Save Hundreds of Dollars with Z-Degree Courses

Anoka-Ramsey Community College offers an Associate of Arts Z-Degree, a zero textbook cost degree. Any student can earn an Associate of Arts (AA) degree without buying any textbooks. Zero textbook cost options are an efficient way to reduce education expenses and complement in-class learning.

Anoka-Ramsey is pioneering the use of openly-licensed, high-quality electronic textbooks, streaming videos, course modules and other high-quality electronic materials known as open educational resources or OER. Z-Degree courses may use these free OER or other free resources so students can complete an entire two-year associate's degree without buying textbooks.

Cash-strapped students are often on the lookout for affordable alternatives to expensive textbooks. Through this innovative program, students can save hundreds of dollars on the textbooks they need.

Know Before You Go

Because some textbook-free classes may use electronic materials rather than printed textbooks, students may need regular and reliable Internet access in order to complete course work.

Some Z-Degree courses may require a course fee for class supplies such as a notebook, clay, yoga mat or tools.

  • Any student may seek a Z-Degree. There is no special application process. Please see Academic Advising for more information.

  • Students simply register for Z-Degree classes as desired/available.

    Review list of available Z-Degree courses in e-services. When searching for courses select "Expand/Collapse for Advanced Search" near the bottom of the page and "No cost for textbooks" from the Textbook Costs field.

  • Yes. Z-Degree classes are regular classes that do not require students to purchase a textbook.

    • Materials can be viewed on the web at no cost.
    • Materials may be downloaded to a phone or other personal device.
    • Materials can be printed at our on-campus printshop, Central Services. Ask the instructor about their particular class. Please note that printing materials will be an additional cost to the student. The average cost of printing course materials is $15.
    • Materials can also be accessed through Read Speaker for students who prefer text-to-speech learning options.
    • Materials may also be accessed in our Cambridge or Coon Rapids Campus Libraries for reserve print copies.
  • Some Z-Degree courses may require a small (less than $40) materials fee for class supplies such as a notebook, clay, yoga mat or tools.

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