Reserve Policy

The Hirsh Health Sciences Library at Tufts University maintains a Course Reserves Collection chosen by faculty to help support the teaching of courses.  The objective is to ensure that high use items required for classes are more readily available to students during their study.  These are processed by and made available through the library’s Circulation Department.  Items placed on reserve may include physical and electronic books, films, journals we do not license electronically, and models.  These materials may be added from library collections, an instructor’s personal collection, or may be requested for purchase.  To ensure greater access to reserve materials, they are loaned out for four hours at a time during the day and some titles circulate overnight. 

Questions? Please contact us:

Phone: 617-636-6705

Information for Students


Books and models circulate for 4 hours.  Occasionally books are available for overnight loan.  They may be picked up from 4pm and must be returned by 9am the next morning.  If the item is collected on a Friday after 4pm or during the weekend, then the due date is Monday at 9am.  Laptops and IT equipment also circulate for 4 hours. 

Late Penalties

If a Reserve book or piece of equipment is returned more than one hour late then a block will go into effect.

  • 1st offense: suspension of all borrowing privileges, to be lifted 24 hours after item is returned
  • 2nd offense: suspension of all borrowing privileges to be lifted one week (7 days) after return
  • 3rd offense: suspension of all borrowing privileges to be lifted one month after return and notification to the dean
  • 4th offense: suspension of all borrowing privileges for the remainder of the current semester and notification to the dean

*As we do not collect fines, this policy has been put into place to ensure the timely return of materials.

Note: Suspension of borrowing privileges goes into effect once a given item is 1 hour overdue, and will remain in effect for the periods listed above.

In the case of reserve items found unattended or overdue items returned the next calendar day/kept overnight, an additional 24 hours will be added to a patron block. For example, if a reserve item is due at 7:00 pm Monday and not returned until 9:00 am Tuesday, the patron will be blocked until 9:00 am on Thursday. Any addition or reduction of time given to blocks will be made with the discretion of library staff.

Information for Course Directors/Instructors

Request an item

Fill out the Book Reserve Request Form to place items on reserve.

  • Please provide adequate time for processing: at least a couple of weeks prior to the start of your course
  • Please note that items must be requested to stay on reserve for each academic period – they do not remain automatically
  • What to include:  
    • instructor name
    • course title
    • item format (i.e. book),
    • item's title, author, publisher, date
    • preferred number of copies (the number of copies is determined by the anticipated use of the item) 

Personal Copies

To lend or donate a personal copy of an item that you would like placed on reserve, please bring it to the Library Service Desk with a completed Reserve Request Form. Be sure to write your name and contact information inside any book you are placing on reserve and indicate on the form whether we may mark it for processing, which included the attachment of circulation tape, barcode, and a card pocket to the inside and outside covers. If you prefer that your materials not be marked, we will try to make other arrangements. These requests usually take a week to process, but may take longer in busy times.