Course Materials (Reserves)

Find textbooks, readings, DVDs, and other materials set aside for course-specific use by your course instructor in WorldCat Course Reserves.

The Course Materials (Reserves) Collection ensures that materials assigned for a class will be accessible to all students who need them. Books and other items are placed on Reserve for a specific course at the request of a faculty member.

Most Reserves have a 2-hour loan period or a 4-hour loan period. Student tip: if you check out an item 2 hours before the Circulation Desk closes, it will be due 1 hour after the library opens the next morning! If the item is a personal copy of the instructor, the instructor may not want the item to leave the library and in that case, overnight check out will not be allowed.

Placing an Item on Course Materials (Reserves)

Access Services handles all Course Materials (Reserves) requests. Faculty should submit requests for all library course reserve items using the McCain Library Course Materials (Reserves) Form (print & eBooks, films, etc.). If you have any questions concerning the form submission, please email .

To ensure timely service, please submit Course Materials (Reserves) requests at least 3 days in advance of the date when they will be needed. In addition to items in McCain's holdings, personal copies of books, textbooks, or DVDs may also be placed on Course Materials (Reserves).

Commercially rented items (i.e. films from Netflix) or interlibrary loaned materials (that belong to another institution) cannot be placed on Course Materials (Reserves). For more information regarding licensed materials and copyright, visit the McCain Copyright and Fair Use LibGuide.

Placing Personal Copies on Course Materials (Reserves)

Faculty should complete a request card at the Circulation Desk or send an email to for any personal books, video, or sound recordings that you would like to place on reserve. Submit cards and items to the Circulation Desk for processing. Be aware that personal items are subject to wear and tear, as well as potential loss, as are all library materials. You may want to check if McCain Library has a copy of the item before placing your personal copy on reserve, or you may decide to choose another title if your copy is rare, expensive, or out of print.

Links to Articles

Many of our research databases enable faculty to create online reading lists that provide a link directly to a journal, magazine, or newspaper article available in one of the library databases. Please contact the Head of Research & Instruction Services, Casey Long (404-471-6343 or, to learn how to create a reading list that is accessible to students through Canvas or consult the following guide.


McCain Library does not buy all the required textbooks for classes taught at Agnes Scott. Professors expect students to have personal copies to use in class and for studying. However, the library will consider using gift funds to purchase one copy, when requested to do so, in order to assist students in financial hardship. These textbooks may be bought as ebooks or placed on Course Materials (Reserves) to allow access to a copy for all enrolled in the course. Note that the library cannot buy textbooks with individual online codes for ancillary materials.

See our flyer with options for renting or purchasing books at a reduced cost.

Controlled Digital Lending (CDL)

The library uses CDL to make print editions of books we own available to students for set amounts of time, similar to physical reserves. When sections of a physical book are requested for virtual access, the library will digitally scan the requested pages and then make them available to the requestee in 2-hour increments. During that time the viewer cannot download, print, and/or share the PDF file, and the physical book is not available for loan to another patron. CDL allows the library to utilize our physical collections in a virtual space while still following established copyright law. If you would like the library to make print materials available for your course reserves via CDL, please let us know.

Students will see the option to email for relevant CDL files in the Course Reserve listings.

See more information regarding the application of controlled digital lending principles to the circulation of print materials.

Back to top