5 Ways to Get Free College Textbooks

Textbooks are expensive... everyone knows that! But not everyone knows that you can actually get textbooks for FREE! I learned about this later in my college career, and my hope is that you learn early on so that you can save money!

Instead of spending hundreds of dollars on textbooks this semester, you can save your $ and spend it on other fun things... like tuition 😩 

Here are 5 ways to get free college textbooks:

 1. School library

  • Many students buy their textbooks at the beginning of the semester without doing additional research. If you are a new student at the school, I would suggest calling the school's library to see if they have the textbooks you need for the semester. If you are a returning student, you likely have access to the online library catalogue. Look up to see if the library has an online or physical version of your textbook. You can typically check-out a physical book out for a couple months. You may not be able to use the library book for the whole semester so you will want to plan out how you will get the remainder of the chapters you need.
  • Some libraries have reserve copies of the textbook-meaning that you cannot take it out of the library, but you can use it while you are in the library. This may be a nice option, but you also will depend on other students not using the book as well.

2. Link+

  • If you cannot find the textbook you need at your school's library, Link+ is a resource that looks at other libraries to see if they have the textbook available. For example, if you go to San Diego State University (SDSU), you can get your textbook from the UCLA library. All you have to do is use Link+. UCLA will send the textbook to the SDSU library and you can pick it up there! You can also renew your book, just like a regular library book. 

3. ProQuest: Ebook Central

  • This is an online book catalogue service. All you have to do is type in your school information and you can access free Ebooks!

4. Public Library

  • Most people do not consider looking at the public library for textbooks, but they have them! In fact, I looked up a textbook I need this semester and found it at my local library! I get to save some money and make some use of my public library card!

5. Previous Students

  • It can be tricky to get textbooks from previous students because you mostly only know the students in your year; however, sometimes professors are helpful in connecting past students and current students in selling textbooks. You never know... a student could just give you a textbook for free!
There are other ways to get free or cheap textbooks, but this seemed like the best (least sketchy) way of getting these books! I hope this post was helpful. What are some other ways to get free or cheap textbooks that you have heard of? 

I know you are going to do great things!

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