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The Struggle Is Real: Do I Really Need to Buy This Textbook?

Submitted by Alexandria Barnes on August 31, 2016 – 1:01 pmNo Comment

Each semester, I face the same question: which classes can I get away with not buying a textbook for? Every college student knows how expensive textbooks can be. It’s not rare for us to drop $300 on books for just one class. And the sad reality is, you might not even need to use the book!

It seems as though professors are always telling us, “The textbook is required” or “You can’t pass my class without buying the book.” Hearing that, of course, you go and buy the book for the class thinking that you can’t live without it. Then next thing you know, you’ve just shorted yourself several hundred dollars.

A few weeks in, you start to realize the class was easier than you thought. Most of the answers to your homework and online tests can be found on Quizlet, and the textbooks that were a must-have for you to pass the course have been sitting on your desk since mid-August. Unfortunately, the deadline to get a full refund on those books has passed, and if you try to sell them back at the bookstore, the most you’ll probably make off of them is a few bucks.

Another downside is that you never know what class you will need a book for and what class you won’t. If you wait too long to buy the book for a class, you can get behind on work or miss assignments. And if you buy your books from the bookstore, there is a chance they may not have the book you need after classes begin.

Basically, buying textbooks in college is a lose-lose situation. You’re either going to pay way too much money for a book you might not even use or possibly miss assignments trying to wait and see if you need to buy the book. Hopefully, you got lucky this semester and are using the textbooks you spent money on.

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