Starting Fall 2021, the Panther Book Pack is an affordable course materials rental program providing all undergraduate students with their required course materials by the first day of class at a fixed rate of $20 per credit hour. Students are estimated to save as much as $375 on course materials per semester with the Panther Book Pack program.

How it Works

REGISTER FOR CLASSES

Upon registering for courses, you will be automatically enrolled into the program and the bookstore will start preparing your order. A charge of $20 per credit hour will be applied to your FIU student account along with your tuition.

VERIFY YOUR ORDER

Approximately 30 days before the first day of classes, you will receive an email that summarizes your required and recommended course materials and prompts you to select your fulfillment preference (options may include pick-up on campus, shipping to an off-campus address, and direct digital access in Canvas).

RECEIVE YOUR TEXTBOOKS

An email notification will be sent when your order is ready for pickup or when it ships. Your digital materials will be accessible in your course(s) within Canvas.

The Benefits

The Panther Book Pack program gives you convenient access to all of your course materials.

  • Receive all your course materials by the first day of class
  • Save 35-50% on the cost of your required course materials each term
  • Benefit from highly personalized service from our on-campus bookstore staff
  • Plan ahead with more ease and less stress because you know the cost of your course materials for every term based on the number of credits you register for
  • Save time – we negotiated the low rate of $20 per credit for you so that you don’t have to shop around for low price

Participation

Any student who would like to check on their participation status and qualifying classes for the Panther Book Pack can do so at MyFIU on the Panther Book Pack tile.

While you are automatically enrolled for the Panther Book Pack at the time that you register for classes, you may opt out  if you do not wish to participate. We encourage you to compare pricing before you do. Tally the cost of all your required course materials to make sure your total cost is not more than the Panther Book Pack’s $20 per credit hour.

If you’ve done the research and still don’t think that the Panther Book Pack is the right fit for you, you can opt out at any point from the day you receive your Panther Book Pack email until three days after the add/ drop date on the Academic Calendar for that term.

 In order to see the actual cost of each required course material, input the data in the required fields for each course you are taking. For the term, select the relevant term with the words ‘OPT OUT’ next to it. This will populate the retail cost of all the course materials in all available formats, which may include new, used, rental, digital.

 

How to Change Paricipation Status

Step 1: Access MyFIU

Step 1- Accessing MyFIU

Log in to MyFIU using your FIU credentials and locate the Panther Book Pack tile toward the bottom of the page.

Step 2: Manage Participation Status

Step 2- Manage Participation Status

Find the session you are enrolled for and click the opt-out toggle switch on the right. Students can click on the session to see all the classes they’re registered for in that session. If you’re taking multiple sessions in a semester you must opt-out from each independently. Students can use this toggle switch to opt-out or opt-in any time before the deadline. Once you have done so click “Save Changes” on the top right of the page.

 

Step 3: Finalizing Your Preferences

Step 3- Finalizing Your Preferences

Once you have clicked “Save Changes” a pop up menu will ask you to confirm the selected option. Students have until 3 days after the add/ drop date to opt-out or opt back in, after that date your selection is considered finalized and will not be able to change. We highly recommend you compare prices before finalizing this process.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS)

General Program Questions

Why is FIU doing this?

The Panther Book Pack is a new university-wide initiative that targets textbook affordability and student success. This innovative program is expected to save students thirty to fifty percent (30% to 50%) on the rental of required course materials in undergraduate courses. It will also create equitable access to materials for all students, ensuring availability by the first day of class.

Why is FIU partnering with Barnes and Noble?

Barnes & Noble is FIU’s contracted bookstore and a long-standing partner in textbook affordability initiatives. Our partnership is focused on delivering affordable course materials options to our students. Panther Book Pack is a flat-rate, one-stop shop program for course materials that delivers a highly personalized experience for students, preserves faculty choice of learning materials, and delivers deep savings to students.

Why doesn’t FIU work directly with publishers?

Publishers do not offer all the different formats of content that faculty request at the lowest price possible. Barnes & Noble provides a central platform for faculty adoptions of course materials as well as a central e-commerce and digital platform for delivery of these course materials to students.

Why not do more to promote open educational resources (OER)?

FIU and Barnes & Noble fully support and encourage the selection of OER no-cost and low-cost solutions but the selection of such materials remains a faculty decision. These resources are considered when calculating the per credit cost of the Panther Book Pack. FIU was able to achieve such a lost cost per credit hour, in part, because of the significant efforts made by our faculty to adopt no-cost or low-cost materials.

How does this benefit students?

Panther Book Pack provides all students with equitable access to course materials on or before the first day of class, which will ultimately improve their academic success. Additionally, by participating in the Panther Book Pack, students will save time and money each term.

How much will this cost?

The Panther Book Pack flat rate is $20 per undergraduate credit hour, or $300 for a 15-credit course load. Previously, FIU recommended students budget $600 for books and supplies each semester.

What is a session?

A session is a shorter than regular semester that takes places within a given term. For example, Fall B is a session, shorter than the full Fall term, taking place within the Fall term.

What is a dynamic session?

A dynamic session is a shorter than regular session that takes place anytime during the academic year. It can occur within a term or outside of a term.

What is a semester?

A semester is a sixteen-week term taking place in a given academic year. There are three semesters each academic year, Fall, Spring and Summer.

Who do I contact with questions about the Panther Book Pack?

For Panther Book Pack program questions, questions about your order, assistance evaluating cost or for general program information, please contact Barnes & Noble by emailing bookpack@fiu.edu or calling 305-348-2691.

Program Participation

How can I participate in the Panther Book Pack?

At the time you enroll in undergraduate courses, you will automatically be enrolled in the Panther Book Pack. The $20 flat rate per undergraduate credit will be posted to your FIU student account. If you find that the Panther Book Pack is not the best option for you, you may opt out. The deadline to opt-out is three (3) days after the last day to add/drop.  

Shouldn’t this program be opt-in rather than opt-out?

The objective of an opt-out program is to ensure that no student misses out on receiving their course materials prior to the start of their classes. This ensures that everyone will have their books on time while not being responsible for payment until the last day to pay after the start of each term. Students who do not wish to participate have the ability to opt-out easily on their myFIU portal.

How can I get information about the books I need so I can make an informed decision to participate or opt out?

The FIU bookstore website provides the details about the course materials needed for your classes. Visit the “Find Textbooks” page. Select your campus from the dropdown. Then select the appropriate term from the next dropdown (example: Fall 2021 OPT-OUT). You will see the required course materials for your courses once you enter the course and section numbers into the corresponding dropdowns. You will see all available textbook formats and costs. If you would like to compare that to the Panther Book Pack you may select the appropriate term with the words “Book Pack” after the term (example: Fall 2021 Book Pack).

 

What if I never verify my order by the deadline?

You will receive emails and phone calls to remind you to verify your order. If you do not verify your order, you will not receive the course materials included in the Panther Book Pack. However, if you do not opt out, you will still be billed the Panther Book Pack charge.

How can I receive my books if I have been quarantined?

Please contact the bookstore for available options. The contact phone number is 305-348-2961 and the email address is bookpack@fiu.edu.

If I never pick up my course materials or access them through Canvas, will I still get charged?

Yes. If you verified your order and did not opt out of the program, you will still be charged. If you did not verify your order and did not opt-out of the program, you will still be charged.        

What if I drop a class and already received the required course materials?

You may return the course materials for the dropped class to the FIU bookstore right away, but no later than the date outlined by Barnes & Noble when they reach out asking you to return the books. If you do not return the materials by the deadline, you will be charged the cost of these materials on your FIU student account. If you drop a class and enroll in a different class prior to receiving your course materials, the bookstore will “swap” the required course materials/access codes so that you have what you need. Upon adding a class to your schedule, you will receive a new verification email from Barnes & Noble. Once you verify your preferred fulfillment method you can obtain the course materials for the newly added courses. You must return the course materials for the dropped course to the bookstore by the deadline.          

If I choose not to participate, how do I opt out?

You may opt-out via MyFIU by clicking on the Panther Book Pack tile and then clicking the opt-out / opt-in toggle for the session you would like to change your participation status for.

If I opted out of the Panther Book Pack for a session and then add another class for that session, do I need to opt-out again?

No, you will remain opted out for the session once you have made the opt-out selection in MyFIU regardless of whether you add additional courses. If you would like to opt back in because you have added courses, you may do so on MyFIU following the same steps you did to opt out. If you are unsure as to whether you are opted in or out for a given session or course, you may check on that in detail in MyFIU via the Panther Book Pack tile.

 

Can I opt out if I picked up my course materials?

Yes, you have until three days after add/drop for the given session, as outlined in the Academic Calendar to opt-out of the program, even if you already picked up or received your course materials. However, you will have to return your course materials to Barnes & Noble at the time you opt out, or no later than the deadline provided by Barnes & Noble to you via email. If you do not return your course materials, the charges for the Panther Book Pack will go back on your student account.

What do I do if I have not received my course materials?

Your order cannot be processed until your course materials are verified. You will receive an email beginning 30 days prior to the first day of class to verify your course materials for each term. If you have already verified your order, call or email the bookstore at bookpack@fiu.edu and give them your order number so they can check on the status of your order.

What do I do if I am missing a course material or received the wrong one?

Send a copy of the syllabus to bookpack@fiu.edu. Make sure to include the course name and section for which you are missing materials and your contact information.

When is the deadline to opt out?

The deadline to opt out is three days after the last day to add/drop for the semester session, as listed on the Academic Calendar. The opt-out deadline date for each of your courses, as well as your participation status in the Panther Book Pack is visible in your MyFIU, via the Panther Book Pack tile.     

 

 

Can I choose to participate in the Panther Book Pack program for some classes but not others?

The Panther Book Pack program is designed to be an all-in or all-out solution by session for the lowest flat rate possible. Participation is by session for all courses, not by individual course, therefore participation in some courses but not others in each session is not possible. 

What if I do not want to participate, and I want to buy my course materials somewhere else?

You may opt out of the program through your MyFIU page via the Panther Book Pack tile by clicking the opt-out / opt-in toggle for each session each semester. If you opt out of the Panther Book Pack, you are responsible for obtaining your course materials independently, either through Barnes & Noble at FIU or another supplier. If you decide that you would like to participate after you opt out, you may opt back into the program following the same steps you took to opt out.

Why do I see that my course “does not qualify” for the Panther Book Pack?

The following undergraduate courses are excluded from the Panther Book Pack due to the location or scheduling:

  • Dual enrollment courses taking place in a high school, NOT on an FIU campus
  • Courses that are part of a dynamic session as defined above
  • Courses taking place in a location outside of local FIU campuses and satellite locations, such as, China
  • Courses taking place in the Fall D session
  • Courses taking place in a dynamic session
How can I confirm that my courses qualify for the Panther Book Pack?

You can visit MyFIU and click on the Panther Book Pack tile. Then select a term and a session to see all enrolled courses and their qualification status for the Panther Book Pack program.

If I add or drop classes, can I change my decision about participating or opting out?

Yes, you can change your decision until the opt-out deadline, which is three days following the add/drop deadline for the given session, per FIU’s Academic Calendar. If you already received your course materials, you will need to return them to the bookstore, prior to or immediately after opting out.

 

What is the deadline for opting out?

You can opt out and opt back in for each session until three days following the add/drop deadline for the given session, per FIU’s Academic Calendar

 

Is there a limit on how many times I can opt-out or opt back in?

No, there is no limit to how many times you opt-out or opt back into the Panther Book Pack via MyFIU. However, you will be unable to take any further action beyond the opt-out / opt-in deadline, which is three days after the last day to add/drop.

If I drop classes, will I receive a refund?

The Panther Book Pack charges will be added to and removed from your FIU student account in the same way tuition is when you add and drop a class. You will be charged $20 per undergraduate credit hour for each participating course that you are enrolled in. Just like you are credited tuition for any course dropped prior to the add/drop deadline, you will be credited the Panther Book Pack charge for such dropped courses. Students must return any course materials received for the dropped classes prior to or immediately upon dropping the classes but no later than the deadline outlined by Barnes & Noble. Students who do not return the course materials for dropped classes will be charged the cost of those course materials on their student accounts.

What is the deadline to return course materials for classes that I drop after receiving my course materials?

All course materials received for courses that are later dropped or if opting out of the Panther Book Pack must be returned to Barnes & Noble by the date outlined in the communications from Barnes & Noble requiring the return of the materials.

Will I receive physical or electronic copies of the required materials?

All course materials are provided in the format required by the instructor. If you would like a format other than that required by the instructor, you may purchase that alternative format from the bookstore directly at the regular price. An alternative format is not part of the Panther Book Pack rental program.

How can I be sure that this will lower my overall course materials costs?

FIU is committed to providing affordable course materials and ensuring equitable access to course materials for our students. We understand that there isn’t one solution that will work for all students all the time. However, after much analysis, we deem that the Panther Book Pack rental program offers the greatest savings to the majority of our undergraduate students most of the time.

We urge you to compare the cost of purchasing your course materials independently versus paying $20 per undergraduate credit hour each session. You should also consider other program benefits of the Panther Book Pack in your analysis, such as guaranteed delivery of required course materials on or before the first day of class by a single vendor. Ultimately, each student should determine what the best option is each term. This program is intended to offer the most affordable and equitable access option for most.

Do I have to participate?

Your participation is optional. If you wish to opt out, you may do so on the MyFIU portal.

Will I receive a hard copy book or a digital book for my course through the Panther Book Pack?

It depends on the instructor’s preference. The instructor selects the required format in which the course materials should be used by the students. If an instructor adopts an e-book, that is what will be included in the Panther Book Pack. If an instructor selects a hard copy, then that is what will be included in the Panther Book Pack.

What course materials are excluded from the Panther Book Pack?

The following items are excluded from the Panther Book Pack: school supplies, kits, uniforms, art supplies, calculators, non-required course materials, and items that the FIU bookstore cannot source. An example of items that cannot be sourced by the FIU bookstore is a Netflix subscription.

Your personalized verification email from Barnes & Noble will outline any exclusions form the Panther Book Pack.

Why am I being charged for the Panther Book Pack for a course that does not have any course materials?

For the lowest institutional per-credit flat rate, all undergraduate courses must participate in the program. Courses with no required course materials, or course materials that are low- or no-cost to you, will all be part of the Panther Book Pack program and you will be charged the flat rate of $20 per credit hour. By the same token, for courses with very expensive materials or multiple required materials you will also only be charged the flat rate of $20 per credit hour. Under this subscription model, this should balance out and ultimately pass on significant savings to you across multiple courses. However, if the $20 flat rate is not the most affordable option when looking at your total cost for the term, you may opt out of the Panther Book Pack program for that term but will be responsible for obtaining the required course materials on your own.

I’ve logged into myFIU and I see the Panther Book Pack tile and details but I cannot opt-out or opt-in. What do I do?

First, try a different browser. You can access an article about supported PantherSoft browsers. You shnould also clear your cache and cookies. You can access an article with instructions on how to do this by clicking the link. Finally, you can try incognito mode on your browser. If it still does not work, please contact bookpack@fiu.edu with your Panther ID, full name and the steps you’ve taken. We will engage FIU IT to help with a resolution.

Payment

Do I pay FIU or the bookstore for the Panther Book Pack?

The Panther Book Pack charge will be included on your FIU student account along with other charges such as tuition and fees. This allows you to use financial aid, scholarships, etc. to pay for your course materials.

There may be additional costs incurred when verifying your purchase with Barnes & Noble that are required to be paid out of pocket as follows. Upon verifying your order, if you add recommended textbooks, extra supplies, materials or merchandise, you will be required to pay the bookstore with a debit card, credit card, or your FIU OneCard for those additional items. If you choose to have your materials shipped upon verifying your order, an additional shipping charge will be added.

Will I be charged a late fee if I do not pay the Panther Book Pack charge by the last day to pay for tuition and fees?

You will not be charged a late fee if you do not pay the Panther Book Pack charge to FIU by the due date for payment of tuition and fees. However, holds may be applied to your FIU student account if the balance is not paid in full. The balance will remain on your account indefinitely.

Will there be holds placed on my student account if I do not pay for the Panther Book Pack charge?

If you have an outstanding Panther Book Pack charge on your student account, you will have holds placed. Such holds may prevent you from registering for the upcoming term, obtaining your diploma and obtaining transcripts.

How can I dispute the Panther Book Pack charge on my student account?

If you have a Panther Book Pack charge on your account and you opted-out of the program by the deadline for that term, you may email the bookstore at bookpack@fiu.edu. The bookstore will work with FIU to resolve the issue and will communicate with you regarding a solution.

Digital Course Material

How do I access my digital course materials included in the Panther Book Pack?

There are a number of ways to access digital materials included in the Panther Book Pack. You will know the delivery method for each of the included materials when verify your course materials and select your fulfillment method from Barnes & Noble at FIU.

Some digital materials will be accessible with a physical access code that you will receive with your other materials as part of the Panther Book Pack. Follow the instructions on the access code card.

Other digital materials will be available directly in your Canvas course. This may be available to you in one of three ways:

  1. Access Code Reveal: You will click on the Panther Book Pack link in the course in Canvas. This will take you to the Barnes & Noble digital materials platform and a code will be revealed to you for access to your course materials. You will take this code and use it to access the materials based on the directions provided with the code.
  2. Barnes & Noble direct access: You will click on the Panther Book Pack link in the course in Canvas. This will take you to the Barnes & Noble digital materials platform and you will be able to click on the materials and access them directly through this platform.
  3. Publisher direct access: You will see a publisher link in the Canvas course, for example McGraw Hill Connect or MyMathLab. You will click on that link and it will take you directly to the course materials on the publishers site and you will have codeless access.
What if I opt out after having already used the digital materials?

Your access to the digital materials will be revoked on the opt-out deadline. If you need to gain access to the digital materials again after the opt-out deadline and after the access was revoked, you may purchase the digital materials from the bookstore at the regular retail price. Once you have purchased the materials you can regain access with the physical or digital access code provided with your purchase. Any work completed prior to the access being revoked will still be there when you regain access.

What do I do if I’m supposed to have digital course materials with my Panther Book Pack and I log into my course in Canvas and do not see the Panther Book Pack link or a publisher link?

If your digital materials are not available in Canvas or the appropriate links are not in place, please notify your instructor and contact Barnes & Noble at bookpack@fiu.edu to have the issue resolved right away.

Financial Aid Advance, Scholarships and Panther Book Pack

How can I use my financial aid advance (formerly known as the book advance) to pay for the Panther Book Pack?

If you are a financial aid recipient and you are eligible for enough aid to cover your tuition, fees and the Panther Book Pack charge, the aid will automatically be applied to the Panther Book Pack charge on your FIU student account, and any remaining funds will be issued to you as a refund. The financial aid is automatically applied to the Panther Book Pack. You do not need to apply or opt into the book advance to have it pay for the Panther Book Pack charge. If you are not eligible for enough aid to cover the Panther Book Pack then you will be responsible for paying FIU for the remaining balance on your student account after the financial aid has been applied.

For more information about the financial aid advance, please visit the One Stop site.

Can I still get a financial aid advance (formerly known as the book advance) if I participate in the Panther Book Pack?

Yes, students who participate in the Panther Book Pack program and are eligible for enough aid to cover all charges on their FIU student account and still have funds remaining, may receive a financial aid advance. This financial aid advance cannot exceed the difference between the maximum allowable advance amount ($650) and the total cost of the Panther Book Pack based on your registered credits. Here are some examples:

  1. Student A is eligible for $400 in advance funds after aid is used to cover all tuition, fees, and Panther Book Pack charges on the student’s account. The student is taking 15 credit hours, which means a $300 flat rate for required course materials through the Panther Book Pack. The student will be able to opt in to receive $100 in financial aid advance ($400 – $300 = $100).
  2. Student B is eligible for $850 in advance funds after aid is used to cover all tuition, fees, and Panther Book Pack charges on the student’s account. The student is taking 12 credit hours, which means a $240 flat rate for required course materials through the Panther Book Pack. The student will be able to opt in to receive $410 in financial aid advance ($650 – $240 = $410). Note: The maximum allowable advance is $650 so even thought Student B is eligible for more than that after payment of all charges on the student account, the student cannot qualify for more than the $650 advance. The remaining amount of aid that is not paid to FIU or taken as the financial aid advance will be refunded to the student by FIU.

For more information about the financial aid advance, please visit the One Stop site.

May I get a book advance if I opt-out of the Panther Book Pack?

Yes, if you opt-out of the Panther Book Pack you qualify for the full book advance amount of $650 based on the amount of eligible aid that you have after covering the cost of tuition and fees.

For more information about the financial aid advance, please visit the One Stop site.

Why would I opt into the financial aid advance (formerly the book advance) if I am participating in the Panther Book Pack?

If you are eligible for the financial aid advance after covering the cost of tuition, fees and the Panther Book Pack charge on your FIU student account, you may still want to take advantage of the advance for the purchase of other materials. The financial aid advance may be used to purchase materials and supplies via the FIU OneCard at Barnes & Noble, Panther Tech and Ricoh. You may want to purchase other school supplies, devices, or tech supplies with the advance funds.

For more information about the financial aid advance, please visit the One Stop site.

 

Will my financial aid or scholarship pay for the Panther Book Pack?

Yes, financial aid will be applied first to tuition, then fees and then charges on your FIU student account. Therefore, if enough aid is available to cover it all or cover most of it, then it will be applied to all up to the maximum amount of aid. In instances where your financial aid is not enough to cover the Panther Book Pack in part or in its entirety, then you are required to pay the difference to FIU by the last day to pay for the term, as outlined in the Academic Calendar.

For more information about the financial aid advance, please visit the One Stop site.

Textbook Condition

May I highlight and write in the textbooks I rent from the Panther Book Pack?

Yes, these are your textbooks for the term to be used as you normally would, but you must return the materials in reusable condition at the end of the semester

What happens if my book is damaged, destroyed or lost?

You are responsible for the course materials rented through the Panther Book Pack and we expect gentle use so that the materials can be used by others in the future. But we know things happen! Contact the FIU bookstore team to work it out on a case-by-case basis if your course materials are lost or damaged during the term.

Purchasing Textbooks

Is it possible for me to keep any of the course materials at the end of the semester?

Yes! If you wish to keep the course materials or retain access to the digital content beyond the semester, you may purchase them. Contact the bookstore for details. The charges for a purchase of print and digital course materials are to be paid directly to the bookstore.

How much will it cost to keep a print textbook or retain access to a digital version?

The rental buyout price is a discounted price based upon the market-value of that unique material. The bookstore can offer the exact price for each textbook or digital material a student would like to purchase.

How do I pay for course materials I want to keep?

Coordinate the purchase of course materials directly with the bookstore. Charges for the purchase of a textbook or digital version rented through the Panther Book Pack are not transferred to your FIU student account.

Dual Enrollment

I am a dual enrollment student. Do I participate in the Panther Book Pack?

If you are a dual enrollment student taking courses at your high school, your course does not qualify for the Panther Book Pack. You are responsible for coordinating your course materials with your high school dual enrollment administrator. If you are a dual enrollment student taking classes online or at an FIU campus, you are automatically enrolled in the Panther Book Pack and should verify your course materials and select a fulfillment method when you receive the verification email from Barnes & Noble.

Accessible Format

What if I need an accessible format due to an impairment or disability?

If you need course materials in accessible formats you should visit the Disability Resource Center (DRC) webpage. There you will find information on DRC services, including the procedure to request accessible format textbooks.

 

Will I have access to accessible course materials (e.g. large type)?

We are committed to providing accessible material and the local FIU bookstore team can help with any special requests. Additionally, students may visit the Disability Resource Center (DRC) webpage. There you will find information on DRC services, including the procedure to request accessible format textbooks.

 

Privacy

What are the privacy rules?

BNC is committed to protecting all personal information and take the utmost precautions to secure and store data.

How will my personal information be used?

The data provided to the bookstore is only used to help us deliver all your course materials based upon your selected courses.

Can the bookstore sell my personal information to third parties?

No. We are committed to the safeguarding of all personal information.

Helpful Contacts

Call CenterPanther Book Packbookpack@fiu.edu305-348-2691
FIU Director of RetailKenia Juncokjunco@fiu.edu305-348-7246
B&N MMC Store ManagerMichael Comiskeybksfiu@bncollege.com 305-348-3925
B&N Textbook Manager Gaby Pappaterra-Lopezfiubook@fiu.edu305-348-3923
B&N BBC Store Manager Erica Garveybksfiunmiami@bncollege.com305-919-5580