Architecture School - What Books Should I Buy?

Hello and welcome to another Architecture School blog post.

Reading books is a vital part of your education and will undoubtedly make you a better designer in the long run. It can be daunting when you get a list of books through from your school outlining the required reading for the year, Architecture books are expensive and can quickly run up a steep bill. Don't worry, it's not bad news!


Hold off on buying ANY of the books on the required list because if it's on there your school's library should hold a copy of it. You should be able to check what books your school library holds through their online portal. Sometimes your school won't carry a physical copy; however, you may be able to download a PDF of the book through your school's online library.

If a book on the required list isn't available in your school's library OR available through the online portal you can request that the library purchases a copy. Every department is given a budget at the start of the year to purchase books, you'll have a strong case for it as it's on the required list.

Many books are available for free as a PDF through your search engine, simply type in the book you're looking for followed by PDF. The benefit of a PDF copy is your ability to search by word quickly, this will be particularly useful when you are trying to find information on a particular area of study.


Some books are worth buying a copy because they'll become frequent reference books. You'll know after a month or two which books you find yourself referring to often, these are the ones worth investing in.

ALWAYS shop second hand! If a book has been on the required list for several years you should be able to find older students or graduates selling their books for a fraction of the price. Books from the first few years are generally available readily second hand as younger students are more likely to panic buy the whole list.

Read your books, and don't panic buy!


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