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Course Reserve

Finding Course Materials in the Library

Reserves are books and materials placed on non-circulating or short-term loan periods at an instructor’s request so that all students in the class may have an opportunity to read or review the material. Most of these materials are non-circulating and shelved on the class reserve area around the circulation desk. . Members of the faculty, administration, or library staff can reserve the materials by completing the Instructor Course Reserve form.

The purpose of a reserve collection is to:

  1. Support the needs of a group of patrons. The group is usually an Olivet class but may also be a special seminar or another unit within Olivet University, such as a college;
  2. Provide timely, convenient, and efficient access to high-demand materials;
  3. Protect materials that are at a high risk of theft or vandalism.

Several of the general principles that govern the acquisition of materials for the Ralph D. Winter Library system support the use of the material in the course reserve system. In particular:

  • All collections in Ralph D. Winter Library, regardless of format, are acquired by the University for nonprofit educational purposes by students, staff, faculty, and authorized users.
  • All library materials are acquired with the understanding that there will be multiple uses made of the item.

The Library’s course reserve systems are a traditional library service that will be provided in a manner that respects the rights of copyright holders and the limitations to those rights as specified in current copyright law.

General Course Reserve Copyright Guidelines

Ralph D. Winter Library guidelines on copying for course reserve reading services derive from the fair use provisions of the copyright law of the United States as found in Section 107 of Title 17 of the United States Code. Section 107 expressly permits the making of multiple copies for classroom use under certain circumstances. Such educational copying is one of the six illustrative examples of acceptable fair use given in the section. The text of Section 107 is:

Notwithstanding the provisions of sections 106 and 106A, the fair use of a copyrighted work, including such use by reproduction in copies, phonorecords or by any other means specified in that section, for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship or research, is not an infringement of copyright. In determining whether the use made of a work in any particular case is a fair use the factors to be considered shall include:

  1. the purpose and character of the use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for nonprofit educational purposes;
  2. the nature of the copyrighted work;
  3. the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and
  4. the effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

The fact that a work is unpublished shall not itself bar a finding of fair use if such finding is made upon consideration of all the above factors.

The Library reserves the right to refuse to place on course reserve any material that it feels may violate these copyright guidelines.

Specific Course Reserve Copyright Guidelines

  1. Materials will only be placed on reserve at the request of the course teacher. Course reserve materials are meant exclusively for non-commercial, educational use.
  2. Only legally acquired material may become part of the course reserve system. Typically this includes material that the library has obtained or authorized as well as material the instructor gives.
  3. Only a small amount of any copyrighted work (i.e., a section from a book, one article from an issue of a journal, a few charts, graphs or illustrations, or other little parts of a work) may be duplicated for the reserve system without the consent of the copyright owner.
  4. Neither excerpts from nor an entire assigned course packets will be made available electronically without the permission of the copyright owner. Note that items that are available in library-licensed electronic resources normally include the required permission. A physical copy of the course packet can be placed on in-library reserve.
  5. The Library will not charge for access to reserve materials, nor will it sell photocopies, printouts, or copies of reserve materials.
  6. Reproduced course materials should include proper attribution and retain copyright notices. Therefore, the first page on each reserve item should include the notice of copyright that is found in the original item. When no such notice can be found, a legend stating that the work may be protected by copyright can be used.
  7. Reproduced materials on reserve will be accessible only by instructor name, course name and college name.
  8. In order to view materials in the electronic course reserve system, users will be required to enter an Olivet ID number and have an active record in the Library patron database.
  9. For questions specifically dealing with electronic reserves for audio, the Media Library endorses the Statement on the Digital Transmission of Electronic Reserves issued by the Music Library Association.

Faculty Course Reserves

Reserve Information

Course reserves are materials (including books, journal articles and/or photocopies, electronic resources, instructional equipment and non-book items) chosen by the instructors to support class instruction. The materials are maintained in a different section within a library or are made available electronically as e-reserves, and access to the material is more restricted than for items in general circulation.


The Faculty will:

  1. Determine the content of a reserve list.
  2. Submit reserve requests in a timely manner.
  3. Submit a reserve list to one library only. Exceptions to the no-duplication rule can be made when circumstances warrant it.
  4. Comply with OU course reserve guidelines, and indicate on the reserve form that they are in compliance.
  5. Obtain permission of the copyright owner for material that does not comply with OU course reserve guidelines.
  6. Maintain the currency and integrity of lecture notes, problem sets, readings or other faculty-provided items that may be subject to damage or loss through patron usage.
  7. Make arrangements with the library for the disposition or return of personal copy items.
  8. Provide protective binders or cases for personally owned materials if the library requests it.
  9. Recognize that there is an inherent risk in placing personal copies on reserve, and not hold the library responsible for any subsequent loss or damage.

The Library will:

  1. Strive to accommodate all faculty requests insofar as budgetary and staff resources allow. The library may be proactive in recommending more current editions or alternate titles, and may recommend the number of copies necessary for a requested title.
  2. Process all reserve requests as soon as possible after receipt of the list.
  3. Communicate with the faculty in a timely manner regarding the status of ordered materials, or other items that are not expected to be available when needed by the students.
  4. Inform the faculty of any other problems that affect accessibility of requested reserve materials.
  5. Look for items on the reserve request form that faculty have indicated may not be in compliance with OU course reserve guidelines. Items that exceed the guidelines ordinarily will not be made available on reserve.
  6. Only place on reserve items that faculty have identified as being included in course packets when either those items are available in CUL-licensed electronic resources or when permission of the copyright holder has been secured.
  7. Process reserve lists in order of receipt.
  8. Contact faculty regarding material that seems to be in high demand for a course, but is not included on a reserve list.
  9. Provide feedback to faculty about reserve usage upon request. The library will not divulge patron information in connection with usage feedback.
  10. Terms Used on the Reserve Forms

Reserve Location

Each library provides reserve services for the courses in the colleges or departments for which it has primary collection responsibility. Please contact the appropriate library if circumstances warrant placing materials on reserve at different or multiple libraries.

Type of Reserve/Format of Item

Electronic Reserve (e-reserve) – Typically journal articles, book chapters, syllabi, practice exams, etc. will be placed on e-reserve either as links to licensed resources or as PDF files. In-library Reserve – Books, Take Note, course packets, videos, DVDs, etc. are held at the library’s circulation or reserve desk or are shelved in a separate location for ease of use. Legally made photocopies provided by faculty can also placed on in-library reserve.

Call Number/Purchase/Supply

If material is unavailable from any Ralph D. Winter Library, it will either need to be supplied by the instructor or purchased by the library. It may take several weeks or more for the library to obtain materials. Material supplied by the instructor will be returned at the end of the quarter.

The library is not responsible for damage to personal material placed on reserve. Submitting items for scanning - If permitted by the OU course reserve guidelines, the library can scan material for electronic reserve. Materials must be clear and readable with no black margins, on 8 1/2' x 11' paper, single-sided, and free of staples. Submitting PDF files - If permitted by the OU course reserve guidelines, documents that are already in PDF format may be submitted for course reserve as an e-mail attachment. You will still need to complete a reserve request form.

Loan Period

Most libraries offer a range of loan periods to suit the needs of the instructor. Typically, print or other physical materials will be placed on 2-hour reserve.

Number of Copies

The Library uses a guideline of one copy of a title for students for items on in-library reserve.

Date Needed By

The library will make every effort to have all requested items available as soon as possible. In order to provide equal service to everyone, reserve lists will be processed in order of receipt. There is frequently a backlog of requests to process, especially at the beginning of the quarter. By indicating the date needed, the library may prioritize the most important materials on a particular list to better meet the course needs.

Remember that some material can only be placed on reserve with the permission of the copyright owner. It can take four weeks or longer to secure permission. You should account for time to secure permission when calculating your time.

Library Hours

Monday 7:00 am – 8:00 pm PST
Tuesday 7:00 am – 8:00 pm PST
Wednesday 7:00 am – 5:00 pm PST
Thursday 7:00 am – 8:00 pm PST
Friday 7:00 am – 5:00 pm PST
Saturday 8:00 am – 5:00 pm PST
Sunday Closed


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