaping the media and information industry. Simba publishes newsletters and research reports that provide key decision-makers at more than 15,000 client companies around the globe with timely news, analysis, exclusive statistics and proprietary industry forecasts. For more information, please visit

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