The University of Massachusetts Amherst

FAQ for Instructors

How do I request items for physical reserves? 

  • Print/physical reserves will not be offered in Fall 2020 or Spring 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the need to quarantine material between borrowers. 

How do I add eReserves to my Moodle or Blackboard course page?

Begin by adding the UMass Libraries Course Materials Tool to your Moodle or Backboard page.


I've added the block; how do I add requests for material?

  • Watch this screencast or follow the directions below.
  • Click on the UMass Libraries Course Materials link in the block on your Moodle or Blackboard course page.  You will be taken directly to the course page within the the UMass Libraries' Course Materials system.


  • If you are teaching multiple courses that use UMass Libraries' course materials, click on the name of the course to which you'd like to add material.   This takes you to the main menu for the course page.
  • From the course page in the UMass Libraries' Course Material system, click on the Add Reserve Items link in the left side menu under Instructor Course Tools.

Ares add reserve items

  • Choose the form for the type of material you are requesting.

  • Fill out the Reserve Item form as completely as possible.  You must fill out all fields with a red asterisk, but we would appreciate you filling out any additional fields for which you have the information.  We will email you if we do not have sufficient information to process an item, but this can delay your processing time significantly.

  • Once you have entered all relevant information, choose how the item will be supplied (i.e., have the library search for and acquire the material, or if you are going to upload your own file).  You can also adjust the visibility dates for this particular item. By default, it will be visible for the entire semester (if you don't change the dates, but decide to in the future, see how do I edit a digital reserve item below).  This will hide an item from the students' view until the Start Date you choose.  Once the form is complete, press Submit Item.

  • Reserve staff will process your request, including searching for digital access to the material, scanning UMass' or other libraries' copies, and linking to streaming media.  

  • You will be taken back to the main class page, where you will see your request along with its status.

Ares reserve item status



How do I clone eReserves from an older semester

  • Watch this screencast or follow the directions below.
  • Begin by activating the UMass Libraries Course Materials block in Moodle or Blackboard (see instructions above).
  • Click on the UMass Libraries Course Materials link in the block to go to your course page.
  • Click on Add Reserve Item in the Instructor Course Tools menu.
  • Below the item format requests is a listing of courses taught in prior semesters.

Ares import items from previous course

  • Click on the name of the course from which you'd like to import items.
  • All items are checked by default.  Uncheck any items you don't want carried over into your new course.
  • Click on Import Items.
  • If you don't see a course you've taught before or can't find a particular item you've used before, please email Reserves staff directly.

Ares import items from previous course 2

  • The items will be automatically imported into your new course.


How do I edit a digital reserve item? (video tutorial coming soon)

  • Begin by accessing the main page for your course in the UMass Libraries Course materials system (see above).
  • Click on the course name to edit items for that course.
  • Click on the item you wish to edit.
  • Click on edit item on the top left.

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  • Make any necessary changes and click Submit Item at the bottom of the screen.


How do I add tags to items (useful for separating materials week by week or highlighting readings for a particular paper or exam)?

  • You can add tags when you are submitting a request for digital reserve items (see instructions for adding materials above).

Ares tags

  • You can also add or modify tags by clicking on any item and entering or changing information in the Modify Tags field.

Ares modify tags