Copyright Law & Reserves

Some materials may be protected by copyright law (Title 17, United States Code) as "Fair Use". Learn more about Fair Use at the Copyright Resources Office. Items may be placed on course reserves with copyright permission pending. If copyright permission is subsequently denied, faculty are informed and the material is removed from Course Reserves.


The following Electronic Reserves and Copyright Procedures have been established by George Mason University Libraries:

  • Faculty may be limited by the number of copyrighted articles which may be digitized for electronic reserves for each course.
  • Entire out-of-print books will not be digitized.
  • Fair Use may apply for the digitization of up to three (3) articles from a single periodical volume, as long as these articles have not been previously placed on electronic reserve, been part of a course pack, or are already available in a library database.
  • Students must login to Blackboard with their username and password to view electronic materials.  This ensures that materials are available only to authorized users. 
  • Electronic reserves are not searchable by title, author, subject, or keyword. Documents are accessible on Blackboard.
  • The full bibliographic citation must be visible on the first page of each document.
  • At the end of each semester, an electronic reserve document will become inaccessible.


For more information about Course Reserves, please contact

For questions about fair use and using copyrighted works, please contact the Copyright Resources Office in Fenwick Library.

Questions about the system software should be directed to the Digital Programs and Systems Office.