9 Course Reserves & Leganto Reading lists

In some cases, the expensive, traditional textbook might be the best fit for your class. While the Library is happy to help you hunt for an alternative, we do have other options that can still help lower the cost of textbooks for your students.

Course Reserves

Course Reserves are electronic and library resources selected by instructors to support student learning. [1] Typically, instructors might think of course reserves for physical materials like books. The Library is happy to provide a physical copy of a textbook for as many classes as possible. If your class uses a traditional textbook, make sure to reach out to the library to have a physical copy placed on hold. Please note that because this model only provides one copy of a text to one student a time, it is not a way to qualify a course for zero cost course labeling.

Another way of using course reserves is to create a digital reading list using Leganto, our Canvas integrated reading list platform. Licensed content like articles and e-books can be added to faculty created and curated reading lists, which are then integrated into the associated class. Courses where the entire required reading is available as a Leganto reading list are eligible for Zero Cost course designation.

Some faculty may choose course materials where the library already offers an unlimited seat e-license as part of our regular collection – these courses that pull from the unlimited seat licensed resources freely available to students via the University of Idaho Library catalog will be eligible. Faculty are encouraged to create a digital Leganto course reserve for classes like this so the Library can better track which resources are being used as required reading materials.

To learn more:

  • Visit the Course Reserve Listings and look for your course by instructor, term, or subject.
  • Click on the course name to view a list of all items on reserve.
  • To access electronic reserve items, students will have to sign in using their NetID.[2]

You can learn more about instructor driven course reserves and requests items to be reserved by visiting the Library course reserves page here. 

Student Driven Course Reserves:

Unlike traditional course reserves which are directed by teaching faculty, Student Driven Course Reserves allow students to request a particular text be purchased by the Library and placed on course reserves. This allows for students to put supplemental materials on reserve, reducing their textbook costs. Requested books must be designated as required in the course syllabus. Requested titles may not include supplemental readings or books recommended for course research projects or further reading. Students can request textbooks or materials be placed on reserve through this request form.

Controlled Digital Lending:

Controlled Digital Lending (CDL) allows for previously inaccessible texts to be made available in digital format, provided that specific requirements are met. At a minimum, to be eligible for CDL, an item must not have an e-license readily available for institutional purchase. Once an item is digitized, it can only be offered with particular restrictions (usually a limited number of digital seats to access to the item as well as possible time and location restrictions). Most items will not be eligible for CDL because they will have an e-license available, but this can be a viable option for select texts. This is a new program launched in 2021, and more details can be found here.

Liaisons as Open Partners:

The Library liaisons program pairs each college with its own library faculty member, who provides disciplinary expertise as a subject librarian. As part of identifying student access and affordability as a key strategic goal for the Library, Library liaisons are skilling up in Open Educational Resources and Open Access publishing in their disciplines. Library liaisons are well-situated to individually partner with course instructors to integrate Open textbooks or other Open Educational Resources into their classes. To find out more about which liaison serves your college please visit the Library’s Subject Liaisons page here. 

More on Leganto Reading Lists

Maybe you don’t currently use a textbook in your course. Or, perhaps you’re thinking of giving up textbooks and instead crafting reading lists. You might even have a reading list already that you share with students by uploading files directly into Canvas. Instead, consider working with the library to create a Leganto reading list.

In 2021 the Library launched a new course reserves system, Leganto, which features enhanced options for integrating course reading lists directly into Canvas. This new system allows for instructors to opt into having a library reading resource list, where they can easily add new content. Once items are selected, the list is submitted to Library personnel who can then secure appropriate permissions including connecting with Liaisons for potential purchasing of e-licenses. Students get the benefit of having one central location for a course’s materials – materials on the web appear right alongside Library access articles and eBooks. Professors can also design a course that uses partially open materials as well as licensed materials in a Leganto reading list, all appearing to the student in one easy to access course materials list embedded in the classes Canvas installation.

Feedback from instructors shows that Leganto is intuitive to use with a low barrier to entry and has significant benefits for teaching and learning.

These benefits include:

  • Reduced workload for instructors
    • Reading lists can be saved and reused across semesters
    • Ability to create multiple reading lists in draft form allows instructors to work at their own pace
    • Autonomy in developing, changing, updating, and saving course lists
  • Improved student experience
    • Centrally located course materials
    • Affordable, equitable access to library-purchased materials
    • Interactive platform increases student engagement
  • Seamless library integration and support
    • Add library subscriptions, open education resources, popular media, and multimedia
    • Get expert support for help with copyright, accessibility, and other questions
    • “Cite It” feature allows direct import for readings wherever, whenever[3]

If you are interested in pursuing a Leganto installation in your course, please visit the links below to learn more:

  • Leganto workshop video
  • Curating a reading list guide,
  • Contact libreserve@uidaho.edu for personalized help
  • Leganto getting started instructions and FAQs ]

  1. Course reserves. University of Idaho Library. (n.d.-a). https://www.lib.uidaho.edu/services/reserve/
  2. Reserves policies. University of Idaho Library. (n.d.-b). https://www.lib.uidaho.edu/services/reserve/policies.html
  3. Leganto - Integrated Course Reserves. University of Idaho Library. (n.d.-a). https://www.lib.uidaho.edu/services/reserve/leganto.html


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Open at the University of Idaho Library Copyright © by Tyler Rodrigues and Marco Seiferle-Valencia is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.