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    UniversalQuilt's Avatar
    UniversalQuilt Posts: 1, Reputation: 1
    New Member
     
    #1

    Aug 19, 2017, 04:02 PM
    When should you get your college textbooks?
    Imaginary Bobby hasn't gotten his because he wants to wait until he receives his syllabuses and Imaginary Pete already ordered his and got one and waiting for the others.
    joypulv's Avatar
    joypulv Posts: 21,593, Reputation: 2941
    current pert
     
    #2

    Aug 19, 2017, 04:30 PM
    My experience was always this: You go to the college bookstore and textbooks are shelved by course name/professor. There are stacks of used ones and stacks of new ones. You get there early to buy used ones. The page numbers might not agree with the newer text, and a problem set or two might be different, but you deal with it to save money. The text book companies make small changes just to charge for new books. Ripoff
    teacherjenn4's Avatar
    teacherjenn4 Posts: 3,998, Reputation: 468
    Education Expert
     
    #3

    Aug 19, 2017, 09:10 PM
    Today's students often rent textbooks if they are needed. Honestly, I'd email the professor beforehand to see if the textbook is necessary. Then, I'd rent it. Often, a new edition comes out, and then a purchased textbook won't be bought back.
    Fr_Chuck's Avatar
    Fr_Chuck Posts: 81,292, Reputation: 7691
    Expert
     
    #4

    Aug 20, 2017, 03:50 PM
    Lots are online for online rental, no real books in hand.

    You should have them first day of class, and the school will provide you a book list
    dontknownuthin's Avatar
    dontknownuthin Posts: 2,910, Reputation: 751
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    #5

    Aug 20, 2017, 07:15 PM
    I recommend buying them all at the time of registration but make sure they can be returned if they will not be used. I used to ask my professors straight out whether the books are needed and if there were any that students could reasonably do without or share. I was told at least three times I can recall that we would, for example, only use one chapter of a book, or that we would not use a book but that the professor was required to specify it by the university. In the case of the one we were only using for one chapter, I went to the library and read it there, in advance of the chapter being assigned so I could be sure it was available. I took copious notes and copied some sections. In a few instances I went in with another student and shared a book if it was only going to be lightly relied on. I also once returned a book after the professor indicated it wouldn't be used, but made sure to leave it shrink wrapped as when I bought it and kept the receipt so I could return it for full price.

    I think it's a mistake to wait though because they can go out of stock, and then to save a hundred bucks or whatever, you don't have what you need for classes costing thousands.

    I had one very lean semester too when I used almost exclusively books from the library. If a school has all the books available in the library this can be a good cost saving measure, but is a terrible plan if you procrastinate because they may already be in use. Many colleges put one copy of each textbook on the shelves, and come finals, you can be sure they won't be available. It worked for me because I tended to work ahead and was generally a good student and didn't wait - I did work as soon as it was assigned instead of right before it was due, and at times when I relied on the library, I did reading well in advance. It all depends on how responsible you are, and whether you are willing to go to extra effort to make it work. I saved about four hundred bucks at the time, and it was worth it to me.

    I recommend buying them all at the time of registration but make sure they can be returned if they will not be used. I used to ask my professors straight out whether the books are needed and if there were any that students could reasonably do without or share. I was told at least three times I can recall that we would, for example, only use one chapter of a book, or that we would not use a book but that the professor was required to specify it by the university. In the case of the one we were only using for one chapter, I went to the library and read it there, in advance of the chapter being assigned so I could be sure it was available. I took copious notes and copied some sections. In a few instances I went in with another student and shared a book if it was only going to be lightly relied on. I also once returned a book after the professor indicated it wouldn't be used, but made sure to leave it shrink wrapped as when I bought it and kept the receipt so I could return it for full price.

    I think it's a mistake to wait though because they can go out of stock, and then to save a hundred bucks or whatever, you don't have what you need for classes costing thousands.

    I had one very lean semester too when I used almost exclusively books from the library. If a school has all the books available in the library this can be a good cost saving measure, but is a terrible plan if you procrastinate because they may already be in use. Many colleges put one copy of each textbook on the shelves, and come finals, you can be sure they won't be available. It worked for me because I tended to work ahead and was generally a good student and didn't wait - I did work as soon as it was assigned instead of right before it was due, and at times when I relied on the library, I did reading well in advance. It all depends on how responsible you are, and whether you are willing to go to extra effort to make it work. I saved about four hundred bucks at the time, and it was worth it to me.

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