By Katie Wall
My name is Katie Wall and I graduated from college without ever checking out a book. That’s right – in May of 2009 I graduated from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, a school consistently ranked as one of the best public universities in the country, and never checked out a single book.
I’m not saying that UNC-Chapel Hill wasn’t a challenging school – quite the opposite, actually, but for all of the time I spent reading and studying, I never once needed to check out a book from the library.
When it came to writing research papers I was able to find everything I needed online. Of course you have to be smart about it – I absolutely do not condone using sites like Wikipedia as sources (come on, we *all* know better than that!); but because of various internet platforms, there were multitudes of valuable resources at my finger tips that once required digging through books and microfiches.
The UNC library system had an incredible online database that housed an endless supply of books and scholarly journals, and I suspect that most universities are moving toward making more of their resources available online.
While I know that I am by no means the norm – my college roommate consistently came home with mountains of books – I still think there is value in the fact that the way students read and research is no longer dependent on books in the traditional form.
What do you think? Do you think the use of traditional books is fleeting? Do you think that online platforms or things like the Kindle or iPad will become a staple in the collegiate reading experience?
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