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Library Services for Faculty

How to order books, how to put items on reserve, how to schedule a library workshop for your course and more!

What are Reserves?

Supplementary class materials and other documents of interest to the Knox Community are permitted on library reserve.  Items can be placed on Reserve by faculty, staff, and students. There are two types of reserves:


These materials are stored behind the circulation desk and may be checked out with a valid ID for the time specified by the instructor. Available circulation periods: 2,3,4 or 24 hour. A maximum of two reserves may be checked out at one time. Reserves may be renewed once (in person, online, or by phone). Closed reserves may be taken out of the library. This is the most utilized type of reserve.  This is best used for required readings or film viewing


These materials are located on open shelves near the circulation desk in Seymour Library and may not leave the library. Students may browse the collection and use books anywhere in the library.  This choice works well when many students may need to consult the same books, but they don't all have a reading do the same day.  For example if students are writing papers on similar topics.

How to Place Items on Reserve

Option #1: Send your liaison a list of items (books, films or articles) you want on reserve and a copy of your syllabus We will then pull the items, fill out the forms, and place these on reserve for you. To do this, please include the following information to your liaison : 

  • Your Name
  • Your Syllabus - if you don't have it yet, send the list, but send the syllabus as soon as you have it.
  • The course name and number 
  • The title and author/director of the item, full citations is possible. If you are putting a photocopy of an individual article on reserve, please provide the full citation for the article on the front of the photocopy.  
  • If you want closed or open reserve 
  • If closed reserve, select either 2, 3,4, or 24 hours for the loan period

Notes: Films can only go on reserve in Seymour Library, even if they are for SMC Courses. Open Reserves can only be kept in Seymour Library, though we can include SciLib titles

Option #2:  Collect the books, fill out the forms, drop them and a copy of your syllabus off at the Seymour or SMC circulation desks.  

You can print  Reserve Request Forms; These also available at the Library circulation desk. Fill out one form for each item

You can do this yourself, ask a faculty secretary to do it, or ask a student worker for the department to do it.  

Please make sure there is a copy of your syllabus to turn in with the reserves. Please fill out these forms as completely as possible. A full citation is necessary to place the item accurately on reserve. It is also helpful to list the way in which the item is referred to on the syllabus. This allows library staff to better assist students with locating materials. It is suggested that you list full citations on your syllabus.

The reserve will be processed and placed “on reserve” within 24 hours.

At term end, all reserve materials not needed during the succeeding term will be returned to the instructor.  If you wish materials to remain on reserve, be sure to indicate this on the reserve form.

Reserves Policies

  • Consider the document Copyright and Fair Use at Knox College when preparing library reserves. All materials on reserve are subject to these restrictions.
  • Items owned by a faculty member may be placed on reserve at the faculty member's own risk.  Please provide full information on how this item will be referenced on your syllabus. 
  • You may photocopy and place on reserve only a portion of an entire work (e.g. chapter of a book; 1 article from a particular journal issue).
  • Interlibrary Loans, I-Share items, rented materials, textbook review copies, and periodicals MAY NOT be placed on reserve.
  • We recommend that PDFs or digital articles not be put on reserve via the library, but linked for your students via Moodle, Google Classroom, Google Drive, or some other restricted access course page. Fair use will more frequently apply when copied items are made available to students by an individual faculty member than when made available by the institution.
  • At term end, all reserve materials not needed during the succeeding term will be removed from reserve.  If they are items from the library's collections, they will be re-shelved.  If the items are personally owned by instructors, they will be returned to the instructor.  If you wish materials to remain on reserve for more than one term, please consult your liaison.

Alternatives to Traditional Reserves

Electronic Reserves

The Knox libraries discourage the use of electronic reserves through the Knox Library Catalog because of potential copyright issues. A copying instance is much more likely to be considered Fair Use by a judge if the copying is done by an individual rather than an institution or group.  

An Alternative - Using Moodle, Google Classroom, Google Drive, or another restricted access site.

Posting pdfs, created by following fair use guidelines, to a course site, restricted to only students, is a much better alternative than electronic library reserves.  This environment allows access to the readings to be limited to the intended class audience, and providing that kind of restricted access is necessarily in complying with the fair use guidelines. See the College's fair use policy page for more information.

Fair Use Guidelines Still Apply

The limited access environment of Moodle, Google Classroom, or Google Drive does not mean that any reading can be posted. Any pdf copies made and posted to  must be made according to fair use guidelines (see the box on the right for more information and also visit the College's fair use policy page). Otherwise, you have made the copy illegally.  

Sometimes faculty have been misinformed and think that anything that is for an educational purpose or classroom use constitutes fair use under copyright law. But this is not the case. Fair use applies 4 factors to any copying decision, and the use of the copy is only one of those factors. You are required to weigh all 4 factors, and determine if your intended copy leans towards fair use or not.