Textbooks are something that you will need in college. Nonetheless, it is not always easy to get them, as the prices are rising quickly. For example, an economics textbook could cost up to $300. Spending large sums of money on books is not unusual for students. Costs vary, based on the university you attend.
However, it appears that most students managed to find a way out. Since the prices became ridiculous, students had to find some alternatives. Let’s try to take a look at this situation and see what some book tips that you can use if you are in college are.
Professors are to blame | The fact that students spend a lot of time on textbooks is also determined by professors. When professors assign lists of books, they don’t think about the costs. In most cases, there are cheaper alternatives, but professors don’t really think about their students when they choose the books. Instead, they prefer to assign the textbooks they enjoy more when it comes to teaching.
The reasons why textbooks are so expensive | The cost of books becomes higher and higher every day. However, there are some reasons for this. First of all, publishers tend to take a significant percentage of the total profit. There are few textbook publishers, so there is no competition. This means that companies are allowed to charge high prices. Since textbooks are required by colleges, publishers know that students are forced to buy them.
Additionally, it costs money to produce a textbook. After the book is written, the company needs to take care of the layout, design, and printing. You should also know that authors are paid by the word. As a consequence of that, most of them make their books longer than they should, and the prices become higher as well. Since the book has many words, more paper and ink will be needed in order to print it.
Textbooks also need to be updated. In many cases, information can become outdated, which means that authors have to publish a new version that is up to date. Not to mention that the more recent version is more expensive as well.
Alternatives | We have discussed with numerous students, and most of them managed to find better options when it comes to textbooks. As the average prices for books have risen to 82% in the past ten years, it is normal that college students started looking for alternatives.
Used books | Buying new books is the most expensive option, but costs can be reduced when students opt for used textbooks. There are numerous sites that tell used textbooks, and the prices are lower than the original ones.
Buying used books is a great alternative. However, students have to make sure that the book is in a decent condition. You don’t want to purchase a textbook that can’t be used. Using online search tools can be very helpful when you are looking for a specific textbook. Just type in the title and the author, and you should find numerous offers. You can take a look at different sites and compare the prices until you find a textbook that matches your needs.
Renting a book | College stores have also noticed the price rise for textbooks. As a consequence of that, most stores decided to rent books as well. Renting a textbook means that a student will be able to access the book for the entire semester, but it must be returned after the finals are over. Renting a book is a lot cheaper than buying a new one, so many students like this alternative.
Buying the e-book | By buying textbooks in digital form, you will end up saving some money as they are less expensive than the paper form. There are plenty of websites such as Amazon who offer the e-book version of textbooks as well.
Nonetheless, some people find it more difficult to study from an e-book, although you could print it out. Additionally, there is no way of selling the e-book at the end of the semester, so you won’t get back a part of your money.
Downloading books for free | This method might not be entirely legal, but it is entirely free. There are many students who have decided to scan their textbooks and put them online for free. This means that other students are able to download them and use them. With a simple online search, you should be able to find some online databases that contain textbooks posted by students from all around the world.
This is means that you can get your textbook on your tablet or laptop for free. If you want to own a physical copy of the textbook, you can print. Although this might cost you some money, it remains a lot cheaper than buying a textbook.