People Share Free and Low-Cost Resources That College Students Should Know About

Were your college days pretty much filled with scraping by, eating ramen, and drinking Hamm’s because you were always low on money?

Well, you’re not alone, my friends, because that’s the way it goes for countless numbers of young kids out there just trying to get an education.

And that’s why these resources that folks shared are so helpful for students trying to get by.

AskReddit users offered up free and low-cost resources that college students might want to take advantage of.

1. Cheap software.

“A lot of times your university will have stupid cheap software licenses for students/faculty.

At my university we got Adobe Creative-Cloud licenses for $10/year and free Microsoft Office licences (this was before office 365, so it wasn’t a subscription).

Sometimes the cheap software is only for certain departments/majors but at mine they had several deeply discounted software packages any student could buy.”

2. Good one.

“Find the previous editions of your textbooks. Frequently they will be as cheap as $0.05.

If your professor pulls homework questions out of the current edition go to the library and use their reference copy just for the questions.

Although with a lot of the access codes needed these days it might not be possible.”

3. Worth a shot.

“Check with your grocery store to see if they have a student discount day.

15% off can go a long way.”

4. Give it a shot.

“To help organize notes and sources for papers and assignments, I highly recommend Zotero to help keep organized.

It also makes writing citations super easy.”

5. For the smart folks.

“For science/ stem people: Khan Academy videos.

They saved me several times.”

6. This right here.

“Please use your school’s on-campus mental health professionals.

They are easy to access, usually free, certified, and acutely aware of the stresses and issues with college life.”

7. All kinds of discounts.

“Student discounts. I’m sure someone else has already put this but I benefitted from it greatly.

As a music major, I had to buy a lot of different DAWs and equipment along my journey. Big corporations want you to buy their product, but are aware that you’re already digging yourself into a huge hole of debt so they often times will drop the price of a product by half or more to sell it to you.

For example, as a student you can get an Adobe membership for about $20 a month. I got a copy of Studio One 4 for $250 as opposed to $500 because I was a student. This also works if you’re not a student but want to make a large purchase.

Most sites don’t actually check to see if you’re a student so just jump thru some hoops and see where it gets you!”

8. Doing the Lord’s work.

“Church pantries.

Free groceries every week/every other week.

Just being proof you live in the area.”

9. Drink up!

“The grad student bar usually has cheap booze.

Art shows often have free booze.”

10. Very helpful.


Its a citation manager geared towards peer reviewed literature. It has a browser extension that downloads the pdf/ citation, and integrates with word. As you’re typing, you can add in text citations by searching for the author.

Then when you’re done, click add bibliography. Boom.. Done. Its made by elsevier. Once you use it, you’ll wonder why you ever added citation by hand/ one at a time.”

11. Might as well try.

“Fafsa, even if you don’t qualify, it’s still worth trying to get financial aid.

I only have to pay about $45 per class as opposed to $250.

Might look confusing and tedious initially, but after the first time the website usually saves your info and it only takes a few clicks to apply for the next year.”

12. Yes!

“LIBRARY CARD. This cannot be overstated enough.

Libraries are one of the only remaining establishments in which you are not compelled to spend money. It is FREE material. Free books, movies, magazines and periodicals, games, sometimes even technology!

Libraries are amazing. Some library cards even provide you access to online only materials.”

13. Get on it!


Basically college classes of various types taught online for free (you can pay for a certificate if you like, but you can access all the resources for free if you just want the knowledge).

The fun thing is the variety is huge and beyond the usual intro level stuff- for example, if you are past intro programming and like astronomy, there’s an excellent astronomy data science class I recommend to a lot of people.”

How about you?

Do you know of any good free or cheap resources that college students should know about?

If so, please share them with us in the comments. Thanks a lot!