Library's Hours:
Sun 11/27 1pm - 12am

How to Find Affordable Textbooks

Before we start

Remember when you searched for your classes at the time of registration? Find out if your class uses zero cost course materials by looking for this zero cost icon in the course catalog. If your class is a zero cost course, please check the syllabus or with your professor to make sure that there is a free version of the textbook provided either at the library or somewhere you can access.

Zero Textbook Cost class example

Now, let's get started on finding the textbooks


  • Note down the book's title, edition and author.
  • Know your class name and section

Step 1: Check Resources from the Library

  1. eTextbooks

    Your textbook might be available for free digitally from the library website.

  2. Course Reserves

    Check out a physical copy of your textbook or reading material at the circulation desk on the first floor.

  3. Library OneSearch

    OneSearch lets you search for books, articles, media, journals, and more from across the CSU libraries, all in one unified search engine.

Step 2: Check Resources on Campus

  1. A.S. Affordable Textbook Program

    Students qualifying for grants can get a $100 voucher off their purchase at the Spartan Bookstore.

  2. Spartan Bookstore Credit

    Waiting for financial aid to come in or your next paycheck to cover textbook costs? You can charge up to $900 from the Spartan Bookstore to your my.sjsu account. Just make sure to pay it off before the semester deadline.

Step 3: Check Online Resources

The AL$ team has compiled a list of helpful websites to help you get the best deals on textbooks.

Additional Resources