Textbooks should not be a Luxury

Two in five undergraduates in England from lower-income households have had to cut back on textbooks because of financial pressures, while accumulating average debts of £44,000 and rising.  In comparison, many of us got a university education for free, often with significant grant support along the way. We believe this contrast is glaring…

Let’s do something about it

...but importantly we believe we can do something about it.  The Reading List Foundation exists to inspire people - including older graduates - to help fund a younger student’s First Year textbooks, providing practical, financial and emotional help.

“I was able to purchase medical books that I would otherwise not have afforded, which has served me well in assignments and exam preparations. Equally as important, I entered university with a positivity I may not have had.”

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£125 Billion

Approximate value of tuition enjoyed for free by pre-tuition fee graduates in England


Proportion of this it would take to offer a scholarship in every Year 13 in England

Support a student’s future, today

We ask our donors to fund or co-fund £250 Scholarships for high-achieving students from lower-income households, to cover their Reading List in their first year of university.  We encourage donors to make their contribution personal – for instance directing it to their old school or college.

Make a Donation


We’re pleased to be able to share our latest annual survey of Scholarship winners, which we hope helps describe the impact our Scholarships have on the students who win them. We can’t help but feel for the students who had to spend close to £100 on one textbook….

2019 report

Below is a heartfelt thank you everyone who has supported us in 2018. We look forward to bigger and better things in 2019.

Online thank you

Thanks to a wonderful past year, we’ve been able to support 102 Scholarships this summer, in 87 schools and colleges across England. You can see our growth in the dots on the map above (and compare to this time last year in our previous post). Thank you!