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Course Reserves

Digital Course Reserves

With digital reserves, a digitized copy of a print item--an entire book if needed--is available to one student at a time for a limited duration. Like physical reserves, the print items can belong either to the library or to the instructor.

How does Digital Reserves work?

  • Our library software provides a tool called Controlled Digital Lending that allows us to manage electronic access to locally-digitized materials.   
  • Students can find and borrow digital reserve materials by searching the course reserves in Primo just the same as they do for physical reserves. Instructors can share Primo permalinks to individual items or to the course's full reserve list.
  • To ensure the service complies with copyright law, there are digital controls in place...: 
  1. Downloading, saving, and printing from the file are restricted. If a student has an accommodation need, the library will work with ODS to provide equitable access.
  2. No more than one person can view a digital reserves file at a time, unless the library possesses more than one copy of the print item. In other words, if we own one, we can loan one.
  3. The digital loan is limited duration. We currently have them expiring after 30 minutes.
  • ...and a few other conditions, too
  1. While the digital reserve file is available, the library must retain possession of the physical book. That goes back to the "own one, loan one" concept.
  2. Customized textbooks or course packs that students would typically purchase from the bookstore cannot be offered through Digital Reserves..

For Faculty - Requesting Digital Reserves

Due to the variable lengths of print materials and demand, please allow a full week for processing.

First, a caveat: if you are using a trade book as a course text, Digital Reserves may not be the most appropriate option. Contact your librarian to discuss whether a licensed ebook of the title is available. Ebooks licenses typically allow for more simultaneous users, as well as downloading, printing and saving of pages.

To request Digital Reserves for an item owned by the library--or for a personally-owned item we already have on physical reserve--find the item in Primo. Sign into Primo, then click Request Options in the detailed area, as pictured.


Request options in WOU Library's Primo


To request Digital Reserves for a personally-owned item not already in our possession, complete either

and then deliver your item to the library with the form attached.  Remember that as long as the Digital Reserve item is available, the library must retain your personal copy. We will return it after the Removal Date you indicate on the form.

When our processing is complete, we will email you a Primo link to the item.