I hate buying textbooks for  college.  It is absolutely ridiculous the amount of money they charge for textbooks and, in my experience, we barely even open them.  Over the years I have gotten to the point where I don’t buy the book until at least a few weeks in to class because I hate buying them ahead of time and then not needing them.   I once bought a book ($147 used) and then on the first day of class the professor said, “If you have not yet purchased the book, don’t worry about it. We will barely use them anyway. If you have purchased the book, well it won’t make you any stupider.”  I groaned.  $147 for something I’m not going to need?  I tried to return it but was only able to return it for $75 since it was used.  I suppose it didn’t matter that it was used when I bought it for $147.   I was pretty damn mad.  I also almost never buy the textbooks for online classes.  Why not?  Google!  That’s why not.  I usually read the professor’s synopsis or view their PowerPoint then I just Google the topic and study the best I can.  The quizzes and tests are all online too so I’ll Google the question, try to find the answer, and the submit.  I’ve earned a lot of “A” grades that way, and YES, I still feel like I’ve learned a lot and I’ve saved money that us college students so desperately need. 

Enter…Oceanography.  I needed a science class to graduate this Spring and my advisor told me it would be the easiest of the science classes that were available for me to choose from.  He lied.  Oceanography is NOT easy!  Nor is it a class I can do without buying a book.  Damn it!  Sort of.  You see, the book “package” we are supposed to buy for this course is approximately $177 which I hate paying for a book I will use for 3 months so I didn’t buy it.  I’ve learned a lot from Google and classmates and the professor’s online presentations and I’ve Googled my way through the quizzes and all was well…UNTIL…I tried to open the first Lab assignment online.  There are no questions!  It’s only answers.  It’s a question like this…

1)  a – Heat

     b – Carbon

     c – Heat and Carbon

What?!?  How do I know without the questions?  Damn it! (again)!  I looked through the course instructions and of  course it said I had to complete the labs in the manual and then copy the answers in to the online assignment and post.  Since the questions are in the workbook, they don’t need to be online, right?  Damn it! (again!)  I have to buy the stupid book!  Lucky for me though I know to check Amazon for used books and lo and behold…there was a used manual!  Hurrah for me because I only want the manual, I don’t want the whole book. That’s insane.  The guy selling the book said the manual is “heavily used” with a lot of notes, diagrams, and the correct answers are circled since he used it as a study guide.  That’s fantastic!  I’ll do the first lab using his circled answers and see if he’s really correct, if he is that saves me boatloads of time and I can focus on the classes I really need to retain knowledge from in order to  be successful.  Oceanography, while interesting, isn’t at the top of my OMG…I MUST LEARN THIS list.

Oh? And the best part.  The manual is only $27.  Eat dirt stupid overpriced college bookstore!


8 thoughts on “Textbooks

  1. The only book that I’ve been able to look at for my courses next semester is for my Intro to Education, and it’s over $140 used. I don’t want to know what my science books will cost. The history ones though I’ll get over, because I’ll probably end up keeping them anyway and get their full money value out of them. It’s ridiculous though the pricing on the books, as if tuition wasn’t expensive enough.

    • Don’t ever buy a book without first checking half.com and amazon.com. You can sometimes find them super cheap on there. What txtbook do you need for Intro to Ed? I am taking that course this semester and if you’re lucky enough to need the same book I’ll ship it to you for way less than $140.

      • The thing though is that if I use my scholarship money like my mom wants me to do, I have to go through the school’s online bookstore. ): As for Intro to Ed, I can’t remember and the bookstore is currently down right now so I can’t even log in. I’ll check though towards the end of this semester to see if they have my book list up. All I know is I hope I like Intro to Ed and want to continue history education if the books are this expensive. *sigh*

  2. Have you thought about purchasing used books? It can make the prices drop quite a bit. I agree, college texts are extortionate and over priced!

    • Yes, if I have to buy textbooks I try to buy them used. That’s how I bought the one book I had to return when we were told we wouldn’t need them. It’s also how I found my Oceanography book (Amazon – Used book). I’m still shocked I was able to find it since it’s a new edition book. I really dislike when they change editions and then there are no used books. Oh…the woes of a college student. 😦

      • The worst is when you need to have the new edition of the textbook and the old one is basically the same but you are not allowed to use it! At Campus Universe we are currently investigating sources for cheaper textbooks for students because we feel the current prices are not affordable. Also enjoy college it’s the best years 🙂

      • I tried the digital textbooks one semester. I thought it would be cheaper to download it to my laptop but it wasn’t. It was still over $150 and it wasn’t accessible after the semester. I tried the textbook rental option but it was still the same price and I had to send it back. It really is out of control. I will buy the former editions if I can find them. The chapters are sometimes in a different order or the page numbers are different but I haven’t had any serious problems. I still earn A’s. This is my 2nd time through college. I decided I wish I had stuck with my original major so I turned around went back. 🙂

      • I know we are going to explore all the options and see which is cheapest. We will be doing a poll with students to also get their thoughts! Good for your for going back! If you have any other issues with your college or campus or anything you would like to see improved please let us know! We will be doing polls and surveys with students to get their insights to help improve their college experiences.

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