As every current and former college student knows, college is expensive. Not only does college tuition continue to pile up, but things like room and board, groceries, transportation, and school supplies add to the debt that students struggle with, too.
One thing that college students can do to help save money is searching for free textbooks online! Some websites offer textbooks for cheaper than usual or even free. Search these 10 websites for your textbooks next semester before dropping the cash.
Yes, it may be surprising, but Google has some hidden gems! Simply click on the search bar and type filetype:pdf followed by the name of the textbook you are searching for in quotation marks to search the web for a free PDF copy of your textbook. If you have no luck, try the name of the author in quotation marks as well as other file types such as PowerPoints and Microsoft Word documents.
2. Open Culture
Open Culture is a website that provides free cultural and educational media. Not only do they have a tab on their website to access and find free textbooks online, but they also provide an eBook option as well with downloads available in almost all formats.
3. Textbook Revolution
This student-run website organizes free textbooks online in categories including subject, course, level, license, and topics. Their goal is to increase the use and access to free educational materials for both students and professors. Books are provided as PDF files, eBooks, and even online websites.
4. Flat World Knowledge
Flat World Knowledge offers college and university textbooks free of charge on their website to both educators and students. Their search engine tool allows you to search for your university, professor, course, or textbook to give you multiple ways to find what you are looking for.
5. Online Mathematics Textbooks
Those inch-thick math textbooks are not only heavy, but expensive, too. A group of professors from the Georgia Institute of Technology have collected and shared a variety of mathematics textbooks ranging from basic math to calculus, and students can access the texts free of charge here.
6. Free Digital Textbook Initiative
The California Learning Resource Network has developed and started the Free Digital Textbook Initiative, helping both high school and college students access free course materials and textbooks online. With a search engine including areas like subject matter, education level, and material type, the website makes it easy to search for what you are looking for.
For absolutely no charge, users of ManyBooks can search and sift through over 50,000 eBooks online. Students can search for their textbooks by title, author, genre, and even publication dates for a better chance at finding what they need.
Students can access a number of free textbooks online at Bookboon. The website requires you to share your email address in order for you to download what you find, but will email you weekly updates including what new books have been added to the website for you to check out!
9. Open Textbook Library
Open Textbook Library offers students access to free, openly-licensed textbooks. They define open textbooks as textbooks that have been published, funded, and licensed to be used freely and openly, meaning that the textbooks can be distributed to students free of charge!
OpenStax is a website similar to Open Textbook Library. The website gives students access to textbooks and learning materials that they need to succeed in their educational careers. For little to no cost, students can access a variety of textbooks online and save money doing so.