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Should you always buy your own AP books?

kimmylouiekimmylouie Registered User Posts: 1,451 Senior Member
edited July 2012 in AP Tests Preparation
Or can you borrow it from the library?

I'm asking this because I'm debating whether buy 6 prep books is economical? I know 60 is meager compared to what I might spent in college. But I already regreat buying so much SAT material the last 2 years and like 2 shelves are all my SAT books. My library has a lot of barron AP books, but you can't write on it (duh. xD). So is there a substantial difference or not?

p.s. I'm taking these classes so maybe you can give me more tips and quirks and whatnot? It would be so amazing!

Physics/Chem (Haven't decided, but must take one..), bio, environ sci (a ccer told me it's a good pair! Also heard it's pretty easy), comp sci
Post edited by kimmylouie on

Replies to: Should you always buy your own AP books?

  • rspencerspence Registered User Posts: 2,118 Senior Member
    Just borrow them, save money. When taking a practice test, you could just write your answers on your own sheet of paper.
  • gomdorrigomdorri Registered User Posts: 721 Member
    Sometimes you don't have a choice. If you don't need to take notes in the book and your library has the books, then don't buy the books. Seriously. Use everything you can. My school library has probably ~5 AP books, and all of them are dated around 2000 and I'm still grateful for those LOL. At my public library, I can't even find that much, although I did find the latest Barron's for chem, which is awesome.

    I had to buy most of my study guides (thank goodness I was able to convince my friends to lend me theirs for some of my classes) and it was costly. I wish the public library had more AP books to lend out.
  • kimmylouiekimmylouie Registered User Posts: 1,451 Senior Member
    gomdorri, my library doesn't have a lot of AP books too, but have you tried requesting? In my city, one library has like ALL the test prep. Just wait a few days and get books! :)

    My library has like ALL the common AP tests in Barron.

    Here's the plan of the books:

    bio (barron, kaplan, 500 AP questions, library)
    environ sci (barron, library)
    comp sci (Barron, amazon)

    p.s. crossed out physics. Too much work.
  • Emily556Emily556 - Posts: 152 Junior Member
    I really like buying my own AP books, but that's because I "need" to write in books to understand things. It seems weird, but the mere act of highlighting for me increases the amount of knowledge that I intake. That may be because I have a very short attention span, and my eyes sometimes glaze over as I read AP books though.

    I really do think that it's helpful to be able to write in your books, but depending on the type of learner that you are, you may be just fine with borrowing books and being a lot more economical (and smart) and just using some scratch paper.
  • gomdorrigomdorri Registered User Posts: 721 Member
    My library doesn't have the books period. You can request books and place them on hold on your account if you go onto the library catalog, search for the book, log in, and place a hold.

    It's not that I am too late to get the books. It's that no one in my area cares about APs so the library doesn't bother to get AP study guides LOL.
  • Emily556Emily556 - Posts: 152 Junior Member
    @gomdorri awww, that's too bad. You can visit AbeBooks Official Site - New & Used Books, New & Used Textbooks, Rare & Out of Print Books they often have some less expensive AP books if you are worried about pricing. I know a lot of my friends get textbooks and AP books there.
  • 4khaos4khaos Registered User Posts: 469 Member
    If you're fortunate enough to have a local or school library where you can borrow AP books, I would use those free resources! It doesn't matter if they're a few years old (unless it's one of the newly changed subjects).

    There's also free resources online for practically every subject, and some AP courses don't really need self-prepping if you have a good teacher. Also, you might ask older students who still have their books - they might even give it to you for free. It would be a waste of money to buy several new books for every subject.
  • Emily556Emily556 - Posts: 152 Junior Member
    Yes! I would definitely recommend Hippocampus! Also 4khaos is right, there are a lot of students (me) who have a ton of books to get rid of and would either give them to you for free or sell them to you dirt cheap
  • kimmylouiekimmylouie Registered User Posts: 1,451 Senior Member
    Um, so want to sell me some dirt cheap books?
  • WeekndWeeknd Registered User Posts: 998 Member
    ^ thats what i was thinking the whole time while reading it. Wasn't man enough to ask
  • wynterwynter Registered User Posts: 359 Member
    I'd also offer that generally 1 review book is all you'll need for a 5. I don't see much point in reading the PR, Barrons, and Kaplan for one test - it's usually the same information rephrased. Maybe just for the practice tests I guess, but there are enough actually released from the college board and this year they are releasing a new one in most common subjects (I believe there are 15).
  • kimmylouiekimmylouie Registered User Posts: 1,451 Senior Member
    I'm seriously not trying to be rude, but seriously, I've been going to so many bookstores to get a good deal. And everything is like 20% of original price, which is still more expensive than buying a new book from amazon.

    But thanks guys! And @wynter, I totally agree with you. Buying 3 different AP books is kinda like repeating same information. But I heard PR is pretty good. And Barron is really detailed, so it can go both ways.
  • rspencerspence Registered User Posts: 2,118 Senior Member
    I'd first see if you can borrow any prep books from anyone (library, school, friends). Only if I'm really struggling with an AP course and if I can't borrow a book for some reason, then I'd think about buying a prep book.
This discussion has been closed.