Curious about Library Reserves? Check out the 5 W’s of Reserves for Faculty and Students

Curious about Library Reserves? Check out the 5 W’s of Reserves for Faculty and Students
Jenny James Lee
October 1, 2013

Who can use reserves/place items on reserve?
Our physical reserves collection can be used by all library patrons (students, faculty members, and guests). Access to electronic resources is limited to students and faculty: you can only see the electronic items requested for your course.

What can you get from reserves/place on reserve?
Quick and easy access to physical books (at all three Drexel libraries) and electronic resources (via BBLearn). Using Libraries’ reserves services guarantees that the entirety of your course reserves material is accessible from one, central page. Links to articles and books chapters are double checked to make sure that all of the material is where it should be when students need it. For faculty members, using Libraries reserves comes with the assurance that all of your posted material is in keeping with the University’s Fair Use Copyright policy.

Where do you access reserve items/upload or input reserve items?
You can access all of your electronic reserves materials in BlackBoard Learn. Students can find course reserves listed in the menu on the upper left corner of the layout. Professors can access the advanced features in the Course Tools option on the Course Management menu, where they can request to add items. Students and professors can also search for reserves books in the library catalog by title, author, or keyword.

When can you access items/How may days/weeks in advance do you need to input them before they're needed?
You can access your course reserves items as soon as you have access to your Blackboard Learn course shell. For students, this is the first day of class. The Libraries’ reserves team does their best to have reserves items posted two weeks before they’re needed for class, but there is usually a lag time at the start of the quarter when most instructors are submitting material. The earlier you submit requests, the earlier we can process them!

Why does the Libraries Manage this or Why does it take so long, is it so limited, can you not take items out of the library?
That’s a lot of questions! The principle guiding all reserves policies is to make sure that course reserves material is available to as many students as possible while still following the copyright guidelines set by the University. For books, this means a limited loan period (2 or 4 hours) and geographical limits (all books must remain inside the library). For electronic materials, this means reviewing all course reserves materials at the start of every term, even if that material has been used in the past. This is the most reliable way to ensure that all posted material is following the fair use copyright guidelines. Most professors place all of their course reserves requests at the beginning of the term, when they receive access to their BlackBoard Learn course shell. The result is several thousands of requests that pour in. All three members of the reserves team work diligently to make sure that all posted material is up by the needed week, but it takes a little longer during busy times.

Click here to provide feedback on your Reserves experience.

For more information about Reserves, contact Katherine Fischer at