I've recently watched all of the Harry Potter movies. I was really excited by them.

But I had one question - which has nearly nothing to do with the concept: What kinds of books and lessons would be used at Hogwarts?

I mean sure they learn about magic but they are also taught about magical creatures, e.g.:

  • Hippogryphs by Hagrid, and
  • Werewolves by Severus Snape

They also learn how to make potions etc.

I would also like to see some sort of illustrations, other than what is shown in the movies. For example the book "The Resurrectionist" contains beautifully illustrated pictures of anatomy of magical creatures such as Mermaids, Sphinxes etc.

Are there similar (text-book style) books in the Harry Potter universe?


Book lists are one thing that Harry Potter Wikia is good at.

  1. Overall list of books:


    That list - especially relevant to your question - contains a gazillion Magical Creatures books.

  2. Specifically Hogwarts textbooks (except for Year 7 that we don't know about since Harry didn't attend):


1st year:

The Standard Book of Spells (Grade 1) by Miranda Goshawk
A History of Magic by Bathilda Bagshot
Magical Theory by Adalbert Waffling
A Beginner's Guide to Transfiguration by Emeric Switch
One Thousand Magical Herbs and Fungi by Phyllida Spore
Magical Drafts and Potions by Arsenius Jigger
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by Newt Scamander
The Dark Forces: A Guide to Self-Protection by Quentin Trimble 

Second year students will require:

The Standard Book of Spells (Grade 2) by Miranda Goshawk
Break with a Banshee by Gilderoy Lockhart
Gadding with Ghouls by Gilderoy Lockhart
Holidays with Hags by Gilderoy Lockhart
Travels with Trolls by Gilderoy Lockhart
Voyages with Vampires by Gilderoy Lockhart
Wanderings with Werewolves by Gilderoy Lockhart
Year with the Yeti by Gilderoy Lockhart 

Third year students will require:

The Standard Book of Spells (Grade 3) by Miranda Goshawk
Unfogging the Future by Cassandra Vablatsky (if attending Divination)
Intermediate Transfiguration by Emeric Switch
The Monster Book of Monsters (if attending Care of Magical Creatures)
Numerology and Grammatica (if attending Arithmancy)
Home Life and Social Habits of British Muggles by Wilhelm Wigworthy (if attending Muggle Studies)
Spellman's Syllabary (if attending Study of Ancient Runes)
The Essential Defence Against the Dark Arts by Arsenius Jigger 

Fourth year students will require:

Dress Robes (only for special occasions that will occur through the year)
The Standard Book of Spells (Grade 4) by Miranda Goshawk
The Dark Forces: A Guide to Self-Protection 

Fifth year

The Standard Book of Spells (Grade 5) by Miranda Goshawk
Defensive Magical Theory by Wilbert Slinkhard 

Sixth year

The Standard Book of Spells (Grade 6) by Miranda Goshawk
Advanced Potion-Making by Libatius Borage
Confronting the Faceless
A Guide to Advanced Transfiguration by Emeric Switch
Advanced Rune Translation
Flesh-Eating Trees of the World 
  • Lockhart's collected works and arugably any book for DADA is not necessarily for that year, but rather what the then current DADA teacher, who never lasts more than a year, prescribes. As opposed to The Standard Book of Spells, which seems like such a standard work that students might as well buy the entire series right away. – SQB Feb 6 '15 at 9:15

Students at Hogwarts study a variety of different subjects, each with it's own textbook(s). Several of them were named in the books and described to some degree. The following are compulsory subjects:

  • Potions: Where students learn how to create various magical potions.
  • Transfiguration: Changing the shape of objects.
  • Defense Against the Dark Arts: How to defend oneself against dark magic.
  • Charms: How to use incantations and bewitchment.
  • Astronomy: Pretty obvious.
  • Herbology: The use and care of magical plants.
  • History of Magic: The history of the magical world and its wizards and witches.
  • Flying: How to fly using a broom.

Hogwarts students are also required to take two more elective subjects from the following list:

  • Arithmancy: Magical properties of numbers.
  • Muggle Studies: The non-magical world and its culture.
  • Divination: Foretelling the future.
  • Study of Ancient Runes: Studying ancient runic scripts.
  • Care of Magical Creatures: The study and care of magical creatures such as hippogriphs and dragons.

Incidentally, JK Rowling has written and published the actual textbook used for Care of Magical Creatures. A book entitled "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them", which is available for sale with proceeds going to charity.

  • 1
    +1 on Fantastic Beasts, I think this is along the lines of what the OP is looking for! – Möoz Sep 30 '14 at 21:53
  • Isn't Advanced Potion Making also available as an in-universe textbook? – ZenLogic Oct 1 '14 at 11:18
  • @ZenLogic - Not that I know of, but I could be wrong. – System Down Oct 1 '14 at 15:58

Harry Potter and his fellow Hogwarts students use a number of books during their school years. They usually received a list of books to buy at Flourish and Blotts, the bookstore in Diagon Alley, before the next year began.

I can't give an exhaustive list, but I'll name some highlights.

A standard work is The Standard Book of Spells series, written by Miranda Goshawk. It consists of seven books, one for each year at Hogwarts. Another standard textbook was Advanced Potion-Making by Libatius Borage, for their Potions class.

Due to the unfortunate circumstances surrounding the teacher for Defence Against the Dark Arts, they had to buy a new book for that almost every year. These included The Essential Defence Against the Dark Arts, Confronting the Faceless, The Dark Forces: A Guide to Self-Protection, but also the collected works of Gilderoy Lockhart in the year that he taught the class.

When Hagrid taught Care of Magical Creatures, he used The Monster Book of Monsters by Edwardus Lima. It is an aggressive textbook that attacks anyone who attempts to open it. The only way to get it to open is to stroke its spine.

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