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Obtaining Books, Materials, Labs and Other Resources

Where is the list of required books and materials for each class?

In the Course Catalog details for each course there is a Resources and Materials section that lists the major items you need for each course (the lists are in the Course Catalog details so families can review and research the materials requirements before enrolling). Each list distinguishes between required and recommended items, and between items you must purchase and items supplied by the teacher. ISBN numbers are provided for all books and media, to help ensure you purchase the correct version of the correct item. Unless otherwise indicated, you must obtain the exact ISBN or part number specified.

Where can the books and materials be obtained?

You may usually purchase items from anywhere you prefer. For special-price, special-bundle, unique or obscure items, the Resources and Materials list will provide a recommended merchant.

TPS makes extensive use of digital courseware. These online resources include downloadable e-textbooks along with multimedia learning resources and activities. These are usually not available to individual students because they require licensed connection to a digital course on the textbook publisher’s server, and so the complete courseware is available only to schools. Use of licensed courseware provides students updated media-rich textbook resources at lower costs with no shipping fees or delays.

For courses that use digital licenses, there is an additional Resource Fee that pays for the required digital license that is provided at the start of the course. Initially the required item is listed in the Resources and Materials without the Resource Fee being charged to the family account, to save the family money in case of a drop. The Resource Fee is added to the total balance and invoiced when we commit the license payment to the resource publisher (therefore it is not refundable after it is added).

When may the books and materials be ordered?

TPS lists major texts and materials in the course catalog prior to opening enrollment in February so families may consider curriculum academic and cost factors when they choose courses to enroll. It is rare that a major text changes after enrollment starts in February, but it may happen due to unforeseeable changes in price, availability, edition or other factors outside our control. Therefore, we recommend that families order books and materials in a time window 4-6 weeks before the start of a course (6-8 weeks if overseas shipping is a factor).

To facilitate this ordering timeline, we post an “update in progress, do not purchase” message in the Resources and Materials details of each course until approximately eight weeks prior to the start of the course. We begin to support the ordering process only after we remove the posted message. For families who must order sooner, the posted list of major texts and materials may be considered current and accurate, subject to change only in unexpected circumstances beyond our control. However, we cannot provide other assistance for or make commitments in support of early purchases.

When you receive your books and materials, we recommend that you do not remove shrink wrap or other protective packaging, register any digital licenses, or start to use the materials until after class begins. TPS does not require or assign reading or work prior to the start of a course, and keeping your materials returnable maximizes your return and refund opportunity. If an unexpected change occurs prior to the start of a course, we will assume that any items purchased for the course are returnable with only small shipping charges at issue.

How does TPS select textbooks and curricula?

Please see How TPS Chooses Textbooks and Curricula.