UofM and Barnes & Noble Education to Launch Tigers SmartStart Program to Enhance Student Success

Oct. 10, 2022 — The University of Memphis, in partnership with Barnes & Noble College (BNC) and its First Day® Complete Program, is launching Tigers SmartStart to help increase student access and affordability to all required textbooks, lab manuals, access codes, digital materials and electronic books. 

Tigers SmartStart will allow undergraduate students to receive these required course materials at a rate of $24 per credit hour, regardless of how much each item costs to purchase separately. On average, the program will save students 30%-55% on the cost of course materials during their undergraduate career.

Beginning Oct. 10, Barnes & Noble College, which operates campus bookstores and associated school-branded e-commerce sites for Barnes & Noble Education, Inc., will begin to manage all course materials, retail merchandise and online bookstore services for the UofM. Tigers SmartStart will be implemented for the nearly 22,000 UofM students for Spring 2023.

“Access and affordability for students are among our core principles at the University of Memphis, and this initiative aligns perfectly with those efforts,” said UofM Interim Provost Abby Parrill-Baker. “We are excited to partner with Barnes & Noble, and we appreciate their commitment to providing pathways for student success on our campus and across the country.”

By delivering all course materials via one highly convenient concierge service, Tigers SmartStart ensures students have access to all their required course materials on or before the first day of class, allowing them to engage with course content from day one, making them better prepared and facilitating their academic success. The program offers academic freedom for faculty by allowing them to select the best course materials for their curriculum and leverage BNC’s deep relationships with more than 6,000 publishers, creating a one-stop, simplified experience.

“We are excited about our partnership with the UofM as we implement Tigers SmartStart to enhance student outcomes,” said Jonathan Shar, president of Barnes & Noble College. “Tigers SmartStart ensures students are prepared to begin learning on day one, driving greater student success while also offering a more affordable and convenient way for students to obtain their course materials. We support the UofM’s mission of providing the highest quality education, and through this partnership, we will provide a wide range of academic solutions and a seamless retail experience to help to drive success for UofM’s students in the classroom and beyond. We look forward to working with the UofM and our other partner schools to continue delivering solutions that empower academic success for all students.”

With Tigers SmartStart, instead of purchasing course materials a la carte, the cost is included in each student’s account when tuition is charged. In December 2022, students will receive an email from the UofM bookstore prompting them to select their preferred delivery method for their fall semester materials. The bookstore will prepare materials for each student and notify them when materials are available for in-store pickup or have shipped. Digital materials will be automatically delivered to students.

With BNC as its new bookstore operator, the UofM will also offer an expanded assortment of TOM IV-branded apparel, gifts, school supplies and more. Through its strategic alliance with Fanatics and Lids, BNC will deliver an unparalleled best-in-class assortment of apparel and an exceptional retail experience to the UofM community. Merchandise will be available in-store, online through the website or using the mobile app, delivered with a dynamic and personalized experience for students, alumni and fans.