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Teaching Resources: Course reserves

Reserve Services for Faculty

The Reserve Collection is an extension of the classroom in that it supports academic programs and includes:

  • material which is in great demand because it has been placed on course reading/watching lists
  • official University publications,
  • style manuals
  • periodicals and newspapers in great demand.

Course-related materials that may be placed on Reserve include:

  • notes and exams professors have made available for students' use
  • required readings (listed as such on the syllabus) from library books, instructor's personal copies, or photocopied materials
  • Audiovisual Materials
  • DVD/Blu Ray Discs
  • models

Materials that may not be placed on Reserve by instructors without special permission from appropriate library personnel (see Reserve Generalist) would be:

  • bound periodicals or individual unbound issues of periodicals owned by Owens Library
  • course required textbooks
  • reference books.

The Reserve Process:

Northwest faculty may place items on Reserve by completing a Reserve Request Form.

The information you list on this form should match its listing on your syllabus; this simple step will improve access for your students. The total number of items that may be placed on Reserve is 25 titles per trimester per instructor.

When professors place student-authored works on Reserve (such as research papers, resumes, completed assignments, models, charts, etc.), they will need to have each student author fill out a copy of the Release Form for Reserve Use of Student Projects.

Instructors may place materials on Reserve at any time during the trimester. Materials will be removed from the Reserve shelves at the end of the current trimester unless otherwise noted on the request form. They will then be de-processed and returned to the instructors and/or returned to the stacks (usually around the fourth week of the following trimester)


To renew a Reserve listing that was placed on Reserve for only one trimester you must notify the Reserve Specialist (email) before the start of the following trimester.


Please allow up to 5 working days for processing of materials before they will be available for checkout.


Faculty may add or remove items any time during the trimester. Please notify the Reserve Specialist ahead of time when you want to remove materials from Reserve, even if the materials are your own copies. Reserve items must be de-processed before they can be returned to you.

To update or review Reserve materials:

Faculty who need to look over or add to materials that they have placed on Reserve should see the Reserve Specialist. The Reserve Specialist can make arrangements to check the material out to you for an appropriate length of time.

Student Access:

A call number and your Bearcat ID are required to check out a Reserve item. Students may look up the call number on the library catalog by searching by instructor name or by course name under "Other Options." Students may then choose the item they want, write down the call number, and take it to the Library Services Desk to check out the item. Patrons will be charged 50 cents per hour for Reserve materials returned after the time due.


Faculty must provide their own photocopies to be placed on Reserve. Photocopies should have 1" margins and no large black areas. Instructors should note on the Reserve Request Form whether materials are required reading or suggested reading. The number of photocopies allowed will depend upon this. Only one copy will be placed on Reserve for suggested readings and one copy for every five students (up to a maximum of six copies) for required readings.

Copyright Permission:

Instructors are responsible for providing full bibliographic citations for every photocopied item so that the Reserve Specialist can apply for copyright clearance (see Copyright Permission below). Alternately, instructors may provide proof of secured permission to the Reserve Specialist. 

Loan Periods faculty may choose for Reserve items are as follows:

  • 2-Hour, In-library Use Only
    These items are checked out for 2 hours only and cannot leave the building.
  • 4-Hour, In-library Use Only 
    These items are checked out for 4 hours only and cannot leave the building.
  • Overnight 
    These items can be checked out anytime during the day and are due back before the library closes on the next day.
  • 3-Day 
    Items can be checked out anytime during the day and are due back before the library closes on the 3rd day.
  • 7-Day 
    Items can be checked out anytime during the day and are due back before the library closes on the 7th day.


Questions about Course Reserves? Call (660) 562-1193 or email.

Copyright and Course Reserves

Reserve Uses
Faculty may place photocopied works on reserve for the convenience of students in preparing class assignments. A limited number of copies per article will be placed on Reserve the first trimester that you use it (effective Fall 1992). However, for the same material to be placed on Reserve for any following trimesters, copyright permission must be obtained. If the Reserve Specialist is unable to acquire permission via the Copyright Clearance Center, you are responsible for obtaining permission and providing proof of permission to the Reserve Specialist before photocopies will be placed on Reserve.

Multiple copies may be placed on reserve within the following Fair Use guidelines:

  • The amount of material should be reasonable in relation to the total amount of material assigned for one term of a course. (In other words, not all of the course reading material should be reserve readings.) There is no exact allowable measure; quantity must be evaluated in each circumstance.
  • The number of copies should be reasonable in light of the number of students enrolled, the difficulty and timing of assignments, and the number of other courses which may assign the same materials (the maximum is 6 copies per article).
  • The material should contain a notice of copyright (we have a copyright stamp available).
  • The effect of photocopying the material should not be detrimental to the market for the work. (In general, the library should own at least one copy of the work.)

Photocopies may be put on reserve “spontaneously.”
This means that:

  • The copying is done at the instance and inspiration of the individual teacher; and
  • The inspiration and decision to use the work and the moment of its utility is so close that it would be unreasonable to expect a timely reply to a request for permission.

To use photocopies for successive years, permission must be obtained from the owner of the copyright. Please see the Fair Use Questionnaire to help determine if use of a copyrighted source falls under educational fair use guidelines.


B.D. Owens Library Course Reserves Specialist
Courtney Gard 

For further information visit Copyright Permission

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