Course Reserves


Course Reserves are materials set aside by an instructor for a short loan period to ensure every student in their course has a fair opportunity to access assigned readings.


For Students

There are two kinds of course reserves: Print Reserve and eReserve.


Print Reserve

This is where you will find physical items like books and DVDs. To borrow a Print Reserve, go to the Library Circulation Desk (4th Floor, Centennial Hall) with your student card and ask for the call number of the item you are looking for.



This is where you will find short excerpts and other digital items like ebooks. To access eReserves, login to the Ares Reserves System with your Webadvisor username and password. If your instructor uses Nexus, you can also login to your course page and view eReserves under the “ReserveReadings” tab. Some instructors will also put eReserves in the “Content” tab.



For Instructors

Faculty and instructors are responsible for ensuring that course materials meet copyright guidelines. Items may be placed on reserve through either the self-service or Syllabus Service models. The easiest way to ensure copyright compliance is to submit your course readings through the Ares Reserves System or the Syllabus Service before posting to Nexus.


*NEW!* Syllabus Service

Submit your reading list directly to Reserves, and let expert library staff take care of copyright clearance and material processing. Visit our Syllabus Service page for details.



Both digital and print reserves can be created through Ares, which can be accessed directly or through the “ReserveReadings” tab on your Nexus course page. For detailed instruction regarding how to place items on reserve, please refer to the Course Reserves Instructor Manual.  

For Winter 2018, please use the semester code 2018/2019W.


Personal Copies

You are welcome to provide a personal copy for use as a reserve. Please drop off the material at the circulation desk with the completed form. Personal copies will be returned in August unless otherwise specified.

The Library treats all personal copies with the same respect and care as library holdings. However, please note that the Library assumes no responsibility for damage to or loss of personal copies.


Processing Time

Reserve submissions are processed on a first-come, first-served basis. There is a delay when processing through Ares, so please allow at least one day for your materials to be made available.

During peak periods (2-4 weeks before the start of the semester), processing time increases to 3-5 days. If you’ve requested scanning services or used the Syllabus Service, anticipate at least 2 more days of processing time.


Supply Options

It is up to faculty and instructors to ensure the material they are placing on course reserve is available. If the item is not owned by the library and you are not providing a personal copy, you have two options:


Contact your subject librarian to request a purchase. In some cases, it can take several months for a new acquisition to be processed, so submit this request as early as possible.


If you only require an excerpt of a larger work, ask Reserves staff to bring the material in through interlibrary loan and they’ll create a scan for you. ILL requests can take up to three weeks, so be sure to plan accordingly.


Acceptable Formats & Best Practices

Note that shorter readings (articles, chapters, etc.) may only be placed on eReserve.

Print books and A/V materials (DVDs, CDs, etc.) are placed on print reserve.

Links and PDFs are placed on eReserve (Ares/Nexus). Please note that PDF is the only acceptable format for written documents placed on eReserve. Media such as images, videos, and music will be handled on a case-by-case basis.

When placing an item on eReserve, try wherever possible to link directly to a library holding. Not only is this an easy way to adhere to copyright requirements, it increases accessibility for students and lets the library know when a resource is being used.

If you cannot provide a link, a scanned PDF of the excerpt can be used instead. You can ask Library staff to create these PDFs for you – just include a note when submitting your material! If you choose to provide your own scans, please email them to (remember to include your course code and semester!) and ensure they meet the following standards:

  • Single page view (do not scan two pages at once – this creates a barrier to accessibility)
  • Portrait orientation
  • Text reads left-to-right, top-to-bottom and is not severely angled or cut off
  • Minimum resolution of 300 dpi ; preferably 600 dpi and OCR
  • Includes either the work's title page or a bibliographic citation (any format, must be legible)
  • If possible, crop out any black margins

Loan Periods & Fines

Loan periods are assigned to Print Reserves only and may be any one of the following:

  • 1, 2, 3, 4, or 24 Hours
  • 3 or 7 Days


Please note that personal copies and non-circulating library holdings may also be identified for In Library Use Only, but library holdings that normally circulate cannot be restricted in this way.


Fines for late items will be assessed at the following rates:

          Hourly Loans: $0.50 per hour

          Daily Loans:   $5.00 per day

The maximum fine is $25 per item, regardless of loan period.


Unless otherwise indicated, Print Reserves may be taken out of the library, but hourly loan items cannot be renewed. Daily loans may be renewed once, in person or online through myLibrary. Once you have returned a Print Reserve, you must wait 30 minutes before checking it out again, to ensure other students have an opportunity to borrow it.



Can I place textbooks on Reserve?

If you are providing your own copy, yes. Please note that the library does not purchase textbooks and therefore cannot place any on reserve from our own holdings.


How many items can I place on Reserve?

There is no hard limit to the number of items you can submit. However, we recommend limiting your submission to required readings. The purpose of reserves is to ensure students have access to high-demand materials, not to create a personalized collection for each course. In other words, a good candidate for course reserves is something that every student in your course will have to access. Recommended readings and research materials, which may be helpful to some students but not necessary for all, should not be placed on Reserve.


Why can’t my students see the materials I have on Ares/Nexus?

What does “Item Activation Pending” mean in Ares?

Due to copyright requirements, eReserves cannot be made available to students outside of the normal class period (i.e. the semester in which the course takes place). If eReserve materials have been fully processed and are ready before the start of term, they will be given the status “Item Activation Pending” and will become automatically available on the first day of classes.

If classes have started or your items do not have the “Item Activation Pending” status, and students still cannot see the materials, please contact the Reserves team at so we can investigate the issue. Remember to include your course number!


The material I want to place on reserve isn't in the library. Can I place an order for it?

Yes! Contact your subject librarian to request a purchase. In some cases, it can take several months to process new acquisitions, so be sure to make your request early. If you are only looking for an excerpt, Reserves staff can also bring the material in through ILL.









Kim Nguyen, Reserves Specialist

Jenna Baraschuk-Modha, InterLibrary Loan and Reserves Assistant