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Electronic Reserves and Reserves Policies and Procedures


  • Materials are placed on Reserves and Electronic Reserves (ERes) only at the request of Saint Louis University faculty members for the non-commercial, educational use of their students.
  • Appropriate materials for Reserves and ERes include, but are not limited to lecture notes, past examinations, government publications, other public domain materials, articles from journals, and book chapters.
  • Books, videos, CDs and other materials may be placed on Traditional Reserve for two hour, three hour or three day check out.
  • Public domain materials, most government documents, and links to articles and books may be placed on reserve without any copyright restrictions. Persistent links will be provided (in ERes) for articles in licensed journals and databases or for electronic books whenever possible.
  • Copyrighted materials must follow “Fair Use” guidelines as set by U.S. Copyright Law. See SLU Libraries Reserves and Electronic Reserves Guide.
  • Access to materials on ERes is available only from the ERes Web page by the department or instructor's name and is limited by password to students enrolled in each course. Electronic reserve course pages are removed at the end of each semester.
  • In ERes, students click an "Accept" button agreeing to adhere to the copyright notice that appears prior to accessing the content for each course. In addition, the full bibliographic citation and a notice that copyright law may cover the material appear on the first page of each item on ERes.
  • Students are not charged for access. If students choose to print an item, the charge is limited to the cost of printing.
  • Materials not owned or licensed by the libraries will be purchased whenever possible.
  • All materials placed on Reserves and ERes must be legally obtained and owned by the libraries, another unit of the university, or the instructor; or licensed by Saint Louis University or one of its divisions. To place a student's work on Reserves or ERes, written permission from the student is needed and should be submitted with the request.
  • Materials placed on ERes will not be placed on Traditional Reserves.
  • If there is doubt about fair use of certain reserve materials, copyright permission will be sought from the copyright holder, in most instances by the libraries. The libraries will apply for permission through the Copyright Clearance Center (CCC), or to the copyright holder directly if CCC cannot provide copyright permission. All copyrighted materials that are repeatedly used in subsequent semesters, must have copyright permission. The library will immediately remove any materials that are denied copyright permission. In the case of denial, the instructor will be notified.
  • Lengthy works that are under copyright, such as complete books, will not be placed on ERes unless the work is out of print* and the faculty member provides documented permission from the copyright holder. (Emails are not acceptable documentation)
  • The libraries will pay for copyright permission, but reserve the right to refuse materials for Reserves and ERes when the cost for copyright permission is too high. The libraries' policy regarding payment of copyright fees is subject to change contingent upon library budget constraints.

Procedures - Electronic Reserves (ERes)

Processing Time

ERes materials are processed in the order received and as quickly as possible. Please allow a minimum of five to seven working days, particularly at the beginning of each term. Materials may be added before the term begins or later in the term and are usually processed in a shorter time period.

Instructors may choose an option of posting their own materials on ERes and managing their own course pages. Please contact the ERes coordinator for your library for information and training regarding this option. Find your Library's Coordinator contact information.

Hard Copy Specifications

Transferring material to PDF files is easier and faster when:

  • The material is submitted on single-sided 8 ½ X 11 paper.
  • All copies are as clear and clean as possible. (Blurred or blackened copies as well as copies with a lot of underlining are difficult to read on ERes, take up extra space in the PDF file, and increase downloading time.)
  • Text is free of highlighting since it may blacken the print underneath.

Note: Artwork and photographs may not scan clearly. Traditional Reserves may be used as an option.

Submitting Materials
  • Materials may be submitted in a variety of formats (e.g. photocopies, electronic format or digital links).
  • Fill out the ERes Request Form and use the Checklist for Fair Use (PDF).
  • Submit the materials and the source of each item.
  • For books: author, title, publisher, year of publication and exact page numbers.
  • For journal articles: journal title, volume, issue, year and exact page numbers.
  • Journal articles will be linked when possible, so if you know we have a persistent link, you do not have to make photocopies, just provide the necessary information. 

Traditional Reserves - Books, Media, or Photocopies

Fill out the Traditional Reserves Form for Books, Media or Photocopies (PDF). If the materials are library owned, the library staff will retrieve the materials. If the materials are instructor owned, please submit them with the form.

When submitting photocopies, be sure to include bibliographic information.

  • For books: Author, title, publisher, year of publication and exact page numbers.
  • For journal articles: Journal title, volume, issue, year and exact page numbers.
  • All instructors must provide photocopies; the library staff does not provide photocopying services for Reserves.

Please allow a minimum of five to seven working days for processing at the beginning of the term. Processing time is much shorter before the term or later in the term.