Book buying and degree results

‘Students who buy more books achieve better degree results, a study has found. Researchers at the University of East London tracked the expenditure of almost 5,500 undergraduates at its campus bookshops over the three years of their studies.

Students who gained a first-class degree [=cum laude in the Netherlands]  spent an average of £239 on books – almost two-thirds more than the £146 spent by those who later received a third-class degree [=6]. Those who received an upper second spent £205 on books, while those getting a 2:2 [=6.5/7] spent just £179.

A smaller study at Anglia Ruskin University, which analysed spending by 479 students, demonstrated a similar correlation between book spend and academic achievement.’

More details at: Times Higher Education – Degree results speak volumes.


  • correlation is not the same as causality
  • we are not told what subjects were involved in the studys
  • of course the article is not suggesting that the finding apply to everyone. There will be people who spent a fortune on books who failed their exams and others who bought almost nothing and got high marks.