Course Reserves

Course Reserve items are available at the Reserve Desk identified in the Quick Search Course Reserves tab.

KU instructors place materials on Course Reserve in order to better guarantee their availability for students.

Materials owned by the libraries or personal copies provided by the instructors will be available for checkout from one of the Reserve Desks in the KU Libraries.  This service is often referred to as On-Site Reserves and will typically include complete books, journals, media items, and other relevant material to support classroom instruction.  Course Reserve materials have shortened loan periods in order to ensure availability for all borrowers.

Reserve desk locations and searching help

Course Reserve items are available at the Reserve Desk identified in the Quick Search Course Reserves tab.

What information do I need to find a Course Reserve item?

The most helpful information to locate items on reserve include:

  • Instructor’s name
  • Course name and number
  • Department name

How do I use Quick Search to find Course Reserve items?

  • Go to Quick Search, and select Course Reserve tab at the top of the browser window.
  • Enter the instructor name, course name, or other information in the search bar.
  • Be certain to make note of the call number and the Reserve Desk location.
  • Take this information with you to the designated Reserve Desk.

How do I search the Library Catalog for Course Reserve items?

  • Go to online catalog, and select Course Reserve tab.
  • Scroll through the drop-down menu and highlight the appropriate instructor, department, or course for which you want to search for items.
  • Be certain to make note of the call number and the Reserve Desk location.
  • Take this information with you to the designated Reserve Desk.

Loan periods

On-site reserve loan periods range from four hours hours to one week.  Some items are available only for use in the library.  Be sure to ask when a Course Reserve item is due when you check it out.

Where should I return Course Reserve materials?

All Course Reserve materials must be returned to the service desk from which they were checked out by the time due in order to avoid overdue fines.  There is no grace period for the return of Course Reserve items.  See Circulation Policies and Procedures for additional information.


To place items on Reserve for a class there are two options. Complete the online Reserve Request Form or visit the desired Reserve Desk location to fill out a paper version of the web form.

Provide the following information on the Reserve Request Form:

  • Reserve desk location
  • Instructor's first and last name
  • Instructor's email address
  • Course department and number
  • Course name
  • List all items to be placed on reserve including library items and personal copies (author, title, and call number for each book; title and call number for each DVD or video; etc.)
  • Loan period for each item to be placed on reserve
  • Are all of the items being delivered?
  • Are there items for library staff to locate?
  • Are there items listed that the library does not appear to own?

Deliver on-site course reserve lists and any items to the reserve desk where the items are to be placed on reserve.

The following loan periods are available for reserve items:

  • four-hour - with overnight (overnight checkout permitted)
  • four-hour - no overnight (library use only | overnight checkout not permitted)
  • one day
  • one week

For reserve items to be ready for circulation by the first day of classes, completed reserve request forms and any personal copies must be received by the following dates:

  • fall semester - August 1st
  • spring semester - January 2nd
  • summer semester - May 15th

Please note:

  • Reserve requests are processed on a first-come, first-served basis
  • Requests received by the deadline will receive prompt processing and be ready for checkout by the first day of classes
  • Requests received after the deadline will be processed as quickly as possible, but availability by the first day of classes cannot be guaranteed
  • Items that are not currently owned by the libraries may take between two and four months to be ordered and processed

Please notify the appropriate reserve desk when items can be removed from reserve lists or when entire reserve lists may be eliminated. Doing so allows us to return library materials to the general circulating collection and to make space available for new reserve items. Consult the Quick Search Course Reserves tab to review your course reserve lists. Materials may only remain on reserve for classes taught during the current semester.

The reserve service liaisons are available to assist you with the course reserve process and policies.

Students may ask for assistance at the reserve desk where the items have been placed on reserve.

What is not included in Course Reserve?

Any item which requires copyright compliance cannot be placed on Course Reserve.  This means you will not find photocopies of articles, chapters, or other course readings through On-Site Reserves.  Many of these items are available through the KU Libraries’ Databases. Please consult with your instructor if you have any questions, or contact us.