Monday, September 1, 2008


Written by Scott Gilbert

Buying textbooks is a notoriously stressful time for students. The period is characterized by feelings of joy associated with beginning a new school year, anxiety as you flip through the pages for the first time, and finally and grueling pinch when the teller rings up the total - $648 – ARGGG!!!!!!

Not everyone will get saddled with a bill that high, but many students will come very close, particularly those in the sciences. Here are some tips for mitigating these costs, and recouping what you have lost in previous years.

First and foremost, a note to second year students. NOW IS YOUR CHANCE to sell your books from last year to the new first year's. Simply posting them to thecannon.ca may not be sufficient – keep in mind that many first year students have not become familiar with the site and many are loaded with entrance scholarships, cash from parents, and their first OSAP installment. If you want to sell your books to them, then best place to go is the U of G library. Tons of new students are flooding in there right now willing to pay top dollar for the books in your closet – go there, find the students before they spend all their cash, and encourage them to save money by buying your books.

For other students, you will certainly want to post your used books here on thecannon.ca – our site is probably the primary source for buying and selling books. You can usually get more for your used books here than the university will offer you at the end of the semester in their book buyback period.

If you can't find the books you need, or the edition you want, your next best option is the Co-op Bookstore which is located in the basement of Johnston Hall. This is run for students, by students, and is a registered co-operative so should be widely supported by the student body. Plus the staff are great!

The University Bookstore can be used as well, but there are a host of reasons why the above options should be explored first. This bookstore is located just North-West of the University Centre at the base of the MacNaughton Building.

This is your basic “how to” on buying and selling textbooks. Stay tuned for a more in-depth analysis on textbooks, which ones you actually need, and why they are so expensive.

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  1. Posted by: dip on Sep 1, 2008 @ 6:51pm

    bla bla

  2. Posted by: itshardtopost on Sep 2, 2008 @ 1:15pm

    Good advice, though personally, I'm not a big fan of the co-op bookstore. The prices are only better some of the time, and I've noticed that if you ever need to return a book, the co-op hassles you way more than the University bookstore. Personally, I'd rather pay the extra $10 at the Uni bookstore than end up stuck with books I might not need because the co-op wouldn't let me return.

  3. Posted by: Jammin' on Sep 2, 2008 @ 1:37pm

    The best part of the Co-op bookstore isn’t the price (because I find the price is also not much better than the regular bookstore) but it’s that they get all the books for you. It’s like the full-service book shopping on campus. Even in my 4th year I always feel like I’m about to buy the wrong book, the Co-op bookstore takes the worry out of book buying.

  4. Posted by: DouglasJ on Sep 4, 2008 @ 8:55am

    If someone leaves you a phone number on their ad, best idea is to call them. E-mails are awesome cheap and they're also incredibly inefficient time-wise. I'll have conversations in email over a week that I could've easily done in 30 seconds on the phone. By the time you actually arrange a pick-up time they could've sold the book to three or four other students.

  5. Posted by: Jammin' on Sep 5, 2008 @ 2:19pm

    Can I just say, for a campus/news website this is poorly updated!!

    Classes have started and the only two new articles are on textbooks and the hurricane. What about all the stuff happening on campus…did you happen to miss O-Week going on?? What about the Federal by-election going on in Guelph?!? Guelph has a popular Green candidate running and a high-profile NDP, you think you would be in heaven right now.

    Where is the controversy? Where are the articles bashing the university administration, protesting KFC’s or overtaking town hall meetings?

    You have at your fingertips an array of topics and it baffles my mind, and disappoints me, that I am not reading about any of it. Despite my personal and political objections to much of what is written on here, I do enjoy reading and responding.

    If I’m not mistaken we pay for thecannon to operate, so what exactly are we paying for right now?!?

  6. Posted by: Beth on Sep 6, 2008 @ 12:22am

    I think that the Cannon.ca should do more to advertise so that students know its out there. I only heard about it through another student who by chance stumbled upon it.

  7. Posted by: Kenny on Sep 6, 2008 @ 5:42pm

    What a negative representation of our students, you shouldn't be encouraging students to exploit each other. Rather distasteful.

  8. Posted by: Hammad on Sep 7, 2008 @ 12:00am

    Wait- how do you sell texts in the library?? I can't really go around holding a sign with "ECON text for sale; midterms a coming!". Is there a place I should go to in the lib?

  9. Posted by: Aaron on Sep 8, 2008 @ 12:48am

    Jammin': Perhaps you should volunteer to write some articles for the website?

  10. Posted by: Jammin' on Sep 8, 2008 @ 11:54pm

    Aaron: Perhaps you should realize that thecannon 'employees' people to research and write articles. Letters to the editor and opinion pieces are great every once and awhile, but it's no substitute for article written by "journalists" (or whatever thecannon writers call themselves).

    And besides, I've submitted material and I never see it posted.

  11. Posted by: itshardtopost on Sep 9, 2008 @ 10:49am

    I would hardly call thecannon.ca writers journalists, or at least good journalists. Half of the articles I've seen written in the last year are just dripping with the author's bias.

  12. Posted by: Editor on Sep 11, 2008 @ 12:14am

    Hi Folks,

    Thank you all for your worthwhile comments. To provide some perspective, the cannon staff changes each year, usually in April. This year there were not enough applicants, so there were absolutely no employees until about a week ago. The new editor (myself, Scott Gilbert) and our new Reporter (Reilly Scott) will do our best to address your valid concerns, and get the site running smoothly again. Sorry we missed frosh week as neither of us had been trained at that point, and I agree, this article is horrible. It was more of a test of the system. Let me sincerely apologize if anyone took offence, and promise to do my best throughout the coming year. You can email me directly at [email protected] with any suggestions or literary contributions. Thanks.

  13. Posted by: Hammad on Sep 12, 2008 @ 10:56am

    I see...so no one's going to answer my question... ==

    Editor, hello; your response was well done and respectable. Thank you.

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