Course Reserve Guidelines

Course reserves make it possible for instructors to reserve one or more copies of a book or DVD at the circulation desk in order to share them with the students currently taking their course.

Reserve items may be provided by the instructor out of their own personal collection, or they may be selected from the university-owned collection housed at Pearson Library. Whatever the source, all course reserve materials must be made available within the provisions and constraints of copyright law.

  1. An online course reserve form must be submitted for all items to be placed on course reserve.
  2. Course reserve items provided by instructors from their personal collection will be barcoded and tagged. Every attempt will be made to apply both barcodes and tags in a manner that allows for easy removal by the instructor. We cannot, however, guarantee that barcodes and tags will be easily or entirely removed.
  3. All reserve items will be taken off of reserve at the end of each semester and an attempt will be made to return them to the instructor via campus mail. To ensure that the reserve shelf is up-to-date, instructors must contact staff at least one week prior to the end of the semester if they wish to extend the reserve on an item for an additional semester. If you wish to make other pick-up arrangements, please specify this on the reserve form or contact us at least one week prior to the “take off reserve” date you have specified on the reserve form, or by the end of the semester, whichever is sooner.
  4. Articles and photocopies may not be placed on course reserve. If you wish to share journal articles with students, please review copyright law and post appropriate materials via Blackboard.
  5. Course reserves listings can be searched by keyword, course number, course name, faculty name, or item title by searching the library's online catalog. Faculty can also choose to make their course reserve lists available to their students on Blackboard.
Copyright: A Quick Review for Faculty Sharing Materials with Students

Guidelines for electronic reserves are based on the Fair Use provisions of the U.S. Copyright Act of 1976, Section 107, and on the draft Electronic Reserves Guidelines that were developed during the Conference on Fair Use (CONFU) 1994 - 1998.

Generally speaking, the following guidelines should be followed when making multiple copies or distributing digital copies of copyrighted material under “fair use:”

  • Distribution is limited to nine spontaneous instances per course per semester. Spontaneous means the material was encountered one to two days before it is used so obtaining permission would be difficult and interrupt the spontaneous nature of teaching.
  • The complete citation and notice of copyright for the material (whether hard copy or digital copy) must included on/in the document.
  • An article, book, or other copyrighted work may only be used one time in one course before requesting permission to use it again in another course.
  • No more than three journal articles or essays may be used from one issue/volume.
  • No more than one chart, graph, diagram, drawing, cartoon or picture per book or per periodical issue
  • No more than 10% of a book may be copied and distributed in print or digitally or an essay, article, or story within a book of 2,500 words or less.
  • Not more than one short poem, article, story, essay or two excerpts may be copied from the same author.
  • A poem less than 250 words may be duplicated or shared in digital format.
  • For longer poems, only 250 words may be duplicated in print or distributed in digital format. 

Learn more about copyright at Cal Lutheran.

For additional information on U.S. Copyright Law, see the U.S. Copyright Office website.