Purchasing Your Textbooks at the York U Bookstore

Posted by York & U on September 3, 2019

Academic Success | Archive

It’s time to start thinking about purchasing your textbooks for the Fall term, Lions! Whether you’re looking for a Calculus textbook or the latest edition of Shakespeare’s Hamlet, the York University Bookstore is the place to go for all your textbook needs. Today’s #YUBlog post is here to give you an overview of the amazing services the YU Bookstore has to offer, from selling and renting books to purchasing digital materials and academic supplies!

An image of the Keele Campus Bookstore storefront.
Find the York U Keele Campus Bookstore in York Lanes!

Buying Your Textbooks In-Store

An image of the lower level of the Keele Campus Bookstore, showing merchandise and textbooks.
All the textbooks on the Keele campus can be found in the basement of the Bookstore!

You can find all the textbooks and other course materials you need on the lower level of the Keele campus bookstore located in York Lanes or in York Hall 030B at the Glendon campus. You’ll see aisles of various textbooks organized by subject at these locations. Simply find the aisle with your subject and then scan the shelves for your specific course.

The table below (organized alphabetically by subject) has been provided by the Keele campus Bookstore to help you find your textbooks quickly:

Subject Aisle # Subject Aisle #
Administrative Studies 7B Human Rights & Equity 5A
American Sign Language 8B Humanities 2B & 3A
Anthropology 5A Indigenous Studies 5B
Art History 8A Information Technology 9
Bethune College 4B Kinesiology & Health Science 4A
Biochemistry 4B Kinesiology Practical 4A
Biology 4B Language & Learning Seminar 8B
Canadian Studies 3B Languages 8B
Chemistry 4B Law – OPD 4A
Civil Engineering 9 Law – Regular 4A
Cognitive Science 3B Linguistics 8B
Communication Studies 5A Mathematics 4B
Critical Disability Studies 4A Mechanical Engineering 9
Culture 3B Modes of Reasoning 3B
Dance 8A Music 8A
Design 8A Natural Science 6B
Disaster & Emergency Management 7B Nursing 4A
Dispute Resolution 3B Philosophy 3B
Earth Space Science & Engineering 9 Physics 4B
Economics 7B Political Studies 5B
Education 2A Pre-University 3B
Electrical Engineering & Computer Science 9 Psychology 9
Engineering 9 Public Policy & Administration 5B
English 1B & 2A School of Continuing Studies 3B
English as a Second Language 8B Schulich School of Business 7A
Environmental Studies 8A Science Technology Studies 6B
Family Mediation 3B Sexuality Studies 6A
Film 8A Social Science 6B
Gender & Women’s Studies 5A Social Work 6A
Geography 5B Sociology 6A
Global Health 4A Theatre 8A
Health Studies 4A Visual Arts 8A
History 1A Writing 1A
Human Resources Management 7B York/Sheridan Design 8A

Once you find the correct subject aisle, you’ll need to find your textbook using a book tag – this is the slip above each stack of books. This tag will be green for Fall term textbooks and beige for Fall/Winter term books. Here are some additional things you should take note of:

  • Course Details – Make sure the course code and title, section and professor are all correct. Sometimes the same course can be taught by different professors who use different books!
  • “Stock in Centre” – This means that the book(s) listed on the book tag can be found in the centre of that aisle, instead of on the shelf.
  • “Flyer to Cashier” – If you see this, that means there is an eBook available for the textbook. You’ll need to take the flyer hanging next to the book tag to the cashier in order to purchase and receive your digital textbook.
An image of a yellow book tag next to the Access Code flyer.
This is an example of a flyer for an eBook that must be brought to the cashier.

Success Tip: Before you purchase your course materials, ensure that you checked the course syllabus. Moreover, always keep your proof of purchase for your course materials for any last-minute changes that your instructor might make to the syllabus.

Buying Your Textbooks Online

In order to find the textbooks you need for your class, all you need to do is Find it, Add it and Buy it!

Often, the bookstore’s online textbook search tool can also help you view which textbooks you will need before classes start.
  • Find it: Select the term, department, course and section affiliated with your class.
  • Add it: Click the “ADD” button to add the class to your course list. If you would like to add another course, select “add another course.” Repeat this until you have a list of all your classes. Once you’re ready, you can click “GET YOUR BOOKS” to see a full list of the books you need for each of your classes.
  • Buy it: Follow the payment prompts to purchase your textbooks. When checking out, you must choose a shipping method. You can either pick up your textbooks in store or have them shipped to you. Please visit the Bookstore’s Store Policies and Shipping Information webpages for more detailed information.

Success Tip: Even if you plan to buy your textbooks in store, try using the Bookstore’s online textbook search tool to know how much money you need to have on hand or to load onto your YU-Card when you go to purchase your books.

Digital Materials

There are courses at York U that offer eBooks instead of printed textbooks. You can see if your course offers a digital option on the York U Bookstore Access Codes webpage. Remember, some textbooks have flyers next to their book tags that you can use too!

Getting Your Textbooks on a Budget

You can earn Bookstore Rewards and Scholar Dollars to save on student supplies and textbooks at the YU Bookstore. If you shop using “Flex Dollars” (personal funds loaded on your YU-Card) or your bursary funds (also on your YU Card), you can earn 5% back in Scholar Dollars. Your Scholar Dollars can be redeemed for any item in store and if you save up $100 in Scholar Dollars, you can earn a $100 Bookstore gift card! Read more on the Scholar Dollars-Bookstore Rewards webpage.

Bookstore Rentals

The York U Bookstore also offers an in-store rental program. Although not all titles are available for rent, the shelf tag in the store will indicate if a rental option is available. You can rent new or used copies (if available), and even highlight and write notes  regardless of the condition of the book!

If you would like to rent a book from the Bookstore, you will need your YU Card, a second piece of photo ID to prove your age and a valid credit card to guarantee the rental. Visit the Bookstore’s Rent Books webpage for more details and for a full list of tiles available for rent!

Success Tip: If a book you need is available for rent, we encourage you to try the program and benefit from the savings at the beginning of the term. If you change your mind at any time during the semester, you can pay the difference and own the book.

Bookstore Used Textbooks

The York U Bookstore is sourcing as many used copies as possible to lower the cost of your course materials. The used copies (when available) are always shelved together with the new copies and the shelf tag will show both the price for new and used.

Success Tip: As the demand for used copies is high we encourage you to check with the bookstore before your classes start to secure your book at a lower price.

Bookstore Textbook Buyback

The York U Bookstore can help you make cash on your old textbooks. The bookstore can see the demand for textbooks on York University campuses as well as on other campuses in North America. Learn about selling back to the Bookstore or to other students on the York U Bookstore’s Sell Your Books webpage. Our previous #YUBlog post, “Time to Sell Those Textbooks” also offers great tips!

Success Tip: To get the best price on your old textbooks from the York U Bookstore, try to sell them once you finish your exams and during the first week of classes. The demand and value of the books increase during these periods.


An image of a stack of lab coats and stethoscopes in the YU Bookstore.
The York U Bookstore has got you covered with any supplies you may need!

In addition to textbooks, you can get any supplies you may need from pens and paint to lab coats and dissection kits. They have a large selection of general interest books and magazines, including popular fiction and visual novels, too! Be sure to check out both floors of the YU Bookstore for any materials you may need for your courses or to use in your spare time.

Don’t Forget Your York U Merch!

The York U Bookstore is also your one-stop shop for any YU merchandise you may need. You can show your York U pride with program-specific hoodies, York University athletic wear and even souvenirs, such as notebooks and keychains for you and your family!

Success Tip: For your Campus Essentials, check out the York U Bookstore in-store promotions. You will discover great deals on basic items you need for a smooth back-to-school transition.

Lastly the Bookstore is a great place for events. Throughout the year they host author book readings and launches. They are always open to everyone, so come and hang out!

We hope that this overview of the York University Bookstore and finding your textbooks has helped prepare you for the upcoming Fall term! If you need to find textbooks in a pinch, check out our previous #YUBlog post, “Getting Your Textbooks on a Student Budget” for more information.

If you have any questions about the York University Bookstore or finding your textbooks, please comment below or tweet us at @YorkUStudents!

Note: This post is an update from the post originally written by Sophie Morgan.