Are you done with Medical school or you just completed a medical exam and do not know what to do with your old medical textbooks?
Or is there a recent release of an update on a particular medical textbook? And maybe you do not want to crowd your home with old books which may be of little to no value to you.
By the end of this post, you will find out ways through which you can put these old textbooks to good use.
Medicine and Surgery is one course where there is almost a yearly update in the content of the textbooks which students use. This is expected because of the ever-evolving concepts and ideas in the field. Today, it may be a new update in one surgical method, tomorrow, it could be a revision of a clinical procedure.
And one thing that remains constant is that students need to be updated with the current information so that they can adapt to the new concepts.
But the question is; what do you do with your old medical books after you must have updated to the new edition of the book?
Is it really important to use the recent editions of medical textbooks?
Information is key in every field of life. Much more is in fields like Medicine and surgery where very minute details are taken very seriously mainly because human lives are involved. For every update in a medical textbook, you will always find very significant differences in the facts contained in the older editions.
Sometimes, the values and figures of certain parameters may change, there may be added diagrams that could facilitate learning, some definitions of terms will most likely change too and many more.
So it is of paramount importance that you always keep to date with the latest release of medical textbooks whenever it is published.
Are my old medical textbooks completely a waste?
Just because your old medical textbooks contain outdated information does not mean that they could not be used again. There are many institutes that specialize in research, and data from these old texts are valuable in the process.
Apart from that, books can be recycled in many useful and creative ways you may have never thought of. Keep reading to find out how you can recycle your old textbooks.
What Should I do with the old Medical Textbooks?
It is usually painful for many medical students whenever there is a new release of medical textbooks in the markets. This simply means that they can no longer use the textbooks which older colleagues might have borrowed. It also means that they will have to spend money on the new textbooks, and they may as well want to get rid of their old medical textbooks.
But this post was created just to solve the last problem; “knowing what to do with the old medical textbooks”. And these solutions include;
1. Donate them
This option can be painful especially when the textbook is worth lots of money. But what can you do? You don’t want to through them away in the waste bin or even burn the books, you just have to give them out as an act of charity.
There are many places where you can donate your old medical textbooks and they include;
- The Asia Foundation’s Books for Asia Program: This is for medical students and doctors living in Asia. You can find more about them by visiting their website.
- Books for Africa: This organization is the largest that accepts book donation in Africa with over 50 million books donated according to their records.
- Donate to the library: The library is the easiest place to donate your book. Instead of looking out of non-governmental organizations to donate these books to, just go to your school library or a nearby library and give it to them. The librarians know best how to handle old books.
- Global Medical Libraries: Global Medical Libraries (GML) aim to cover the gap in learning and education between developing countries and under-developed countries. They do this by providing health workers with the necessary learning materials they need to be well educated to serve their communities. You can donate your old medical books to this organization if you know any of their branches around you.
- Book Aid International: This is organization is affiliated with Rotary International, and their major goal is to give out reformed donated books to support and encourage literacy in developing countries of the world. Visit their website for more information about them.
- Bridge to Asia: This is also another organization based in China and Southeast Asia. To learn more about how to donate your medical books to them, visit them today.
- Other ways of donating your medical books include:
- Donate it to a church or religious organization
- Sabre Foundation
- Donate them to a thrift shop
- Use BookCrossing; a website that allows you to lease old books for someone nearby to freely make use of them.
- Set up a free Ebook store. This is not necessarily a store in form of a building. The books could be under your care, but you give them out to people nearby who may need them and they would return them later.
- Dash them out to a friend,
2. Recycle them
If you don’t want to give out your book to charity, maybe you feel it will be of no value to whoever might receive it, then the next option is to recycle the books.
There are tons of creative things which you can turn your medical books into, especially those big ones with a thick cover. But one thing is that they all require some creativity and a little work to get it done. Some of them include:
- Book Clock (Find out how to turn your book into a creative clock)
- Picture frame
- Jewelry box
- Book cover clutch
- Flower box
- Send them to Scrap paper recycling factories, etc.
Find out about other creative things you can turn your books into here.
3. Sell them
Selling your old medical textbooks is still an option especially if you think they could still be useful to some people. I created a separate post on how to sell your study materials and books online, you can use the information as a guide.
Also, you can sell the hard copy version of your old medical textbooks even in some stores, libraries, and certain organizations.
Some websites where you can sell these books include;
- Amazon (Seller Central)
- Half price books
- Books finder
- Books run
- Fat brain
- My book cart
- Books run
- Antiques.Lovetoknow (Antiques Medical books) and many others.
4. Keep a Library/archive of old medical textbooks
Are you a natural lover of books? Then this option is for you.
Some people actually love keeping their own collection of books, and I have seen some who love the smell of books too.
So if you are this type, then you can consider setting out a special room in your home where you can keep these outdated medical books for reference purposes, personal research, and for people who visit your home to use them.
5. Trade them for new books
Yes, a couple of organizations and websites actually offer you new books in exchange for your old books. So instead of selling them or giving them out, you can use them to secure the books you may need for the next medical exam you will be writing.
This is actually cost-effective, and could mean that you can pass through medical school buying just a set of medical books while you keep trading them for new ones as you progress in your medical career.
Some sites where you can engage in this book exchange program include:
- Paper Back Swaps
- Book Mooch
- Books free swap
- Book crossing
- Princh Library
- Book Swap Facebook Groups (Search for book swap on Facebook)
Also, you can exchange your books with other items on certain websites which include:
3 Things You Should Never Do to Your Old Book
- Do not burn them: Books are products of one’s hard work and they cost money too.
- Do not throw them away. Lend them out instead if you think they are of no use, or keep take them to a nearby Library if no one wants them.
- Do not give them to someone who will do any of the above.
Books no matter how old they may be can still be very useful. It is understandable how annoying it can be when you have to buy new editions of medical books when you already have the old medical textbooks.
But this post has shown you how to still make those books to be useful to people including yourself without feeling much of the pain caused by the cost of buying new medical textbooks.