The University of Massachusetts Amherst

UMass Textbook Information


Deadline to enter texts for Winter 2019 (first day of Winter 2019 registration)
Deadline to enter texts for Spring 2019 (one day before first day of Spring 2019 registration)
Compliance deadline for Fall 2018 (one day before first day of Fall 2018 registration)

Deadline to enter texts for Fall 2018 CPE courses


In order to comply with the Higher Education Opportunity Act (HEOA) of 2008 and to allow students to maximize their savings when ordering textbooks, faculty should enter their course materials information into the Course Materials tool no later than the day before the first day of registration for a given term. Please note that even if a course does not have a textbook or associated course materials, faculty must check off the “no textbook needed” option within the course materials tool to be in compliance with HEOA.

UMass Textbook Frequently Asked Questions

What does the Higher Education Opportunity Act of 2008 (HEOA) require that faculty do by the time registration opens?

The 2008 Higher Education Opportunity Act language reads: “To the maximum extent practicable, each institution of higher education receiving Federal financial assistance shall—“Disclose, on the institution’s internet course schedule and in a manner of the institution’s choosing, the ISBN (International Standard Book Number) and retail price information of required and recommended college textbooks and supplemental materials for each course listed in the institution’s course schedule used for preregistration and registration purposes” HEOA requires that the ISBN and retail price of required and optional textbooks as well as supplemental materials need to be entered on the institution’s internet course schedule (SPIRE) and in a manner of the institution’s choosing. While entering these materials on SPIRE might appear to satisfy that requirement, there is no way to track compliance (which we are required to do by law). The University has chosen eCampus FAST Adoption Tool as the compliance tool whereby these texts are entered by faculty and compliance tracked, but students can purchase texts wherever they want. 

Does HEOA compliance require using the eCampus FAST tool?
While HEOA does not require the use of the Course Materials tool, the University has chosen the Course Materials tool as the compliance tool, so it needs to be used. 

Is it a legal requirement according to the HEOA to use the eCampus Fast Course Materials tool to list textbooks?
HEOA does advocate the use of a specific tool, but it does say, “in a manner of the institution’s choosing” (which in this case is the eCampus FAST Course Materials tool as the chosen UMass compliance tool).  

Is it sufficient to list required and recommended course materials on SPIRE?
No. The listing of texts in SPIRE under “Class Overview” does not populate the textbook field in SPIRE; the eCampus FAST Tool is the only way to list the course materials.

How do I post a note suggesting that my students purchase their textbooks at the local bookstore? 
Faculty can post notes to students in the eCampus FAST tool.

If I do not have any texts for my course, do I still need to indicate this in the Course Materials tool in order to be in compliance with HEOA?
Yes. Just check the box in the eCampus FAST Tool indicating “Textbooks are not required for this course.”

Do textbook selections carry over to subsequent semesters for a certain course?
Yes and no. You need to enter textbooks every semester, but once in the Course Materials tool you can select from texts used in previous semesters.

Does HEOA apply to other materials that students might need to purchase for my course (art supplies, etc.)?
Yes. You should list those materials as well in the eCampus FAST tool.

If my course is cross-listed with another department, do I need to post my textbook information under that course number as well?

How do I know that my textbook information has been saved once I enter it?
Click the submit button to confirm the adoption request.

What happens if I enter the information for my course and then the course number changes? Do I need to enter it again?
Yes. That information does not carry over.

I understand that HEOA requires us to inform students of the books that we require our students to purchase but I am not able to do this until after the registration deadline. The deadline is a federal guideline and does not take this into consideration. In cases where a class was just added, faculty has not yet been assigned to course or other institutional impediment to meeting the deadline, HEOA states that when “…the institution determines that the disclosure of the information described in this subsection is not practicable for a college textbook or supplemental material, then the institution shall so indicate by placing the designation “To Be Determined” in lieu of the information required under this subsection.”