Textbooks 101: Your College Buying Guide

With the money I spent on textbooks in college, I could now own a plethora of designer purses. Not that I need any more bags, but I didn’t really need any more books either. The textbook dilemma is never one easily solved.For the most part, you don’t know which books you’ll be using first before the first day of class and the requisite first day of class syllabus. I remember my freshman year I spent over $500 easily on books for my first semester.

That much money pains me now, much more than it did then. Back then I had the good ole M&D to rely on.

Now? Now I just have ramen. And rent due tomorrow.

So, you can’t buy your books before classes begin because there is the possibility you will never use them or just use them for one f*cking assignment. It’s so annoying.

Textbooks are essential to college and also one of the biggest college pains in my ass.

Here, I have outlined my no fail way to succeed at your first real college assignment: Buying Your Textbooks.

Textbook Tip #1

Don’t buy your books before the first day of class. There is just no need! I mean, really, you’re going to be drinking copious amounts of beer during your first few days anyways and having too much fun to even think about classes starting. Class, however, is an inevitable evil.

Textbook Tip #2

The next few tips take a bit of time and research so don’t get discouraged and just drop the dough down in the campus bookstore. First collect all your syllabi. Write down the books you will need. ISBN numbers are a gift from God. Write them down. Also make sure you have down the correct volume and edition. Nothing sucks more than buying the wrong book and having to search all semester long through the wrong edition for a particular page number or problem.

Textbook Tip #3

Find out what books you will need immediately. I was an English major so there was always one book I needed a few months before the others. If homework starts just as soon as classes begin, then buy those books in the bookstore so you don’t fall behind.

Textbook Tip #4

Take a look at all the books you will need for the rest of the semester at the bookstore, that way when you go to buy them online you will have a visual of what you need along with the ISBN and other pertinent information.

Textbook Tip #5

Buy the rest of your textbooks online. Thanks to an article in the New York Times, I discovered bookfinder.com, which compares its database of over 125 million different new and used books from different websites. Amazon.com is also another option. I’m picky about my books, and loved that fact that Amazon had descriptions of the quality and amount of writing and damage that the used books had incurred from its previous owners.

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