Copyright Compliance

  • The Reserves Staff complies with United States copyright laws concerning the placement of photocopies on reserve, laws which also apply to Interlibrary Loan.
  • By submitting a reserve request, the instructor accepts responsibility for copyright compliance.
  • Instructors may be asked to complete a Fair Use Evaluation Checklist, which will be retained to show due diligence in performing a Fair Use analysis.
  • Copies of all letters of permission, evidence of fees paid, and evidence of permission granted will be kept on file by the eReserves librarian.
  • Materials may only be placed on reserve for one semester.

If your request falls outside of the below guidelines, we can seek to obtain permission from the copyright holder to use the material. Please note that these guidelines cover most, but not all potential copyright exceptions, and the Reserves Librarian may refuse to place materials on Reserve if doing so would violate copyright law or licensing agreements.

For more information, see USC Thomas Cooper Library’s Guide to Copyright.

Physical Reserves

Acceptable materials:

  • Books and journals owned by the USCB Libraries
  • Personal copies of books, textbooks, or other instructional materials
  • Lecture notes, syllabi, and copies of exams
  • Course packets IF prepared by a commercial copy center (for example, the USCB Bookstore)


  • Materials requested through Interlibrary Loan or PASCAL
  • Copies of DVDs, VHS, CDs, or audiotapes
  • Rental books
  • Photocopies that do NOT meet “Fair Use” standards

Electronic Reserves


  • The library or faculty member should own a legally-obtained copy of the work. Photocopies are not acceptable.
  • One chapter from a book.
  • One article from a journal or newspaper issue.
  • A prose excerpt that doesn’t exceed 10% of the total work.
  • One chart, graph, diagram, drawing, cartoon, or picture from one book or journal issue.
  • Personal copies of lecture notes, test examples, or other materials produced by the faculty member and to which the faculty still owns copyright.


  • Review copies of books or textbooks
  • Mutiple chapter of a book
  • Multiple articles from the same journal issue
  • Course packs
  • Consumables – workbooks, worksheets, test materials and answer sheets, etc., without publisher permission. (Note: These may be accepted if the faculty member produced or wrote the materials AND owns copyright on the materials.)


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