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Thursday, February 5, 2009

What can we do about textbook prices?

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As you may have noticed, textbook prices are outrageous! I spend around $500 on books every semester, that's about average for all students. My most expensive book was more than $160. And I didn't use it once! The professor said, "I know its expesive but you'll need it". And guess what . . . I DIDN'T NEED IT! What a waste of money.

If you are pissed at the prices you're paying for books there are some things you can do to help:
  1. Buy used books when you can
  2. Sell your books, but make sure you won't need them in the future
  3. Share with a friend, only if you can depend on them
  4. Buy online copies if available

There is a group in the USA that are trying to fight against high textbook prices. They say that the prices are so high because, #1 the want to make as much money as they can, and there are no competitors to force price reductions. But another cause of this problem lies with the faculty, because ultimately it is the professor that picks the required book. And of course the pick the newest, most expensive edition, that often don't have used copies available to buy.

So this group started the Make Textbooks Affordable campaign. They have researched the textbook market and are trying to get the prices to go down. I personally think that the government should regulate these prices. If the government wants a future of educated citizens they need to make it more affordable, and textbooks are just too costly. They are scamming students!!!

Anyways, you can check out their website to learn more about their cause. I know that this is just in the US but may encourage the same efforts in Canada. Also you can find other resources to reduce your textbook costs.

The video below is about this issue.

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  1. I went to college, and text books were ridiculous then. I think College is great, but there is a lot to it that is a rip off! Sharing and networking is a great idea!

  2. I never ever bought new books while in school - I bought all my books used on Amazon. I remember one semester when a finance book would have cost me over $200 new, about $150 in the college "used" bookstore, and cost me only $20 on Amazon.

  3. Yeah textbook costs are outrageous! And it is pretty dissapointing to only receive half of your money back at the end of the semester for selling back your books. It sure is expensive, but some say education is priceless. Anyways, Great tips!


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