How to Get Cheaper Science Textbooks

I remember spending over $500 in one semester for my biology books. You will find that many science or health majors spend upwards of a $1,000 or more per year because they have to buy model and lab kits in addition to their textbooks. However, there are ways to cut the costs of buying textbooks.

As we are nearing the close of another college semester or quarter, students are selecting the next courses in their degree program. With selecting a course schedule, students must consider the costs of their textbooks. For degree programs such as health and science fields, the costs of textbooks are even more of a concern. I remember spending over $500 in one semester for my biology books. You will find that many science or health majors spend upwards to a $1,000 or more per year because they have to buy model and lab kits in addition to their textbooks. However, there are ways to cut the costs of buying textbooks at a minimum with the following tips.

Ask your professor if you will use the textbook

I had experiences with professors who only used PowerPoint presentations or gave notes to the students. So, please check with your professor before purchasing your textbooks.

Ask your professor if you can use an earlier edition

Usually, the required books for your courses will be the most recent editions. Purchase the earlier editions to save money but check with your professor first.

Search for your textbooks at your local library or library on campus

Many students are unaware that their local or on campus library may have textbooks. I used this option during graduate school and only had to buy one textbook. So, I encourage you to seek out your local library, but do it early! Also, if you don’t find your textbook at your college library, ask about partnerships among college libraries in your state. You can have a textbook sent to your college library from another school.

Check with friends who may have already taken the class

Ask your friends and fellow classmates in your dorm or apartment if they have textbooks for your upcoming classes. You can save money by swapping books or paying a reduced price.

Buy used textbooks when possible

If you have to buy your textbooks, be sure to buy used textbooks to save you even more money. Consider and compare the costs of buying textbooks online and renting textbooks. Also check into the international edition, these editions tend to be cheaper than used textbooks sold in the United States. For more resources, be sure to check,, or

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About Ashley Hill

Ashley Hill

Ashley Hill is a Scholarship Search Strategist, author, and professional speaker who formerly worked at College Prep Ready. She assists families who don't qualify for financial aid and feel overwhelmed with paying for college in winning merit scholarships (not based on income level) and gain peace of mind!


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