Caltech is no longer using AdoptaText for faculty, instructors, and staff to place textbook orders. We are moving this service to our Canvas platform under the "Course Reserve" tab for each course. 

However, orders for purchase will still be sent to MBS Direct, an online bookstore. Students are free to purchase their books from MBS or any other bookseller.

The same "Course Reserve" tab can be used to request course reserves. For Winter 2020 and on, the Library is providing digital course reserves and all physical reserves will be housed at Sherman Fairchild Library only. Materials will circulate for 24 hours, then remain quarantined for 24 hours upon return.

  • Note: If you have not used the "Course Reserve" tab in Canvas it may not be visible under your "Home" options. In order to "publish" click on this short video for easy step-by-step instructions.

Since physical books on course reserve will be unavailable to students studying from home, the Library will attempt to acquire a digital copy whenever possible. When none is available for purchase, the Library can digitize up to 30% of any physical books and make it available under the "Course Reserve" tab in Canvas. If more is than 30% of the book is required, please contact us at coursereserves [at]

Additionally, during the COVID-19 crisis the Library has an expedited process for acquiring and providing access to audiovisual materials for online classroom and class-related use.

  • If a requested item is available from a commercial streaming service, the Library will license access for campus use.
  • If a requested item is only available in physical form (e.g. DVD, Blu-ray), the Library will acquire the item and make it available online, for classroom and class-related use only.
  • Click here for additional information. 

DocuServe request should only be used for individual research requests. Any material that your students will need to access for your courses should be requested via Canvas' "Course Reserve" tab. Scanned reserves requests will be made available in Canvas at the start of term. Please note that scanning requests are subject to applicable copyright mentioned above.

If you have any questions or would like one-on-one assistance on how to publish and/or submit Course Reserves, please contact us at library [at], and we will be happy to help you.

How to Submit Required Textbooks for Purchase by Your Students and/or Course Reserve for Winter Classes:

Once Logged into Canvas


  1. Click on your “Courses” book Icon (on the left hand side of the screen):

  2. Select the course you would like to add course reserve items to. 

  3. Under your home tab Click on “Course Reserves

  4. Click on:                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
  5. Click what type of item you would like to be placed on course reserves and/or purchased by your students.                                                                                                               
  6. At the top of each request you will be asked to indicate whether the item is required for purchase by your students. The default is always set to “No.”                                 

  7. Make sure you fill out all the sections marked with an asterisk*

  8. And click on "Submit Item" button at the buttom of the page once you’ve completed your request. 


If you have any questions/concerns or just need assistance please feel free to always contact us at anytime at coursereserves [at]





Page Last Updated 2020-10-30