University programmes and courses often have long reading lists. These lists include information about the books you need to buy and will be readily available to you at the start of the course/programme. The books can be quite expensive, and add up to a few thousand Swedish crowns per semester. You can save a lot of money by buying second-hand books or borrowing them from the library.
Don’t buy all the books on the first day. However, don’t wait too long either. Some of the books on the list are only intended as reference literature and it may therefore be sufficient to consult them in the library. The cheapest option is to borrow books from the university libraries or from students who have previously taken the course.
Borrowing from the library
There are usually a few copies of books on reading lists at one of the university libraries. Books on reading lists can usually only be borrowed for 14 days from faculty libraries, so it is a good idea to plan when you want to borrow the book (i.e. at the start of the course or towards the end). You can also reserve books if they are already on loan to someone else. Students are welcome to borrow books from any of the university libraries.
Another good way to save money is to buy books second-hand. There are shops in Lund where you can buy and sell second-hand academic books. There are also websites where you can buy second-hand academic books.
Check that the book you are buying is not full of notes. In some courses, you can take books to the exam, and you could be found guilty of cheating if there are notes in your books. Also check that you have the right edition of the book, as there are sometimes significant differences between editions.
A good guide price for a second-hand book in very good condition is around 60 per cent of the original price; a well-thumbed copy should be cheaper.
Make sure when buying new books that you get the right edition. A bookshop won’t always necessarily have the latest one. Also check delivery times – a book that arrives a week after the exam is of very little use.
Links to libraries and bookstores can be found on this page. Please note that most of the links are to Swedish websites, but there are sometimes English translation options.
Find course literature
The links below are to external websites. Most of them are in Swedish but some are (partly) in English or have automatic translation modules.
- Amazon (UK)
- KFS Studentbokhandel (LTH)
- Norstedts Juridik
- Språkbokhandeln i Lund
Price comparison websites