Chico Affordable Learning Solutions (CAL$)

What is ZCCM?

The Zero Cost Course Materials (ZCCM) designation identifies courses with zero cost for any learning materials (digital, printed text, or supplies).

The Higher Education Opportunity Act(opens in new window) (HEOA, 2008) requires that all course materials are made known to students at the time of registration “to ensure that students have access to affordable course materials by decreasing costs to students and enhancing transparency and disclosure with respect to the selection, purchase, sale, and use of course materials.”

Additionally, California Senate Bill 1359 requires CSU and California Community College campuses to: 

(1) Clearly highlight, by means that may include a symbol or logo in a conspicuous place on the online campus course schedule, the courses that exclusively use digital course materials that are free of charge to students and may have a low-cost option for print versions.

(2) Clearly communicate to students that the course materials used for the courses identified pursuant to paragraph are free of charge and therefore not required to be purchased.

At Chico State, faculty or departments are to report all course materials as well as any courses with zero cost to the Wildcat Bookstore, who help to make this information public.

For more information on the legislation: in new window)

How do Faculty Designate a Course as ZCCM?

Faculty should notify the Chico State Wildcat Store textbook office if their course does not require the purchase of course materials. The bookstore works with the Registrar’s office to add the Zero Cost Course Materials (ZCCM) designation to the course, in accordance with California law and to communicate it clearly to students. Faculty should notify the bookstore as soon as possible (it is best reported before students register for classes in October and April).

Notify the bookstore of a course’s ZCCM status by either:

  1. Using the Follett Discover link in Canvas. In Canvas select Account from the top of the global navigation window, and then select Follett Discover. In Follett Discover faculty can search for the author “ZCCM”, and adopt it as if it were a title. See provided instructions (Google Slide) on where to find and how to use Follett Discover.
  2. E-mailing the bookstore at 

What Qualifies as ZCCM?

Courses that only require the below items qualify as ZCCM.

  • Open Educational Resources (OERs) 
  • Readily available digital Library content 
  • Basic school supplies such as pens, pencils, paper, and binders 
  • Unspecified calculators and/or flash drives
  • Technology items readily available to check out from the library, such as calculators or specialized equipment 

Courses that require the purchase or rental of any of the below are disqualified from a ZCCM designation.

  • Textbooks, digital books, courseware
  • Course packs and reference materials
  • Goggles, lab coats, dissection kits, and other lab equipment
  • Art kits and other specific art supplies
  • Yoga mats or other exercise equipment
  • Specific graphing or scientific calculators
  • Specialized software or subscriptions
  • Passes to a performance, show, or event
  • Any other course materials with a cost