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Library Course Reserves

Course Reserves FAQs

Why does the library mediate reserve requests?

The MSOE library mediates reserve requests in order to determine if the request complies with fair use guidelines. Best practice recommendations and/or alternatives to library reserves may be presented.

What resources does the MSOE Library use to evaluate reserve requests in order to determine a fair use analysis?

The library refers to the following resources to assess reserve requests:

What may be placed on Reserve?

  • Published books (a faculty member's personal copy or books owned by the library may be used)
  • A photocopy of a single chapter or a small portion of a book
  • Videos or DVDs
  • Articles from journals, magazines, or serials
  • Materials created by a faculty member
  • Current news articles from newspapers or news periodicals

Are there items that may not be placed on Reserve?

  • Since reserves are meant to supplement course material, textbooks and/or course-packs that take the place of a main text may not be placed on reserve.
  • Copies of entire books or periodicals cannot be placed on reserve.
  • Articles obtained via Interlibrary Loan cannot be placed on reserve.
  • Copyright-protected materials may not be placed on reserve during consecutive quarters unless permission has been obtained in writing from the copyright holder or unless the appropriate licensing has been purchased. Materials not protected by copyright may be repeatedly placed on reserve.

Can I request articles or ebooks from library databases for electronic reserves?

While the library does not provide ereserves directly, we can assist instructors in generating links to digital library materials that may be placed in Canvas courses or shared electronically with students through other methods.

How many items can I have on Reserve?

  • Copyright-protected materials – A total of 9 items, in any combination (4 books, 3 articles, 2 videos = 9 items)
  • Non-copyrighted materials – Unlimited

Can I use course reserves to replace a textbook for my course?

No, course reserves are supplemental and must not take the place of a purchased textbook or course-pack.

Do I need to fill out a reserve request form each quarter?

Yes, we need to maintain records of all items placed on reserves. Please fill out a Print Reserves Request Form.

Can I make my own reserve area on my personal website or on Canvas?

Whether or not other materials can be placed on a personal website or on Canvas depends on the copyright status of the materials – feel free to contact the Library for guidance. Generally:

  • Copyright-protected materials may not be placed on a personal website or on Canvas.
  • Materials created by the faculty member (course notes, practice sets, etc.) may be placed on a personal website or on Canvas.


Why is the library allowed to place copyrighted materials on reserve?

As a not-for-profit educational institution the library enjoys an explicit right under Section 108 of Title 17, US Copyright Law, to make in-copyright items available through electronic reserves.