Frequently Asked Questions

What are textbook reservations?
You choose the books you want to purchase and reserve them through the Textbook link on the Bookstore's website. We will hold your prepaid order for pickup at the start of each term. Reservation and pickup timeframes will be noted on the site prior to each semester. This service will not be available for summer courses.

Why should I reserve my textbooks? There are several advantages to reserving textbooks through your Bookstore site. First, used copies of textbooks are available on a first-come-first-served basis. By reserving your selections early you are assured of the best possible opportunity to secure a used or rental title at a significant savings. Secondly, reserving books eliminates the need to 'endure the crowd' as you scan the shelves for your books and stand in line to pay. Thirdly, should there be a need to return a selection, the process is abbreviated and, once again, eliminates the need to stand in textbook and register lines. Fourthly, you are guaranteed to receive the correct edition and, if the professor alters the book list at the last minute, your Bookstore ensures that you will receive the new selection and gladly refund your money for the replaced title. Other online services often are unable or unwilling to provide this service. Fifthly, a number of courses offer options when selecting textbooks and frequently students purchase books that are not necessary. Your Bookstore staff will edit online orders and eliminate unnecessary purchases prior to finalizing the order.

When can I reserve my books? The textbook reservation function will be activated approximately 2-3 weeks before the start of each term and deactivated promptly at 12:00 PM one business day prior to first-year orientation during fall semesters and one business day prior to the start of classes for spring semesters. If your cart has not been checked out by the time sales are deactivated the sale will not be processed and the books will not be reserved. For spring 2016, reservations will begin on January 6th at 8:00 AM and end at 12:00 PM on January 21st.

How do I participate? It's simple. Log on to and click on the Textbook link. Click on the current semester term, i.e. Fall 2015. Have your course schedule handy. Click on the course name, then the course number and finally the course section/professor to find your courses. Repeat this process until you have identified all your courses for which you are buying books. To the right of this selection list you will see the statement 'Find Books For These Courses'. Click on this and the list of books will appear by course/section. You can individually select the books (by condition: new,used or rental) you wish to purchase by placing a check mark in the add box, or you can opt to select all books by category (required, recommended, optional, all or none) by clicking on the desired option. When selection is completed, click on 'Add These Books To My Cart'. Proceed to checkout and select method of payment (student charge, VISA, MasterCard or Discover). Note: The advantage of using your student charge is that a purchase can be readily verified should you lose your receipt, which is required for all returns. If you have shopped our site previously, just sign in. If not, create a new account or sign in as a guest. Complete the billing information and select Holland Union Building as the shipping address (textbook purchases will not be shipped; all orders must be picked up at the Bookstore). If a parent enters the order and notes his/her name as the billing name, please make sure the student's name appears as the "ship to" name. This will help us to identify the student during the pickup period. In the event the book condition you ordered is no longer available we will substitute a book of another condition. As an example, if you ordered a used biology book and used copies are no longer available a new copy will be added to your order at the new book cost and the used book will be removed. You may add notes for the Bookstore staff if you wish. Complete payment information. Click 'Place Order'. The process is complete. We will hold your prepaid books for pickup during a specified period at the start of each term (PLEASE NOTE: Reservations are NOT available for summer courses).

Can I buy used books using textbook reservations? Absolutely! As long as we have used copies in stock, you may purchase and reserve them. Keep in mind that these are sold on a first-come-first-served basis. It is possible that multiple shoppers could have the same used book in their cart at the same time. We pull the orders in timestamp order so as to prioritize those who checked out first. Therefore, if a used copy is not available at the time your order is picked, a new copy will be substituted (if available) which will cause your total cost to increase.

Can I rent titles using textbook reservations? Yes! We introduced the rental option during the Fall 2012 semester and will continue to offer this option when ordering through the online reservation system. Please note that if used /new copies of a title are out-of-stock the tile cannot be rented even though it appears as an option.

What do the various 'book status' descriptions mean? Following the ISBN of each title you will notice a book status description, including required, recommended, optional and choice. Required indicates the title is a must read for the class. Recommended implies the professor prefers the title be read for the class. Optional titles may be read as a supplement at the discretion of the student. Choice is often misinterpreted and is often used in language courses. In such courses a textbook and an online access code, or Quia, are required. Should you need both the text and the Quia then you should choose the combination package. If you currently own the text and only need the Quia, select the Quia only, etc. Required and optional are the most common status assignments.

What do I do if my book is listed as "Out of Stock"? The online textbook reservation system will only allow you to select a book that is in stock with an on-hand quantity. Should you see the message "Out of Stock" it means there are no copies of that title in stock, thereby not allowing you to reserve that title. Note: a title may be out of stock for new copies but have available stock for used copies (the reverse may be true as well). Be sure to view both new and used options when ordering. No available stock could be the result of several things. All copies of a particular title may have been sold or rented already. Additionally, if a title(s) did not arrive before we activated the reservation function it will indicate that title as "Out of Stock". This occurs when professors adopt their books late, shipping delays or if the course requires lab manuals and course packets printed on campus. Our system does not allow backordering so you can either revisit the online site (as a title is received it becomes available for online purchase) or you may purchase these books from the Bookstore Textbook Section after you arrive on campus.

Can I add to my cart and checkout at another time? If you have items in your cart but leave the website before finalizing your purchase, the contents in your cart will be automatically saved. Upon returning to the website, you may complete your transaction. IMPORTANT NOTE: Even though your cart contents will be saved, once the textbook reservation function is deactivated (see 'When can I reserve my books' FAQ) you will no longer be able to finalize your purchase online. Consequently, you will need to come to the Bookstore Textbook Section, pull your books from the shelves and pay at the register.

What happens if I accidently chose the wrong book or changed classes? Once you provide payment information and checkout, your order cannot be changed online. However, you may change the contents of your cart at any point before you checkout. You may place a second order, if need be, and return any incorrect books at the Bookstore Textbook Section with your web invoice when you pick up your reservation order. Or, if you wish to resolve the issue prior to arriving on campus, you may contact Neil Sanders at the Bookstore. If your order has not been processed by a Bookstore staff member, an adjustment can be made to properly reflect your desired books. Please note: most orders are processed within two days of order placement. If the order has been processed by the staff, please refer to the opening statements of this FAQ.

What do I need to bring with me to pickup my order? Ideally, two things: (1) a printed copy of your web order confirmation (print at checkout or print from follow-up e-mail) and (2) a valid student ID. Books will not be released without a student ID. Note: For the security of our valued customers, we reserve the right to deny pickup if adequate proof is not provided.

Where do I pickup my order? The pickup location will be in the rear of the Bookstore to the left of the Textbook Section.

When can I pickup my order? The pickup dates for spring 2016 will commence at 8:00 AM on January 22nd. All orders not picked up by the end of the first week of classes will be returned to stock unless prior arrangements have been made. Pickup hours coincide with Bookstore hours.

Who may I contact if I experience a problem while ordering? Contact Neil Sanders at (717) 245-1389 or toll free, 1-(800) 582-5436; or email It is our sincere desire that this reservation process be a positive experience for students, parents and the Bookstore staff.

Dickinson College Bookstore
28 North College St
Holland Union Bldg.
Carlisle, PA
Phone: 717-245-1330
Fax: 717-254-8874
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