Getting Textbooks

July 26th, 2010

One common question we get in the library, especially near the beginning of a semester, is: “Do you have my textbook?”

Like many academic libraries, we have some textbooks on the shelves, but not a lot, and usually older editions.  The cost and quantity of texts needed for every class is prohibitive for libraries. And even if purchased, the first student in the door would get to check out the book and keep it for long enough that it likely wouldn’t be available for others in the class.

We do, however, have a system for books to be in the library on our “reserves” shelf.  That has the benefit of letting a lot of students use it in a short period of time – typically 2 hours or sometimes overnight or 2 day loan (that’s decided by the instructor).  We hope to have as many IU East and Ivy Tech faculty as possible put their textbooks on reserve.  If your professor hasn’t put a copy of your textbook on reserve, you might ask them – our faculty is very committed to student success (which of course includes you completing assigned textbook readings!).

The bookstore also provides an alternative to purchasing the textbook.  Beginning in August, instead of buying textbooks, IU East students will have the option of renting them – generally for about 45% of the book’s price.  They let you highlight them and write notes in them (practices which we discourage with library books!) – as long as it remains in ‘buyback’ quality.  Then, you return them by ten days after finals week ends (or postmark them, for you distance ed students).  Almost all textbooks are available for the program except ones that come with a CD or a passcode for electronic bonuses.

Look up your classes and see if you can rent at:

Whether you buy, rent, or read a reserve copy of a textbook, we hope to see you in the IU East Campus Library!