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As Students Head Back to Campus, BNED Sees Explosive Demand for BNC First Day® Complete, its Equitable Access Course Material Delivery Model

Sep 02, 2021
  • BNC First Day® Complete disrupts the traditional course material model by providing students all course materials needed for the term in one bundle before the first day of class.
  • The innovative course material delivery model has seen 7x year-over-year growth since 2020 and will be offered through 65 campus bookstores this fall up from 12 campus bookstores last year.
  • A recent First Day Complete survey found 70% of all students said the program had a positive impact on classroom success and 74% of students said they were better prepared for the academic term.

Barnes & Noble Education, Inc. ( NYSE: BNED ) , a leading solutions provider for the education industry, today announced the rapid expansion of its innovative course material delivery model BNC First Day® Complete with a significant increase in the number of campuses across the country using the program. In the 2021 fall term, First Day Complete will be offered through 65 campus bookstores up from just 12 campus bookstores in the fall of 2020, representing over 300,000 in total undergraduate enrollment, up from 43,000 students last fall - a 7x year-over-year increase. With this increase, the program will now be available across a broad spectrum of schools from small private colleges to large public universities and multi-campus community college systems.

“We are seeing tremendous demand for our First Day Complete equitable access program as schools have demonstrated the positive impact the solution has on improving student outcomes and reducing stress at the beginning of each academic term,” said Jonathan Shar, Executive Vice President, Retail and President of Barnes & Noble College. “First Day Complete eliminates barriers to course material access, allowing students to engage with the course content from day one and achieve greater academic success. Equally important, the program also supports our school partners’ mission of improving student academic achievement, persistence and retention.”

Disrupting the Traditional Course Material Delivery Model

First Day Complete is disrupting the traditional course material delivery model in collaboration with leading institutions from across the country. By delivering all course materials via one unified service, the program ensures students have access to all their learning materials across all of their courses before the first day of class, allowing them to engage with course content from day one to support their academic success.

Course material costs are bundled into tuition or applied as a course charge for one flat-rate each semester and through a concierge-style service, students can pick up all their physical materials either at the bookstore or have them shipped, while digital materials are accessible through an institution’s learning management system (LMS).

The program offers full academic freedom for faculty, allowing them to select the best course materials for the term from BNED’s expansive relationship with more than 6,000 publishers, creating a one-stop, simplified experience.

Positive Student Experiences

Data show that course materials are still an optional purchase for many students even though it’s been well documented that students who have their course materials before the start of class perform better academically. First Day Complete helps to remove barriers and provides the same fundamental level of access across an entire institution for all students.

Better Student Outcomes

In Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 terms, BNC surveyed students at colleges and universities nationwide to find out what they thought of the program – and the impact it’s had on their academic experience.

The survey results showed students felt they had better experiences and, ultimately, better academic results, confirming BNC’s equitable access program is making a positive impact on student success. Out of the more than 600 students who utilized the First Day Complete program:

  • 74% of students said they were better prepared for the academic term.
  • 70% of students said the program had a positive impact on their success.
  • 62% of students felt the program helped them achieve better grades.

Of note, historically underrepresented students saw even greater impact when utilizing the First Day Complete program:

  • 84% of students of color said they were better prepared for the academic term.
  • 78% of students of color said the program had a positive impact on their success.

Of those surveyed, 84% said they found it convenient to have their course materials bundled and delivered to them through this program and 85% stated the program saved them time.

Supporting Enrollment Growth

Some BNC partner institutions have started to report that they have seen enrollment growth, which they at least in part attribute to the ability to market the benefits of First Day Complete to prospective students.

Hear what students, faculty and administrators had to say about their experiences using First Day Complete and how it has made a positive impact at their institutions. Watch the video, here.
For more information about First Day Complete, visit,


Barnes & Noble Education, Inc. (NYSE: BNED) is a leading solutions provider for the education industry, driving affordability, access and achievement at hundreds of academic institutions nationwide and ensuring millions of students are equipped for success in the classroom and beyond. Through its family of brands, BNED offers campus retail services and academic solutions, a digital direct-to-student learning ecosystem, unparalleled best-in-class assortment of school apparel through a strategic alliance with Fanatics and Lids, wholesale capabilities and more. BNED is a company serving all who work to elevate their lives through education, supporting students, faculty and institutions as they make tomorrow a better, more inclusive and smarter world. For more information, visit

Carolyn J. Brown
Senior Vice President
Corporate Communications and Public Affairs
Barnes & Noble Education, Inc.
(908) 991-2967


Source: Barnes & Noble Education, Inc.
Categories: Press Releases
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