This article explains how much you can expect to have to spend on books and course materials for your University course.
The average cost of study materials for an academic year is around £500. This will vary depending on your course. Some areas of study (for example, art and design courses) may require additional materials, equipment and/or uniforms and this can increase the costs significantly. Some other courses may involve field trips.
Tips to keep the costs down
• The University provides over 600 student PCs and Apple Macs in open access areas across campus for you to use, so try to make the most of these rather than buying an expensive laptop.
• Check out the Students' Union, local shops and your departmental notice board and auction websites for bargain books.
• Carry your NUS card with you so that you can take advantage of discounts. Lots of shops offer a 10–15% discount to students.
• Don't buy all the books on your reading list. Talk to your tutors and find out what the key texts are. Look for second-hand copies, or better still, use the Library.
• If you're in halls, wi-fi is included in your rent. Use it for research and accessing the Library.
• Lots of books are available online, this can be great if you only need to read a chapter.
• The University offers cheaper printing for draft copies, which is fine for most things. Good copies are only needed for assessed work.
• The University gives some free credit on photocopying and printing at the beginning of the year - make sure you use this wisely.
• Only print what is necessary and, if possible, take hand-written notes instead.
• You may be able to share the cost of textbooks with friends on the same course and then study together.