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Affordable Course Content (Greater Allegheny)

A guide to library-provided and/or Open Access materials that PSUGA instructors can use as course content at no cost to students.

Book/Video Reserves

Faculty can place course-required books and videos "on reserve" at the library. Reserve items are housed behind the library service desk, and are available for students to borrow for a limited period of time - from two hours (most common) to seven days. Overdue fees for reserve items are significant - usually $2 per hour. The goal is to provide at least one copy of the text or video that is available to all of the students in the class.

Reserve items can be temporarily donated by the instructor, transferred from any University Libraries location, or purchased at the instructor's request. Purchase requests will be considered by the librarian, who may decline to buy texts that are exorbitantly expensive (publishers sometimes inflate their prices for library purchases) or that contain only minor updates on a previous edition that the library owns.

Note: Purchases are handled at University Park, and can take several days or weeks to reach the library. Please contact your campus librarian with purchase requests as far in advance of when the book will be needed as possible.

Students who want to watch a video outside of class can borrow a portable DVD drive (requires USB connection) for up to three days. Instructors can also request that a video from any PSUL location be available on a specific date for an in-class viewing by submitting the form at

To request that a book or video be placed on reserve at Kelly Library, contact us at

Electronic Reserves

In addition to physical items like books and videos, the library's electronic reserves service provides online access to articles and book selections at the instructor's request. The library assumes responsibility for copyright compliance and, when necessary, pays for permission to make the materials available. The Course Reserves staff at University Park have a great deal of experience with building durable links to texts in the library's online collections, and monitor these links for any changes in location or protocol.

In general, PSUL policy limits the amount of a book that can be posted on e-reserve for a class over the course of a semester to 15-20% of the total pages in the work. Short works like poems and essays can be posted in their entirety provided they do not exceed the allowable portion of the anthology in which they appear.

Note: Links to the physical and electronic reserve lists for a course should appear in the Library Resources section of the course's Canvas page as soon as they are available. For more information about linking to Canvas, go to

To post a reading on e-reserve, click on the link at the top of the following page to fill out the request form:‚Äč. For questions about e-reserves or help with scanning a reading, contact us at