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General Reserve Information

Course Reserves: How-to for Instructors

What do you want to do?


Create a new Reserve List

  1. Log in to the Reserve Processing System:

    Select "switch to instructor view" and then "create a course"

  2. Blackboard users: click YES at the system interface screen. Proceed to Blackboard and select the course you are teaching. Click Tools (left hand menu). Click Course Reserves - the Reserve processing System will open within your Blackboard window.  If you are a new reserves system user, you will be prompted to create an account (a one time process).

    Non-Blackboard users: click NO or MAYBE at the system interface screen and then click the Proceed button.  If you are a new user, you will be prompted to create an account (a one time process)

  3. Fill in the information about your course.  Select a library where your reserve books will be located.  Click create course.

Add items to a reserve list

Edit items on a reserve list

Reactivate (copy) an old reserve list


General Reserve Information


Books and other physical items may be placed on in-library reserve.  Electronic readings may be placed on e-reserve delivered through Blackboard.

Course reserve materials are intended solely for non-commercial, educational use. Library staff will make every effort to have all requested reserve items available as soon as possible.

To ensure availability for the first day of classes, all lists (paper and online) should be submitted by the following dates:

  • Fall semester:  August 3
  • Winter sessions:  December 1
  • Spring semester:  December 15
  • Summer session:  4 weeks before the start of the session


Information about in-library reserve

Reserve materials are held at a library's circulation desk or in a designated study room within the library.  (In some cases, study room reserves are unmoderated and can be used freely by the students in the class.)

  • Most libraries offer a choice of loan periods; 2-hour loan is standard, but the loan period can be adjusted to suit the needs of the class.
  • There is no limit on the number of items that may be placed on reserve, but please speak with the library's reserves coordinator if you need to place a very large number of books on reserve.
  • Number of copies to place on reserve: for non-textbook materials, the rule of thumb is to place one copy on reserve for every 20-25 students.  For textbooks and other materials that the students are required to purchase, 1 copy per 50 students.
  • Purchase requests: the library will accommodate purchase requests to the extent possible within budgetary constraints.  Please discuss your needs with the reserves coordinator.

Items that may be placed on reserve:

  • Items owned by Cornell Library: books, journals, videos, CD/DVDs, TakeNote, course packets, other materials.
  • Textbooks (supplied by the instructor or purchased by the library).  Upon request, the library will generally purchase up to 3 copies, or one copy per 50 students, whichever is less.
  • Legally obtained photocopies supplied by the instructor (please include the copyright statement)
  • Personal copies of books and other materials supplied by the instructor.
    • Please do not put irreplacable, fragile or very valuable personal materials on reserve.  The library assumes no liability for loss or damage.
    • The library places adhesive-backed barcodes on all items on reserve.  If you do not want your personal items barcoded, please speak with the reserves coordinator.  The library will create a covering or case for the material, and place a barcode on the covering.  Please allow extra time for processing.
    • Personal copies will be returned to you at the end of the term.

Items that may not be placed on reserve:

  • Materials owned by other institutions (no Interlibrary Loan or Borrow Direct items)
  • Copies of videos/CDs/DVDs that lack the permission of the copyright holder for this type of use
  • Rare books, fragile items


Information about Electronic Reserve

  • Items that may be placed on e-reserve: journal articles, book chapters, syllabi, practice exams, lecture notes and audio files.  Print items may be scanned and uploaded as PDF files, or linked to if they are available through the Library's licensed databases, or are open-access resources.
  • Electronic items must meet copyright Fair Use guidelines or have the permission of the copyright holder for this type of use.
  • Readings must be restricted to members of the class, and access must be terminated at the end of final exams.
  • Upon request, the library will assist instructors in scanning documents and creating links as allowed by the Electronic Course Content - Copyright Guidelines, or will upload readings to the instructor's Blackboard website. Please contact the library for assistance.
  • Reproduced (scanned or photocopied) materials should incude proper attribution and include the original work's copyright statement.  If no statement can be found, a standard statement of copyright protection may be used.
  • Course packets and excepts from course packets cannot be made available electronically without permission from the copyright holder.
    • However, course packet articles that are available through the Library's licensed databases are usually already licensed for reserve use and may be placed on e-reserve.
    • A physical copy of the course packet may be placed on in-library reserve.
  • For questions specifically dealing with electronic reserves for audio, the Music Library endoreses the Statement on the Digital Transmission of Audio Reserves issued by the Music Library Association.



Information about Blackboard processing:


Information about Copyright


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