Electronic Course Reserves

Electronic Course Reserves (E-Reserves) provide online access to supplementary course reading materials submitted to the Cornette Library by West Texas A&M University faculty to support classroom instruction. E-Reserves allow students to view, print, and download materials 24 hours a day, 7 days a week from any computer with a Web browser. E-Reserves allow simultaneous use by multiple authorized users.

Occasionally E-Reserves will not be available due to server-related issues. You may also encounter difficulty in printing these documents if your computer does not have sufficient memory. Depending on the file size and your connection speed, it may take as long as 30 minutes for the document to download. Hard copy for most E-Reserves will still be available upon request at the Circulation Desk. Course reserve materials that have not been converted to electronic format will also be available at the Circulation Desk.

Online access is password-restricted to students and faculty of WTAMU to comply with the Fair Use guidelines of U.S. copyright law. Please carefully read the instructions in the pop-up box which requires a unique username and password.

Materials can be accessed by searching for a particular course, a professor an author, or title in the online catalog. These reserves are available through the course reserve search in the online catalog.

The main Buff Portal page has a link to the Library webpage. You can access the Library’s online catalog and E-Reserves through this link.

For further information contact us: Beth Vizzini or Josh Edwards, or call (806) 651-2223.


Some E-Reserves are Adobe Acrobat Portable Document Format (PDF) files which retain all formatting of the original document including fonts, styles, spacing, and imbedded graphics. If Adobe Acrobat Reader is not installed on your computer, you must download a free copy of Adobe Acrobat Reader in order to view or print the document. If you are having trouble opening a PDF document, try downloading the most recent version of Adobe (PC) or Preview (Mac).

Other E-Reserves may include PowerPoint (PPT) Presentations. If Microsoft PowerPoint is not installed on your computer, you must download the free Microsoft PowerPoint Viewer in order to view or print the presentation.

Additionally, E-Reserves could have audio files requiring Real Player or a similar audio service. If the software is not installed on your computer, you can download the free version of Real Player, or other audio service, in order to listen to the audio file.

Guidelines for E-Reserve Documents

Copyright Fair Use Considerations

Laws pertaining to copyright must be observed. Please review Title 17 Copyright Laws.

West Texas A&M University's Cornette Library gives special emphasis to these copyright considerations:

  1. The purpose and character of use, including whether such use is of a commercial nature or is for non-profit educational purposes;
  2. The nature of the copyrighted work;
  3. The amount and substantiality of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole; and,
  4. The effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.

The library reserves the right to select which materials will be processed for E-Reserves. The library will not place materials on E-Reserve if it judges that the nature, scope, or extent of the material is beyond the reasonable limits of Fair Use. Faculty should obtain permission to use copyrighted materials such as images which have been copied and inserted in their course materials or Web pages. The library will not place an entire book into the Electronic Course Reserve Collection.

Faculty may choose to place sample exams, lecture notes, journal articles, course syllabi, and assignments in the E-Reserve collection. It is acceptable to copy a poem. Fair Use does not allow for copying sections of works that make up a substantial portion of the work as a whole (this portion is considered to be 15% or more).


Class notes, exams, and other materials should be neatly typed and printed on a laser jet printer to improve the quality of the PDF file. Exceptions for handwritten materials may be made on a case-by-case basis. Material sent in electronic format requires minimal processing and therefore may be available to students in a relatively short period of time. When possible, the original document containing articles should be submitted to allow for quality reproduction.

Length of Document

Whenever possible, documents should be broken down into short segments. This is especially important for limiting downloading and printing time. Documents should be broken down by: weekly class readings or assignments, individual articles and chapters, single exams, etc. The proportion of materials placed on Electronic Course Reserves for a given course should be small in relation to materials used for the course overall.

Copyright Permission

Course Reserves will only include items that are lawfully obtained either by the library or the instructor requesting the item. Lawfully obtained is defined as anything that is either purchased or obtained by way of the Fair Use provisions. Copyrighted items will be retained in reserves for only one semester. Items to be repeatedly placed on reserve for the same instructor and the same course will require copyright permission. Similarly, items used by multiple instructors require copyright permission or purchase of the item.

Class notes, exams, and other materials created by WTAMU faculty and/or staff will be retained until August 31. If these items are to be extended beyond this date, the Circulation Unit's Reserve Supervisor should be notified in a timely manner.

Preceded by Copyright Notice

All copyrighted items in the Electronic Course Reserves Collection will be preceded by the following copyright notice.


The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs the making of photocopies or other reproduction of copyrighted material.

Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction. One of these specified conditions is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship, or research. If electronic transmission of reserve material is used for purposes in excess of what constitutes fair use, that user may be liable for copyright infringement.

When to Write for Copyright Permission for E-Reserves