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How Much Does the Average Student Spend on College Textbooks?

by Mohamed Ali
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It’s a good idea to research the price of college textbooks as you get ready for college because they can cost far more than you may anticipate. You already shell out a sizable sum on college. Before reading the following phrase, buckle up! 

According to the College Board, students should budget at least $1,200 for course materials and college textbooks in 2017–2018 and between $1,240 and $1,440 for the 2018–2019 school year. In the overall scope of tuition and fees, this may not seem like a significant sum, but it’s something you should plan for and be aware of.

While you might be tempted to forego buying a book for a particular class in an effort to save money, keep in mind that, according to a study by US PIRG, 94% of students who lacked the required college textbook for a subject felt that it had a negative impact on their academic development. In light of this, it’s crucial to think about the investment you are making in your education, even though it may be tempting to skip a book or believe you can Google your way through the semester. Really, do you want to cut corners here? Most likely not.

Despite the high cost of college textbooks, there are a few things you can do to cut costs on this purchase. Below are a few ideas to lessen the impact of the high price of textbooks.

Consider open-access or open-resource materials

Teaching, learning, and research materials in any medium that is “in the public domain or have been distributed under an open license that provides no-cost access, use, adaption, and redistribution by others with no or few limitations” are referred to as open educational resources (OER). These kinds of cost-free resources can help you save hundreds of dollars. These materials can be accessed and used by students for the duration of the program since they often do not “expire” once the student has finished the course.

Consider low-cost or free books when available

It is worthwhile to conduct some research to determine whether your course materials are offered for free or at a discounted price. Companies like OpenStax advertise that they “produce high-quality, publicly licensed college textbooks that are completely free online and reasonably priced in print.” Additionally, Project Gutenberg may have access to some classic books and other compulsory course readings.

In addition to these, SolutionInn is offering free college textbooks to students at a much larger scale. They have more than two thousand dozen titles and it is very unlikely that your desired title will be a miss. The college textbooks are not only free, but the delivery is also free. 

Consider digital versions of college textbooks

Take digital college textbooks as one example. Some of the necessary textbooks are far less expensive in their digital form than in their paper form. Find out if it applies to your list of needed books by doing some research. When it comes to textbooks and other obligatory readings, it could be entirely worthwhile.

Consider renting your textbooks

Have you ever considered renting books? For many kids, this is a fantastic alternative. On websites like BookByte, CampusBookRentals, and eCampus, you may frequently rent textbooks for a semester or longer. Renting college textbooks can be far less expensive than buying them outright. If you’re fortunate enough to locate a copy in your neighborhood or public library, you can avoid paying for a rental.

Consider buying your college textbooks used

Used textbooks are often available online at a big discount compared to new ones. Purchase secondhand books from retailers like Amazon or eBay. If you attempt to buy early, you can even often find a respectable abundance of used textbooks at campus bookstores. Depending on the course and subject, it pays to take into account prior versions of particular textbooks.

Consider local booksellers

Some local bookshops work with nearby schools and universities to develop partnerships, and they may provide discounts to college students. Even though these discounts might not be the biggest you will ever see, if you use them and patronize a nearby small company, you will still save money!

Consider scholarships for textbooks and supplies

Many scholarships have strict requirements. Take the time to look for and consider textbook scholarships if you need aid paying for your college textbooks. Depending on the scholarship organization, you could be fortunate enough to have the lab fees and supplies covered by the award. Consider scholarships early and prepare to spend some time doing your research. As you complete the research, it can be worth more than you initially believe.

Consider selling your old textbooks

You may utilize the money you earn from selling your used college textbooks from prior semesters to pay for the new ones you need to buy. Even if you are unable to recoup the entire cost of the book, some compensation is preferable to none at all. Additionally, you could receive a little bit more money if you sell it for a college shop credit than if you sold it to them for cash.

Consider borrowing or sharing with a peer

If you know someone who has previously taken the course, ask them if they would be willing to let you borrow their copies of the needed texts for the semester. If you are taking the course with a friend, you might possibly divide the cost of the book. You may benefit from doing this for a few semesters.

The 2008 Higher Education Act Reauthorization mandates that college textbook publishers provide academics early access to textbook prices and that they deliver resources to students independently from the formerly more costly course bundle. A platform: SolutionInn is providing free college textbooks to all students. Nevertheless, the price of books and materials is somewhat high. It’s crucial to arm oneself with information, therefore it’s beneficial to be aware of the cost of your college textbooks and other resources upfront. You may be able to save quite a bit of money by taking some of the aforementioned recommendations into account on an otherwise significant college expenditure that is occasionally under or overestimated.

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