Getting ready for back to school? College students and their parents should expect higher textbook prices in New Jersey this year.

The average student at a public or private four year college spent roughly $1,000 on textbooks and course materials last year a three percent increase from 2010.

“Some things that publishing companies do that force texbook prices to go up include issuing new editions that don’t really have many changes in them, they can also come with unnecessary cd’s or workbooks that you don’t really need in the class” said Jen Kim, an advocate at NJPIRG.

Add high textbook costs to tuition payments, meals and dorm fees and you’re talking a hefty bill to start school this year.

“Its tough being a student these days and these prices are unfortunately out of reach for many students. In some cases they end up not buying the book which can make the class that much more difficult.”

Kim says shopping around could save you up some big bucks, up to eighty percent on your total bill.

“My advice for students that are about to head back to school would be to shop around…check your local bookstore, check out a used bookstore, go online to find a cheaper version or use a book rental company.”

The bottom line is, there are ways to cut costs.

“You just have to do a little research” said Kim.

WHAT STUDENTS ARE PAYING FOR BOOKS

HOW MUCH DID YOU PAY FOR TEXT BOOKS? LEAVE YOUR COMMENT BELOW