Textbooks for Uni - When and where should you get these? Watch

oliveroll
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Hi all!

I may sound incredibly stupid for asking this question (it may have already been asked before) so please forgive me.

I have accepted an offer to study Law at a central London university this September, and as I am an international student I'm not completely certain about the administrative logistics of going to Uni. I understand that for law, we will have textbooks, and recommended reading material but as I currently do not live in the UK:

1. Would it be better to buy textbooks before or after reaching the UK?
2. Where I would be able to buy Law textbooks? (1st or 2nd hand)

But I'm not too sure if we will only be given a comprehensive list of textbooks/recommended reading material once we have started the course.

So please, slap me in the face with some reality.

Thank you!
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lascelles
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Don't buy all the text books. Your uni library will have most, either hard copy or digital.
I'd choose ones you think sound most important and get those.

I'd wait til you're here and order them on the internet... Either amazon or eBay


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LeaX
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It will vary depending on your uni but I don't think you should rush into buying textbooks. In my first term I bought all the recommended course textbooks which were only useful for the first 10 weeks of the year. Also some lecturers give you a different textbooks for further reading each lecture so it's best just to use the library. This term I didn't buy any textbooks and I managed to have two textbooks from the library for the whole term by repeatedly renewing them haha. Saved me like £60.
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EloiseStar
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(Original post by oliveroll)
Hi all!

I may sound incredibly stupid for asking this question (it may have already been asked before) so please forgive me.

I have accepted an offer to study Law at a central London university this September, and as I am an international student I'm not completely certain about the administrative logistics of going to Uni. I understand that for law, we will have textbooks, and recommended reading material but as I currently do not live in the UK:

1. Would it be better to buy textbooks before or after reaching the UK?
2. Where I would be able to buy Law textbooks? (1st or 2nd hand)

But I'm not too sure if we will only be given a comprehensive list of textbooks/recommended reading material once we have started the course.

So please, slap me in the face with some reality.

Thank you!
Buy the text books once you have started the course, perhaps the second or third week. Usually the course lecturer will issue a list of books and highlight a few that are of most relevance. Ebay and Amazon are the places I normally go to, although if you are on Facebook, usually there will be older students selling their old copies and will sell them on at a reasonable rate!

I can't speak for law specifically but usually the lecturer will state a specific year of publication needed for a book so that you have the latest information. So make sure when you are buying second or first hand, that it is the right version.
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oliveroll
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Ok cool! Thank you so much everyone!
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arguendo
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For law, you will need to have the specific edition recommended - it might sound obvious, but the point is that law can change enormously in a very short space of time. I know people who have bought the previous edition and then had to spend all their time in the library reading the new edition / ended up buying a new, current copy.

I'm going to deviate from what someone said above - I personally would buy the recommended textbooks and not try to rely on library copies. Having done law at UG, my experience was that there weren't enough copies for all students to do that, and I was forever lugging huge textbooks back to the library when someone else had put them on hold. It was easier to have my own copy that I could use whenever I wanted, and that I could highlight etc if I wanted to.

Buy them when you're in the UK - they're absolutely huge and heavy, so do not buy them at home and try to bring them over. Amazon is your best bet for new copies; for secondhand current editions, you might find your law society does a secondhand book sale. If not, 2nd years will be desperate to shift their copies on Facebook.

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oliveroll
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(Original post by arguendo)
For law, you will need to have the specific edition recommended - it might sound obvious, but the point is that law can change enormously in a very short space of time. I know people who have bought the previous edition and then had to spend all their time in the library reading the new edition / ended up buying a new, current copy.

I'm going to deviate from what someone said above - I personally would buy the recommended textbooks and not try to rely on library copies. Having done law at UG, my experience was that there weren't enough copies for all students to do that, and I was forever lugging huge textbooks back to the library when someone else had put them on hold. It was easier to have my own copy that I could use whenever I wanted, and that I could highlight etc if I wanted to.

Buy them when you're in the UK - they're absolutely huge and heavy, so do not buy them at home and try to bring them over. Amazon is your best bet for new copies; for secondhand current editions, you might find your law society does a secondhand book sale. If not, 2nd years will be desperate to shift their copies on Facebook.

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Thanks Arguendo! I'll bear in mind your suggestions! Thanks again!
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arguendo
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Oh one last suggestion - if you're buying second hand, be wary of heavily marked copies. This is more pertinent for statute books.

Sometimes law exams will be semi open book - meaning that you can take a clean copy of a statute book into the exam. If you buy a marked statute book, or mark your statute book before being told the exam conditions, you may find you need to buy another one.

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_salaan
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I'd wait too.
When i first started uni, i blew up my bank account purchasing all the books recommended by my tutors and it was such a waste of money - only used one regularly.
Just borrow from your library - way cheaper since university books cost a limb anyways.
And if you do purchase books, I'd advise you to use the bookstore at your uni (if they have one - because they usually have discounts) and Amazon.
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ErinBliss
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(Original post by _salaan)
I'd wait too.
When i first started uni, i blew up my bank account purchasing all the books recommended by my tutors and it was such a waste of money - only used one regularly.
Just borrow from your library - way cheaper since university books cost a limb anyways.
And if you do purchase books, I'd advise you to use the bookstore at your uni (if they have one - because they usually have discounts) and Amazon.
Do you think renting/ borrowing books from any website will be a good alternative? Just in case if the library runs out of recommended books aand I do not plan to buy loads of books every freakin' semester. Do you happen to know any good websites?

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_salaan
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(Original post by ErinBliss)
Do you think renting/ borrowing books from any website will be a good alternative? Just in case if the library runs out of recommended books aand I do not plan to buy loads of books every freakin' semester. Do you happen to know any good websites?

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I'd honestly advise you to wait it out until you know which books you'll have to be using regularly - roughly after 2 weeks. This will most likely occur in your core modules. I've found that with optional modules, you don't need to buy their recommendations - just make sure you're reading around the topics though. This might be different to you however, as I study International relations & devil.

In regards to websites, I only know of a website where you can download books online. I don't know if it's legal but it's done me a world of good: libgen.org


Plus, if you google "sconul" and register yourself after you've enrolled at your uni - you'll have access to pretty much any university's library.
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ErinBliss
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(Original post by _salaan)
I'd honestly advise you to wait it out until you know which books you'll have to be using regularly - roughly after 2 weeks. This will most likely occur in your core modules. I've found that with optional modules, you don't need to buy their recommendations - just make sure you're reading around the topics though. This might be different to you however, as I study International relations & devil.

In regards to websites, I only know of a website where you can download books online. I don't know if it's legal but it's done me a world of good: libgen.org

Plus, if you google "sconul" and register yourself after you've enrolled at your uni - you'll have access to pretty much any university's library.
I also happen to be taking IR but I'll start this September. Thanks for the advice and your suggestions, I'll keep them in mind. Anyway, where are you studying, do they really teach you IR and devil? Looks weird
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_salaan
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(Original post by ErinBliss)
I also happen to be taking IR but I'll start this September. Thanks for the advice and your suggestions, I'll keep them in mind. Anyway, where are you studying, do they really teach you IR and devil? Looks weird

You're most welcome and sorry that auto correct haha - I meant IR and development and I'm studying at Westminster
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