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Course Reserve FAQ for Instructors

When may I place a Course Reserve Request?

It is best to place course reserve requests as early as possible. Each semester, the Course Reserves staff will send out an email to all registered faculty users notifying them that the units are accepting reserve requests for the following semester. Course reserves may be placed throughout the current semester, as needed.

How long does it take the Course Reserves unit to process a request?

The course reserve units will process requests in the order in which they are received. As a rule, there is little delay in processing course reserve requests; however, some factors may delay the process. For example, there may be delays in processing requests made during the first two weeks of a new semester. Other factors that might affect the processing time of a request are incomplete bibliographic information for a request, or requesting materials that are currently unavailable (because they are currently checked out to a patron or otherwise unavailable). If the library does not own an item, and you do want to request it for course use, please note this in your course reserves request; keep in mind that requests for purchase may also delay availability.

Do I have to pay to put something on reserve?

The George A. Smathers Library pays fees associated with making copyrighted material available for electronic reserves; we do reserve the right to deny requests in cases where the fee is deemed excessive. In the event of this, the instructor will be contacted. If the library does not currently own an item that an instructor wants to place on course reserve, the George A. Smathers libraries will attempt to purchase a copy. please bear in mind that price and availablity may affect the ability of the Course Reserves unit to purchase items.

What happens when I bring in a personal copy of an item for course reserve use?

When we receive the copy, we process the item, place a sticker on the front cover that indicates the length of time for which the item can be checked out, a barcode on the back cover so that the book can be checked out, and a sticker on the spine of the item indicating that the item is on course reserve. Course reserve items are kept behind the Circulation Desk of the libraries, and a Gator 1 ID is required to check out items. While efforts will be made to safeguard materials, the Library is not responsible for any damages to or theft of personal items placed on reserve. At the end of the semester, personal copies are removed from course reserve, and instructors may pick up the items at the circulation desk of the processing library . If the items have not been picked up by the instructors after three weeks into the following semester, the Course Reserve units will send the items back to the instructor's department via campus mail, for distribution to the instructor by the department.

How long can patrons check out materials that are on reserve?

There are several categories of checkout times- here is an explanation of each:

I want one of the students in my class to be able to check out material for longer than the regular loan period. Can I do this?

Yes. Please contact the course reserves unit for more information. It is recommended that instructors give the course reserve unit 24 hours notice in this situation, so we can be certain that another instructor does not need the material for in-class use.

I want to check out a DVD (or other material) on course reserve for class use. Can this material be held for me?

If you have a DVD (for example) on reserve for your course and need it for in-class use, please contact the course reserves department 24-48 hours before your class. We will put a hold on the DVD so that it does not circulate, and will be available for class use. If another instructor has a DVD on course reserve and you need it for course use, please notify the course reserves unit. We will contact the instructor that has the item on reserve, and ask for permission from that instructor to let the material circulate for class use.

Can people outside of my class use hard-copy materials that I have placed on course reserve?

Since other students, staff and faculty may have a legitimate academic interest and need for materials on course reserve, we do allow students outside a given class to check out course reserve materials. We cannot limit circulation of any item to the students enrolled in a given class.

My students say the link to an article is not working, what do I do?

First, be sure that the student is using the UF VPN client; for more information on the UF VPN Client, go to THIS LINK. You may contact the Course Reserves Unit at 352-273-2520 or send an email to notify course reserves staff at It generally takes only a few minutes to fix a broken link. Please note that if the item links to an article we have access to through an electronic subscription, students should also be able to locate the article using the library databases.

My students say the book is not on reserve under my course number, what is going on?

Different library branches use different shelving classification. Library West, for example, shelves all library owned items under the course prefix and number. If there are recurring problems, we encourage the instructor or student to contact the Course Reserves unit for assistance.

What if I have a question that is not addressed here?

Please contact the main course reserve unit, and we will be happy to answer any questions you may have. You may call at 352-273-2520, or email us at