Frequently Asked Questions

Course reserves are course materials set aside by the Libraries so that students can easily access them. See the below categories for more information.

Physical Course Reserves

What are physical course reserves?

Physical course reserves are hard copies of course materials that are held at the Newcomb Reading Room or the University Downtown Center (UDC) Library. These items may be checked out by patrons with valid Binghamton University ID cards for short periods of time.

What can be placed on physical course reserves?
  • Items owned by the Libraries, like books, DVDs, VHS tapes, microfilm, and complete issues of print journals.
  • Instructors' personal copies of the above materials, so long as these items have been legally acquired and their circulation would not violate copyright laws.
What cannot be placed on physical course reserves?
  • Course packs
  • Any personally-printed compilation of articles or book chapters
  • Items obtained via interlibrary loan
What loan periods are there for physical course reserves?
  • Books: 2 hours or Next Day
  • DVDs and other media: 3 hours or Next Day
What fees are associated with late returns ?
  • 2-hour and 3-hour loans: $.05/minute
  • Next Day-loans: $5.00/day

Electronic course Reserves

What are electronic course reserves?

Electronic course reserves include ebooks, hyperlinks to online content, and electronic copies of book chapters and journal articles. The Reserves Department posts this material to the "Library Course Reserves" content area on myCourses.

What can be placed on electronic reserve?
  • One scanned chapter from a book in PDF format.
  • One scanned article from a journal in PDF format.
  • Links to articles in journals owned in electronic full-text by Binghamton University Libraries.
  • Links to ebooks owned by Binghamton University Libraries.
  • Materials written by the instructor (e.g.: syllabi, lecture notes, sample exams, problem sets, homework solutions).
What cannot be placed on electronic reserve?

Multiple articles from the same issue of a print journal or multiple chapters from the same book.

  • If multiple chapters or articles are requested, the Reserves department will post one of them to Blackboard and will place the entire book or journal on physical reserve, if possible.
Book chapters with page totals greater than 10% of the entire work.
  • If a page total is greater than 10%, the Reserves department will place the entire book on physical reserve, if possible.

Reserves Requests

How do I submit a request for items to be placed on reserve?

Please fill out an online reserve request form. Instructions for accessing the form can be found here.

When do I need to submit my reserve requests?

We're always happy to accept reserve requests! To ensure that your request is ready by the time you need it, please allow at least one week of processing time.

For start-of-term availability, please submit your requests by the following dates: 

  • Fall: August 1st
  • Winter: December 1st
  • Spring: December 1st
  • Summer: May 1st
Who may submit reserve requests?

All individuals who are acting as instructors of record or as teaching assistants may submit reserves requests. This includes both faculty members and graduate students.

Students enrolled in a course may not submit reserve requests for that course; however, any student in need of course materials is encouraged to suggest to his or her instructor that these items be placed on reserve.

What are some tips for successful processing?
  • Submit your requests with enough time to allow for processing (at least a week). The earlier the better!
  • Supply us with current personal copies of textbooks and other required course purchases.
  • Bring items from the Libraries' collections directly to Reserves staff.
  • Provide full bibliographic citations to ensure we get the exact item(s) your'e looking for; call numbers are helpful if you know them.
  • Keep copyright guidelines in mind when choosing materials--selections greater that 10% of a book or more than one article from an issue of a print journal cannot be posted electronically.
  • Return any requested items that are on loan to you so they can be made accessible to your students.
  • Please keep in mind that reserve requests do not "roll over" automatically from semester to semester. A new request must be submitted if materials will be used again. This can be done quickly and easily by "cloning" course materials from a previous semester.


How will my students find course materials?

Electronic course reserves can be accessed via the 'Library Course Reserves" link on myCourses.

Physical items can be accessed at the Newcomb Reading Room or University Downtown Center Library. Information about physical items (location, loan period, availability) can be found via students' myCourses page. Reserves items can also be searched using the "Reserves" tab on the Libraries' home page.

What if a student needs course materials that are not on reserve?

Students may ask their instructors to place a reserve request. They may also ask Reserves Staff for help in contacting professors.

Contact information

Last Updated: 5/23/17