I am not sure whether the following would be an acceptable soft-question, needs rewording, or should go to another site.

Most mathematics and computer science textbooks I read have exercises for the reader. Some make answers (e.g. to odd questions) readily available to the reader, however, many others classify solutions as "instructor resources" and do not make these available to the reader. For example, I'm reading Probabilistic and Graphical Models, but I do not know where to find the answers to the chapter exercises.

I am studying a textbook outside of a course (that is, without an instructor), and was wondering if there exists a "legit" method of obtaining textbook solutions. I might guess that the "instructor resources" designation is to prevent students from cheating, so there is no solution to this problem. Still, if someone know of how to do this, it would help their readers that are studying without instruction.

  • $\begingroup$ This sort of question may be a better fit for Academia.SE, but I don't really know. (I'm not a part of that SE community...) Just throwing that out there. $\endgroup$
    – apnorton
    Jul 23 '13 at 2:39
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    $\begingroup$ I don't think such a question would be useful. There are specialized sites for collecting links to downloadable books (legal or otherwise), such as ebookee dot org. If you don't see what you are looking for there, MSE won't help either. $\endgroup$
    – 40 votes
    Jul 23 '13 at 2:52
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    $\begingroup$ I agree that MSE is not the place for collecting links. Transient download links wouldn't be a good answer anyway. The question is asking how can a reader review the answers to exercises in the absence of an instructor. E-mailing the authors is the one possibility I thought of, but it's unlikely I'd get an affirmative response. $\endgroup$
    – T. Webster
    Jul 23 '13 at 5:23
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    $\begingroup$ I think this question is suitable for MSE. Although the answer will probably be "Ask your questions here!". Also, I wouldn't worry about trying to get your answers to the questions perfectly correct - good questions are designed to make you think about the content. Your actual answer is kinda irrelevant (although I understand that it is nice to know the answer if you get stuck!). $\endgroup$
    – user1729
    Jul 23 '13 at 9:45
  • $\begingroup$ This is the correct answer I didn't think of. $\endgroup$
    – T. Webster
    Jul 23 '13 at 22:54

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