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Are past notes that great?

  1. Jun 3, 2008 #1
    Hi everyone,

    I was wondering if past notes are really worth that extra $5 or so when buying textbooks from previous owners? I understand that tests and quizzes are important, seeing as they helped me a lot this past year at my school. But are notes really that important as I am sure I will not be missing out on any lectures next year...

    So what do you all say or what have you discovered about their usefulness?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 3, 2008 #2
    Probably not. Sounds like the previous owner is just trying to get some extra money out of you. Also consider what type of student you would be getting the notes from. I never used some other person's notes. If the notes were that good they would keep them for themselves.
  4. Jun 3, 2008 #3
    Thanks for the advice, really made me look at it in a different sense. I usually do keep my own notes when they are great and seem helpful for future uses.
  5. Jun 3, 2008 #4


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    It depends. If the notes you're getting would be the same as the ones you'll be using for the classes you're taking, then it's probably worth getting it. More often than not, you'll find that the textbooks your professors recommend for the course either covers the same concepts in too much depth or in a different manner from the way it's done in the course. You would not know by studying from the textbook alone which chapters would be covered by the course. Having the lecture notes in advance also allow you to study from it beforehand and understand lectures better when you attend them.

    On the other hand, so far all the lecture notes that I've gotten tend to be quite untidy and difficult to read because the previous owner printed multiple pages on the same page to save paper/money. So it's advisable that if you're looking for the course lecture notes, ask for it in BOTH soft and hardcopy, I'm sure he wouldn't charge you extra for the soft copies.
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