The topic of textbooks being an absolute necessity to ensure success in grad school most likely varies program to program. For example, I would imagine that in Law School it is definitely necessary to not only own, but to read to succeed in class every day. However, my experience with text books in PT school has been this: It Depends (I know this is the WORST answer, I hate it too) .
Before starting my program, I just assumed that I would need to purchase every book that was required for every single class. I was able to save a lot of money through websites like Amazon (the Holy Grail), as well as buying several of the books and manuals at discounted prices from DPT2’s.
During undergrad, in general, I personally didn’t really need from textbooks unless I needed further clarification on difficult concepts. I quickly found out that I am the same way in PT school. I think I could count the number of times I have opened my books on one hand (This is not including the lab manuals provided by the professors), with the exception of Gross Anatomy. I use my Anatomy Atlas every day, as anatomy is a very visual class, and I also reference the textbook quite a bit for clarification purposes. Other than that, I really could have gone without purchasing the majority of my textbooks – I will hopefully not be making the same mistake in the future.
While going without textbooks may be a technique that works for me, please keep in mind that it may not work for you! Obviously everyone learns differently so if reading about the material you’ve learned in class, helps to reinforce the concepts then definitely purchase them. Learn how you study best and go from there. 🙂