FAQ for Course Reserves

Course Reserves are items owned by ZSR and/or by a course instructor that support regular course materials. Books and DVDs are held at the Library Services Desk and circulated as a 2 hour loan. Articles and internet resources are accessed as PDFs and webpage links through the online Course Reserves system.


What materials can I put on Course Reserves?

  • Books & DVDs owned by ZSR Library or WFU instructor
  • Scanned book chapters (must include title & copyright pgs.) and journal articles
  • Links to webpages on the internet
  • Video clips that have been legally obtained
  • Links to articles in ZSR Library article databases
  • PDFs of original material – i.e. syllabus, class notes, etc.
  • Links to electronic books and streaming videos in ZSR collection
  • Items you request to be purchased by ZSR

Are there items I can’t place on Course Reserves?

Yes. Items that are put on Course Reserves must be owned by either ZSR or the instructor.

  • No items obtained through Interlibrary Loan can be placed on Course Reserves.
  • Articles purchased and downloaded that are licensed to be used “only for personal research” may not be used unless permission is obtained in writing from the publisher or the license permits posting on electronic Course Reserves.

How long will it take to have an item available on Course Reserves?

Items are usually placed on Course Reserves within a week of your request. However, keep in mind that items may be missing from the shelf or checked out to another patron and will need to be recalled. These circumstances delay processing. It would be best to allow 2 weeks.

How many items can I place on Course Reserves?

There is no limit to the number of items that can be placed on Course Reserves. However, each semester the instructor should review the items on Course Reserves to determine if they are still the best resources available. This will prevent payment of unnecessary copyright royalty fees.

Why should I use Course Reserves rather than posting material on Canvas?

ZSR will monitor copyright and licensing compliance for your electronic Course Reserves and pay reasonable copyright royalties when necessary. ZSR reserves the right to use the least expensive option available to supply the requested item. This may mean that an electronic book will be used instead of paying copyright royalties to post a PDF copy of a book chapter.

How many pages of a book can be placed on Course Reserves?

Copyright law states that one of the factors to be considered in determining a fair use exemption is, “the amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole.”  The library will assess all chapter and article requests to determine eligibility for the fair use exemption and will request copyright permission and pay any reasonable fees for material it determines to exceed an exemption.

Will my department be charged for copyright royalties?

The Z. Smith Reynolds Library will pay reasonable copyright royalties for chapters and articles posted on Course Reserves. Departments are not charged for these fees.

Adding Courses

The class I’m teaching is not listed in the Available courses list for my Course Reserves account. What do I do?

Sometimes the classes from the Registrar’s Office do not load correctly. Contact reserves@wfu.edu and the missing class will be added.

Why is my class not listed under Current courses?

  1. Check to see if your class is listed under Available courses. If it is listed there, select ‘Activate’ and your course will be moved into Current courses.
  2. If you have activated your course and it is more than 60 days before the semester begins, the course will not appear in the Current courses list on the main Course Reserves page. Available courses from the Registrar will be listed 60 days before the first day of classes.

I am co-teaching a course. Can we both have access to Course Reserves for this class?

The course should be available to be activated in either instructor’s Course Reserves account. If there are any access issues, please contact reserves@wfu.edu and the co-teacher or any other designated proxy will be added to the course.

Adding & Deleting Items

How soon can I add Course Reserves items to my course?

Up to 60 days before the course begins.

What if I want to use the same items as last semester?

  1. Select the current course to which you would like to add items from a previous semester.
  2. On the right, select ‘Add Reserve Items’ under ‘Course Options’.
  3. Select the course where the item was used and then check the box next to the items you want to put on Course Reserves for the current semester.

How can I add items to more than one course/section at a time?

  1. Find the item in our online catalog and open the webpage for the individual item.
  2. Under FOR FACULTY & STAFF, select ‘Add to Course Reserves’.
  3. You may be prompted to sign in to Course Reserves and the request form will preload.
  4. Add additional or missing information to the form.
  5. Select the class(es) and section(s) to which you would like to add the item.
  6. Submit the form.

What if ZSR doesn’t own the item I want to place on Course Reserves?

Enter the item information in Course Reserves and choose the ‘Please purchase this item…’ option. It is not necessary to contact your library liaison to request a purchase for Course Reserves.

What happens if an item is on Course Reserves for another course?

An item can be put on Course Reserves for more than one course at a time. Instructors of both courses are contacted to establish dates the items are needed.

I want to post an article from a ZSR database, should I download the PDF and upload it to Course Reserves?

No, Course Reserves policy is to only post links to the articles in our databases so that proper attribution is maintained, license agreements are not violated, and further research on the subject is enabled. If known, enter the durable URL for the article under the ‘Available on the web from the following URL’ option. If you are not able to determine the correct URL, Course Reserves staff will add this information.

How do I take items off Course Reserves?

Choose the item from the course page. Availability dates can be customized for an item that is not needed on Course Reserves for the entire semester by selecting ‘Edit’. An item can be removed from Course Reserves by choosing ‘Delete’.

Scanning & Pulling Items

Do I need to scan the book chapter or article myself?

No. You can submit the information about the chapter or article and Course Reserves will scan the item. Important: If you do scan the item, a copy of the title page and copyright page of the book must be included.

Where do I take items to be placed on Course Reserves?

Items owned by ZSR can be pulled by Course Reserves staff or you can bring them to the Library Services Desk. Personal copies of books and DVDs to be placed on Course Reserves can also be brought to the Library Services Desk. Please include a note with the instructor’s name, the class information and a contact phone number. You will still need to enter the item information in Course Reserves.