The high costs of college textbooks has risen significantly since 2003 until today. Nowadays, these high textbook costs put a tremendous amount of stress on students, like yourself. Many even decide not to buy the books and risk their grades to save money. But why are college textbooks so expensive anyways, and where does all this money you spend on them go to? There are several nice alternatives you can choose, when buying an expensive textbook just seems too over the top for you. Here are 5 alternatives to escape spending more at college than you already have.
1. Student Market Place
First on our list is Foro. Foro is a way to buy and sell with other students on your campus. Now, Foro isn’t only useful for when you’re looking for books, but also for practically finding anything you’ll need. When you do find what you’re looking for, it’s likely that you will get it the same day. Foro is available on your iPhone and Android device, and has an average of 4.2 / 5 out of 286 votes on Google Play.
One other service is Samu, which also provides a service for Canadian students to sell and buy their books. A lot of books are priced between $15.00 and $50.00, but you can get ahold of a book for as low as $1.00. Via Samu you can also find a Tutor, although this is a paid service with hourly rates between $30.00 and $40.00.
2. Book Trading
Now, you might posses college textbooks that you’ll like to not sell, but trade. Guess what, there’s many services that provide just that. Let’s talk about BookMooch, which has an interesting methodology to trading college textbooks. Every time you send someone one of your books, you’ll receive a point. With one point you are able to get one book from anyone else on the platform. If you’re ambitious and want to make a difference in the world, you can donate your point(s) to charity. All of this is at your disposal, free of charge. The system of BookMooch works a lot like eBay, in a way that you can leave feedback when you receive a book. If you’re concerned about the wellbeing of your book and you want it to have a graceful life after you part, then BookMooch is a service that we’d recommend.
Of course, there’s no list of alternatives to books without E-books. This is considerably one of the most well-known alternatives and therefore worth mentioning. There’s one problem though, which is the availability of digital versions of the books that you’re meaning to use. When you do find them on for example Amazon, you’ll find that the prices are a bit less but still no less than $10.00 below a physical copy. You might not know it, but all the costs associated with print, like printing and distribution, are just a small margin on the total price. It’s mainly the publishers that are making sure that the prices are kept high.
Here’s where you’d want to look for alternatives, one of which is eCampus. They will allow you to either rent a physical copy, or purchase a digital version at a lower price. This is the case for a lot of books but not all. eCampus also allows you to sell and buy your books, like Samu.
4. Sharing study documents (Past exams, Summaries, Notes) – StuDocu
Many students are still not aware of this alternative, because using study document sharing websites nowadays is relatively new, emerging and fast growing. There have only been a couple websites created that provide documents to help pass exams. This includes past exams, mock exams, quizzes, summaries, lectures, lecture notes, past homework or anything along the line to help students study. These websites are a good and efficient alternative to use when financial problems come in the way and book costs are just a burden on top of the several other costs that come along with starting college.
It is also a way students can help each other passing classes and exams. It is almost like a way of teamwork, because students can even share their own documents for other students and so forth. If you are really interested in trying this, you can find out more about it here.
5. Purchasing older editions
Older editions of books are always worth looking for. If a new edition just released for one or more textbooks that you must obtain, make sure to compare both editions carefully. Many times the changes may be so small that you will not even need to pay anything for the newer version. Publishers have also done everything they can to increase their profits. For example combining a textbook with software, which leads to students needing to buy new editions instead of used copies which are way cheaper. Usually the material in the old edition textbooks is no different than the new edition. The only different factor between them would mainly be the page numbers, but when it comes to saving money, this should not really be an issue.