Please be aware that Course Reserves services are limited due to the COVID-19 pandemic. No physical books will be circulated during this time. For the most up-to-date information, please visit our guide on Penfield Library Services During the COVID-19 Pandemic.


Putting materials on reserve means that every student in your class has free access to them.

  • E-reserves are available to students online.
  • Physical items may be placed on reserve at Penfield Library's Check-Out & Reserves Desk.

What Can / Can't Be Put on Reserve


  • Materials available through our databases
  • Anything you can check out from Penfield
    Books, videos, music discs, etc.
  • Personal Materials
    We'll label and barcode them, but can't be responsible in case of theft.
  • Student Work
    With signed authorization from its author.


  • Photocopies, scans, etc. of resources
    As long as they meet the requirements for fair use.

Fair Use Guidelines

  • No more than 10% or 1 chapter from a book.
  • One short story, short essay, or short poem.
  • One article from a journal or newspaper.
  • One chart, diagram, graph, drawing, or picture from a book, periodical, or newspaper.
  • Up to 10% but not more than 30 seconds of a music recording or music video.

Anything published in the U.S. before 1923 is in the public domain, and is exempt from these requirements. Learn more about copyright and fair use.


  • Interlibrary loan materials, or materials from other libraries
  • Items from Special Collections

Submitting Your Request

  1. Complete the Reserves Request Form online or Word document on paper.
    If you use the paper form, submit it to the Check-Out & Reserves Desk and email any e-reserves items to
  2. Bring a copy of any physical items to the Check-Out & Reserves Desk.

If you need to provide a URL to a journal article in one of the library's databases, check out these Word document directions to make sure you send a persistent URL.


Loan Periods & Overdue Fines

You get to choose how students will borrow materials:

  • Library Use Only
    • 1-hour loan
    • 2-hour loan
    • 3-hour loan
    • Due at Closing
  • Items May Leave the Library
    • 3-day loan
    • 7-day loan

Overdue Fines: $1 per hour, $25 maximum per item.

Processing Time

Items will be placed on reserve within 5 business days of your request. You will receive an email when they're ready.

Please wait for that email before assigning the material to your class.


We are legally unable to provide you with a list of students who have read the reserve material. Under the Library Confidentiality Act (7B McK 4509 [CPLR 4509]) we may not disclose any circulation records, including reserve records, without a subpoena or a court order.