Industry Notes: Penguin Random Opens Education Site, Cengage Unlimited Provided by Two Campuses

In News by Porter Anderson

A new Penguin Random House site for educators markets curriculum-relevant titles from both the frontlist and backlist. And two programs are providing tens of thousands of Cengage’s new subscription to students.

Image – iStockphoto: Zephyr 18

By Porter Anderson, Editor-in-Chief | @Porter_Anderson
To ‘Facilitate Educator Engagement’
Penguin Random House on Tuesday (August 28) announced the introduction of a new online marketing platform which, according to the publisher’s messaging, is “uniquely designed to meet educators’ needs. ”

Highlighting frequently-adopted titles from PRH for many college courses, the site is intended to call professors’ attention to various books and resources that might be  appropriate for a wide range of courses. Penguin Random House’s media materials say it’s the first trade publisher to provide such an outreach, comprising as it does titles from both the frontlist and backlist.

In a prepared statement, the PRH vice president for education sales and strategy, Brent Gordon, is quoted, saying, “We are committed to making it easier for educators to discover Penguin Random House’s world-class content for the courses they teach. This site is one of many initiatives underway, designed to improve customer experiences and facilitate educator engagement with our titles, authors, and learning solutions across the Penguin Random House imprints.”

Currently in rotation on the site are attractively spotlighted titles including Chiniua Achebe’s African trilogy and Lauren Markham’s The Far Away Brothers: Two Young Migrants and the Making of an American Life.

You can see the new site, now online here. Faculty members, according to Gordon’s introductory letter on the site, have a suite of options in the new online space, including—and we’re quoting here:

  • “Review, customize, and download catalogs within specific disciplines
  • “Create, save, and share title “Wish Lists” with colleagues
  • “Access the latest news about Penguin Random House titles, authors, and events
  • “Browse upcoming academic conference dates and titles on display
  • “Request desk and examination copies in digital and print formats via our online request forms
  • “Register to receive one or more of Penguin Random House’s 14 subject e-newsletters and never-miss-new-titles announcements”

In sum, the material online is said to be supportive of more than 1,700 curriculum offerings in business and economics; humanities and social sciences; professional studies; and STEM. On arrival at the site, the visitor sees a pictorial breakdown of those four areas, along with a promotional call-out for “digital solutions,” newsletters, and “first-year reading.”

A part of the program is the provision to educators of desk and exam copies of various titles from PRH Academic Services.

Educators at US institutions, for example, can order exam copies on this schedule of fees:

  • Paperbacks (under US$20.00) are $3.00 each
  • Paperbacks (at or over $20.00) are 50 percent off
  • All hardcovers are 50 percent off the retail price

Desk copies can be had by educators free of charge when titles are adopted as required text at accredited US colleges and universities, with one copy available for every 20 copies ordered.

More on the Cengage Unlimited Rollout

Publishing Perspectives readers are familiar with this academic year’s launch of the first full-inventory all-you-can-use subscription model adopted for the first time by Cengage Learning.

From two universities, there’s word Tuesday (August 28) that tens of thousands of Cengage Unlimited subscriptions are being given to students by their campus administrations.

The Tampa-based Ultimate Medical Academy–an accredited nonprofit healthcare teaching program founded in 1994 and now with 15,000 students using its online courses–reports that its students will have access to the entire subscription offering, and the school is also using Cengage for “institutional services, including enhancing courses with new assessment items and interactive features to enrich the learner experience.”

And in Lynchberg, Virginia, Liberty University–formerly Liberty Baptist College–reports that it’s “adding Cengage Unlimited subscriptions to its affordable course materials program, which saves Liberty students $975 annually on course materials. … Liberty University’s affordability initiative provides all digital books and instructional materials free of charge to undergraduate students enrolled in online undergraduate courses.”

More from Publishing Perspectives in our Industry Notes series is here.

About the Author

Porter Anderson

Facebook Twitter

Porter Anderson has been named International Trade Press Journalist of the Year in London Book Fair's International Excellence Awards. He is Editor-in-Chief of Publishing Perspectives. He formerly was Associate Editor for The FutureBook at London's The Bookseller. Anderson was for more than a decade a senior producer and anchor with, CNN International, and CNN USA. As an arts critic (Fellow, National Critics Institute), he was with The Village Voice, the Dallas Times Herald, and the Tampa Tribune, now the Tampa Bay Times. He co-founded The Hot Sheet, a newsletter for authors, which now is owned and operated by Jane Friedman.