Used Tabers (20th edition) vs. New Tabers (21st edition)

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  • Specializes in Interested in ER, Flight Nursing.

I'm starting NS in the Fall and have begun the search for books online.

One of my required texts is a Tabers. I have found a few of the 20th editions online for SO cheap!

Does anyone have any opinion on how much changed between the 20th and (most recent) 21st editions?

I know many textbooks throw out new editions every couple years and simply switch some chapters around and move some illustrations.

Would it be possible to get by with the 20th edition? ...or is it truly worth it to cash out for the newest edition?

Thanks for your input!!


217 Posts

Considering this is a dictionary and words don't tend to go out of fashion for awhile I think you would be fine with the 20th edition. It's only 4 years old and I can't imagine that very many new terms have been added. For things that have changed a simple Google search would suffice. I really doubt any professor would drastically alter their previous curriculum for the ever minuscule and superficial changes that are brought with each new edition.

Personally I ONLY buy previous editions of textbooks (when possible) to save money. I have never found myself at a disadvantage or completely lost on any topic for a class and my grades reflect this.

But it's really up to you and where your comfort zone is.


80 Posts

Specializes in Med-Surg/Ortho, Telemetry.

I had bought the 20th edition of Tabers, but I never even used it! I relied mostly on the internet to look up quick definitions or my other nursing books, so I would definitely buy the previous edition to save money. Buying nursing textbooks adds up, so saving where ever you can is good. lol, heck, I'd even send you mine for the cost of shipping just to get rid of it.


411 Posts

I was wondering the same thing about Taber's. Most of my books are previous editions anyway. The 20th edition is very cheap on amazon.


73 Posts

I'd almost not bother getting a the PP said, I'm online to find definitions.


2,642 Posts

I almost never use my physical Tabers....but I did use my online Tabers multiple times every day. I even used it in lectures to define words that were used....oh and then I could copy & paste the definition right into my notes. It was well worth the cash.


26 Posts

Specializes in Interested in ER, Flight Nursing.

Thank you so much for all your input. I really appreciate it!


411 Posts

I have a Merriam-Websters medial dictionary at home- can I use that instead of getting the Tabers? Is there a difference?

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