Reserves are supplementary course materials that Duke faculty and staff put on hold, with limited circulation periods, for patrons to use. These materials are housed both at the circulation / service desks of the Duke University Libraries and online through an electronic reserve system (electronic reserves use the PDF file format).*

  • *NOTICE:  The information stored in the Electronic Reserves database is protected under the Copyright Laws of the United States (Title 17 U.S. Code) governing the making of photocopies of copyrighted material. The person using this system is liable for any infringement. For more in-depth information see Access to Copyrighted Materials on Reserve

For Students

Access Reserves 

Access Reserves in Sakai 

For Instructors

Place Items on Reserve

There is one form for all formats/locations

Place Items on Reserve

General Instructions

    • In consideration of the fair use exception to U.S. copyright law, we can place limited portions of a work on E-Reserve. For more information about copyright law, please contact  copyright-questions@duke.edu .
    • Allow at least three work days to process your requests. Items are normally processed on a first-in / first-worked policy. Material may be submitted throughout the semester. However, please note that if you submit your request(s) within a few days of the start of semester, staff may not be able to fulfill your Reserve needs in time for start of classes.
    • Identify materials on your online Reserve form as on your syllabus. Please ensure a complete bibliographic citation is provided.
    • Staff remove Reserve materials at the end of every semester. Please email reserves staff to re-activate a course reserve list.
    • For films, choose the "streaming video" option on the "Place Items on Reserve" request form; if a title isn't owned, in place of call number indicate it needs to be ordered; for more information see:  Lilly Library Reserves
    • We do not scan articles that are available on the Internet or via the library's electronic databases, but we will place appropriate URLs of the articles on E-Reserve

Books & Instructor's Materials

  • You may request scans of personal materials for electronic reserves. We may only scan limited portions of materials that are under copyright.  If you hold copyright to these materials, please let us know.
  • We cannot place the following materials on Reserve: coursepacks, reference books, books from the Medical Center Library, Law Library, Ford Library,TRLN SHARE or books sourced through Interlibrary loan.  However, we can usually scan limited portions of these materials for use as electronic reserves.
  • We will purchase books, e-books and textbooks for course reserves when possible. 
    • Please allow extra time for ordering, shipping and cataloging when an item must be purchased. Items that must be purchased from international sources are still arriving with significant delays due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
    • Please be aware that many commercially available e-books are not available for purchase by libraries.  This is generally true for materials produced by most textbook publishing houses.