Service

Course Reserves

We work with faculty and instructors to help provide students with access to course materials.

Create your Library Reserves List in Canvas

Whether you want to reuse materials you requested in the past, or you want to request something new, we can help.

Just create a list of what you need in Canvas, and we will find or create a digital copy. If you need us to make a physical copy available instead, note that in your request.

Things to know:

  • We are committed to providing every available resource to support teaching and learning. We encourage you to include items that you know the library does not own. 
  • We will first look for any existing digital access for requested materials, including licensed journal articles and e-books, as well as open access materials. If we cannot locate an item in a digital format, we can use a physical copy to create a digital version. 
  • If you include a date-needed-by in your request, we will do our best to accommodate.
  • Not everything available digitally will have unlimited access. We will, however, do what we can to optimize availability within copyright restrictions.
  • Summer School and Extension School Canvas sites do not include the Library Reserves tool by default. Please email us for assistance with these courses.

    Course Reserves, by Professional School

    Have a question about setting up reserves for your course from another School? 

    Important dates and timeframes

    Priority will be given to requests submitted before the following dates:

    • Fall term: August 1
    • J-term: November 15
    • Spring term: December 1
    • Summer term: May 15

    Priority dates for professional schools may differ.

    Materials will be posted to your Canvas site in these timeframes:

    Content already available at the library: 

    • E-books and links to digital journal articles: 1-2 business days. 
    • PDFs of chapters scanned from print materials: 2-4 business days. 
    • Entire books scanned from print material: 4 weeks. 
    • Streaming media: 2-4 business days. 

     Content that needs to be purchased: 

    • E-books : varies, depending on licensing agreements.  
    • Scans of print material (chapters or entire books): 4-6 weeks. 
    • Streaming media: varies, depending on licensing agreements, generally 4-6 weeks. 

    Managing Library Reserves Lists

    Course reserves for FAS courses are managed through the Library Reserves section in Canvas. You'll use the platform to submit requests, reuse past course reserve lists, and track the processing status of requested items.

    1. Screenshot of Course Reserve button in Canvas
      Log in to Canvas
    2. Reuse a Library Reserves list from a previous semester or create a new one
    3. Add items by searching the Library's collection from directly within the Library's Reserves tool, or use HOLLIS or Cite It! to import citations. You can also add a citation manually.
    4. Submit your Library Reserves list to the library for review and processing
    5. Publish your list to make it viewable to your students

    Get Help

    Email us at reserves@harvard-as.libanswers.com

    Help with Canvas login and general Canvas questions, email ithelp@harvard.edu.

    Teach with special collections

    Discover and collaborate with archivists and librarians to teach students how to use primary sources and understand material culture.

    For Students

    Details about reserves for your classes can be found on your course Canvas site.

    Look for the "Library Reserves" section, where you'll find links to online readings and information about how to access physical items placed on reserve.

    Things to keep in mind 

    • Physical items placed on reserve are loaned out for three hours at a time.
    • You can check the availability of an item by clicking the links to HOLLIS on your course site.