EKU BookSmart Program

Getting Your Textbooks is Now Free and Easy

Eastern Kentucky University understands the many challenges students face when pursuing education. One of those barriers is the cost of textbooks. In an effort to eliminate obstacles on the path to a college degree, we’ve partnered with Barnes & Noble College to provide free textbooks for all EKU students. The EKU BookSmart program provides students with all required textbooks for the semester, before classes start, at no additional cost.

Once registered for classes, your textbooks will be gathered and packaged for you in your Big E Box. Study hard, and use your books while classes are in session, then return them at the end of the semester. It’s that simple!

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EKU BookSmart Program - Easy as 1-2-3

Textbooks are free for ALL students with EKU BookSmart! It’s easy to take advantage of this new program:

  1. Register for classes.
  2. Your Big E Box filled with the required books and course materials arrive from the EKU Bookstore at no cost to you.
  3. Study hard, then return your books at the end of the semester using the provided pre-paid return label.

BookSmart FAQs

Are online students eligible for the EKU BookSmart Program?


Will I own the books I receive?

No. EKU BookSmart is a textbook rental program. Textbooks will be on loan for use throughout the semester, but must be returned to the Barnes & Noble @ EKU Bookstore at the end of the semester. There will be an opportunity to purchase textbooks you want to keep at a discounted price.

Can I mark or highlight in my books?

Yes – you may mark or highlight in these textbooks.

If I prefer digital or print versions of the books, can I receive my preferred format?

The book format is selected by faculty during the course scheduling process. This is the format that will be delivered to students.

What if I drop or add a class?

Contact the Barnes and Noble @ EKU Bookstore.

Can I pick up books in the EKU Bookstore?

Yes. You may pick up your textbooks in the bookstore instead of having them delivered to you. During the confirmation process that will be sent to you via email students will select their preferred delivery method. 

What if I want to keep my book(s) at the end of the semester?

You have the option to purchase your books from Barnes & Noble at a discounted rate at the end of the semester.

What happens if I do not return the books to Barnes and Noble?

First of all, please take care of your textbooks on loan and return them at the end of the semester. You are responsible for these textbooks and if you do not return your textbooks no later than the 14th day after the end of the academic semester, you will be charged in accordance with the terms and conditions of the textbook loan agreement.  Students who have not returned their books will not be allowed to participate in the BookSmart program the following semester.

Will I receive one-time use codes and/or access codes?

Yes. One-time use codes and/or access codes will be included in your Big E Box.

Will I receive "recommended" textbooks?

No. Textbooks that are designated as “recommended” will not be included as part of your Big E Box.

Do I have to pay for shipping?

No, your Big E Box will be shipped to you free of charge. You’ll also get a return shipping label to cover shipping costs when it’s time to send back your books at the end of the semester.

Will dual credit students receive free textbooks?

No, high school students enrolled as dual credit students will not be able to participate in the EKU BookSmart Program. See information here about the EKU Dual Credit program costs.

Is BookSmart really no cost to students?

Yes, EKU wants to make sure every student has every opportunity to succeed and earn a college degree. There is not a fee for students to participate in the program, and a fee will not be added to your account for books. The EKU BookSmart program was created as a way to provide students with an additional level of financial support in their educational experience.

Can I opt out?

Yes, if you choose to purchase your books yourself, you may opt out of EKU BookSmart by selecting the Opt Out option at the conclusion of the registration process. EKU will not provide your textbooks and course materials if you opt out of EKU BookSmart.

How can I find out more about BookSmart?

More information about EKU BookSmart can be found on the important dates and information page. If you have further questions about the EKU BookSmart program, please contact the Barnes & Noble @ EKU Bookstore or dial (859) 622-2696.

  • “I can confidently say that — as someone who doesn’t even live in the United States — EKU’s online program has been extremely accommodating and flexible. I can discuss advising appointments over email, and I can have my textbooks shipped to my address overseas.” – Sydney Garner Lewis
  • “After the birth of our first child, I knew I needed to go back and finish what I started,” said McKenzie. “I was happy that I could pick up where I left off at EKU even though I lived in a different state.” – EKU Online student and mom
  • “I chose EKU because I am a unique student with unique needs, and EKU provides an avenue for students like me to succeed.” – EKU Online Psychology student Jason Tate
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