Download College Textbooks Online
Convenient, Cheap and Sometimes Free!
If you can't find your textbook as a digital download, think about renting your textbook instead.
Renting a textbook is the second cheapest way to get the book you need. Sometimes it is THE cheapest.
The average student spends $1,200 bucks a year on books. Just books.
And, that's if you're average!
According to the U.S. government accounting office, college textbook prices have increased at twice the rate of inflation over the last two decades. Prices tripled from December 1986 to December 2004. OUCH!
Very good reasons to download college textbooks online.
Below are my favorite resources for finding cheap or free college textbooks to rent or download online...
This site has everything we look for in a textbook rental -- cheaper than dirt, free shipping both ways, upstanding customer service and a huge database of books to choose from.
Apple iPad Textbooks
Culmination of Steve Jobs dream. Cheap, electronic textbooks with incredible interactive features, like movies, photo galleries, interlinks -- all accessible with the tap of a finger. College textbooks by Pearson, McGraw Hill and other top publishers.
BookBoon produces PDF textbooks that are offered to students and profs for ZERO money. Yes, FREE textbooks. They contain small, non-annoying ads that help pay for the cost of production. There are hundreds (if not thousands) of textbook choices, as well as travel guides and business books. All free downloads. Boon indeed. Books indeed. Go see what the future looks like.
Bookshare is a free software and text service to U.S. students with disabilities. Qualifying disabilities are visual impairments which make it impossible or difficult to read, such as blindness or low vision, a physical disability which affects one's ability to read print, a learning or reading disability. Autism, ADHD or ESL do not qualify without accompanied visual or physical impairments. A professional certification of disability is required to join. Bookshare includes magazines, and bestsellers from the New York Times list as well as Newberry award winners and other recently published works.
Buy your book, download CafeScribe's free application (PC or Mac) and then the book is downloaded in PDF file format. You can take notes, highlight and copy, share notes with other students and your professor, or print up to 30% of the text. They have a large selection of texts. By Follett. You can read the book online right away. Instant delivery!
Course Smart has two options -- you can purchase an etext to read online, or you can download the etext and keep it on your own hard drive. If you choose to use the online version of the etext there is no limit to the number of computers or devices used to access the material. If you choose to download the etext to your own hard drive there is a license limit of one. The etext will disappear after your subscription ends and most subscriptions last one year. Prices are comparable to textbook rentals. Some etexts are much, much cheaper than their print counterparts (even at textbook rental prices) so it pays to make a quick visit to Course Smart before making a purchasing decision.
Flat World Knowledge
Flat World Knowledge offers students, educators and institutions the option to download college textbooks online, printed soft cover or download-to-print PDF versions of textbooks. All the textbook content is readable in Kindle or Nook. It can also be inserted easily into Moodle or Blackboard. If that's not amazing enough they also openly license the content so that instructors and curriculum developers can alter the content as they see fit. Individual chapters can be rearranged or eliminated. Derivative works can be produced. The only downside to this (until it really catches on) is that choices are limited.
Until professors get on the clue train, students probably won't find the textbook they need for any particular class. It's still worth searching the Flat World Knowledge catalog for college textbooks to download online ...what are you waiting for? This is the future. Dive in!
Ad supported free downloads. Many categories. Quality texts.
Free Online Courses and Video Lectures
Download in MP4, FLV, 3GP, MP3 and Torrents. This site, categorizes video lectures delivered by top universities covering such topics as "Marketing Management" from the London School of Business and Finance (23 videos) and "Math 65 - Introductory Algebra" from Portland Community College (40 videos). If you love to learn and your best learning style is auditory or visual -- lock the door, turn off the phone and hit the download. This site delivers a lifetime of learning. I only wish they had a rating system so the best lectures could float to the top.
Download College Textbooks Online at Project Gutenberg
This is usually my first stop as they have 20,000 free online books. Copyright free. Most are classics.
The leader in digital downloads - but none of it free. They do have lots of online learning modules that come free with the textbook; may be worth the price of admission.
Internet Public Library
Organized by subject matter. Find links to great resources or look up a book to see if it is already digitized and online.
I've become a huge fan of Librivox. This is a non-profit org that provides free audiobooks (download or streaming) by allowing volunteer readers to record and upload works that are in the public domain. Perfect for bedtime story hour.
Light and Matter
Free physics textbooks. Professors take a look at these beautiful adobe.pdf format texts.
Super Groovy List of Science and Math Texts
Free online Science and Math books - an extensive list by the fabulous, Professor Mark Dubin, at the University of Colorado.
Very useful and searchable database of scholarly books, articles and journals. Usually, the entire book is not accessible, but you can access a few pages, and that is often enough when you are writing a paper. Especially since you can search for a topic and access that particular page inside the book.
Seachable database of full text online books. Wow. That's all I can say Google is WOW. And thanks! (You can toggle between all books and full view books.
Alex Catalogue of Electronic Texts
This is a search engine for Electronic Texts. Highly useful for finding college textbooks available to download online in a particular subject or by author. I looked up Charles Darwin and found 300 texts, not all of them different texts, but enough individual texts that I could put together a sizeable essay without once hitting the non-virtual library or bookstore. The Alex Catalogue mostly focuses on American and English literature as well as Western philosophy.
Amazon Kindle Textbooks
If you are in pinch and need your book right away - this will do - but really? So expensive. It's only 20% cheaper than the hardback edition. They can see you textbook desperado's coming from a mile away. You would be better off buying the hard copy and selling it at the end of the quarter.
Find free college textbooks to download. Add content. Tell others. All legit stuff. These are textbooks in the public domain or used with permission. Try searching for "lecture notes" to see if your course is in the database. Viva la revolution.
SCAM. The bait... Millions of titles available to download for a one time fee of $49.99. The hook... Save hundreds of dollars! The switch... much, much fewer than millions of titles - it would be a miracle if you found your textbook. Try using the search function. They will return a result no matter what you type in. Type in something silly and, what do you know... they have that textbook! Do not waste your money folks. Even the domain name is a ripoff of Apple's new, Multi-Touch Textbook. (see above) update... TouchTextbooks.com has since moved onto a new domain name... something with "android" in the name... same scam, new name. You see their very professional videos all over youtube. Nice job on the videos! Too bad they don't just start a legit business producing great videos for the world cuz their videos are really nice (and believable).
Wiki Books -- Open Books for an Open World
Wiki Books has 130 completed books written by cooperative effort. I have linked to the completed book section because they have a very large database of books that have been started, but still need help to be completed. If you are an engineer, scientist or mathematician looking for a place to devote some volunteer time... Wiki Books needs you. You will be helping to build a world wide resource of free books for people that don't yet have access to top level information.
California Community College students are about to be treated to free digital textbooks beginning in 2013. Print versions will be available at $20 per book. California is building a digital repository of textbooks to help students lower the cost of attending college. California is a great state in many ways.
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