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Copyright Policies for Course Reserves

The Library supports classroom instruction and the University's academic mission by providing students access to required course-related materials through the Course Reserve system. Reserve materials can be in physical format (hard copies of books) or e-reserves (PDFs of book chapters, articles, handouts, etc.).

The policy below ensures protection of both the rights of copyright holders and the fair use rights available to the academic community.

What can be placed on Course Reserve?

  • Materials used in course reserve can come from:
    • the Library’s print collection
    • the Library’s electronic resource collection
    • the course instructor
  • There is no limit to the number of core required readings a faculty member may have on Course Reserve.
  • If the library does not have a requested book, a copy will be ordered. Ordering a book for course reserve will take a week or longer, so it is important to submit reserve book requests as soon as possible.

Restrictions on e-reserves

The Library makes e-reserves available under the provisions of §107 of the Copyright Act of 1976 (fair use). To ensure protection of rights of both copyright holders and the academic community, the following restrictions apply to all e-reserve material:

  • Entire books or journal issues will not be scanned and placed on e-reserve.
  • Materials created and marketed primarily for use in the type of course being offered will not be placed on e-reserve. This includes:
    • textbooks
    • workbooks
    • coursepacks
  • Articles that are available in the Library's electronic databases will not be scanned; instead, we will include a link to the article in Blackboard.
  • Materials are placed on e-reserve for instructors and students registered for the course. A current Georgetown University NetID and password are required to access Blackboard and the Course Reserve page on Library's website.
  • A copyright notice and original source information will be provided for each work.
  • The determination regarding how much of a work may be used is made by evaluating all four of the fair use factors.
      • Purpose and character of the use - nonprofit educational uses, like research, teaching, and scholarship are generally favored under fair use analysis
      • Nature of the copyrighted work – using material from primarily factual works is more likely to be considered fair use than using material from highly creative works
      • Amount and substantiality of the portion used - using small portions from a copyrighted work is more likely to be considered fair use than using a larger portion of the work; there should be a clear connection between the instructor’s pedagogical purpose and the amount of materials used
      • Effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work  -  uses that do not affect the market for the copyrighted work are more likely to be considered fair
  • The Library reserves the right to refuse materials for course reserve if, in our judgment, the request would exceed fair use or otherwise constitute copyright infringement. In such cases, we will contact you to determine how to best fulfill your request, including (i) exploring other options or formats for making the requested material available, or (ii) obtaining permission for use of the work if available at a reasonable cost.

Download reserve forms