The Syllabus Service assists faculty and staff at the University of Toronto with making course readings available to students, while respecting Canadian copyright law and U of T licensing agreements and policies. This service is also available to students enrolled in approved independent study/reading courses.
Currently, the U of T libraries are open online and the Syllabus Service is being offered remotely.
Physical course reserves have reopened
- Most central libraries' physical course reserves have reopened or will be soon
- We are once again able to place items on physical course reserves
- If you had previously placed items in physical course reserves, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will prepare to do so once again
- We will also do our best to acquire an electronic copy
Acquiring electronic versions
- Our staff will continue prioritize acquiring electronic versions of texts that instructors would typically place on physical reserves
- There are however, many challenges when it comes to replicating physical reserves in an electronic context
- Please read our statement on these challenges
Other service adjustments due to COVID-19
- Priority service dates waived for Fall 2021 term: Send your reading lists as soon as you can, and our staff will begin processing them. We accept reading lists at any time.
- Required readings only: Due to increased demand on the service, we will provide required readings only. Recommended or supplemental readings will only be provided if specifically requested
- Processing times: In order to provide the same level of service to all instructors, readings for the early weeks of each course will be prioritized. Readings for later weeks of the course may be added after the course start date.
Pending reopening of physical spaces for Fall 2021: We will place print items in the course reserves collection of your preferred library – if open – for the duration of the course.
Using our collections: Our library staff will work with you to identify materials from our extensive digital collections that will support your course reading lists.
Acquiring e-content: We do our best to acquire any digital content needed, such as e-books, streaming audio, and video through purchase and other vendor agreements.
We regret that not every request will be able to be fulfilled. For example, publishers do not make some types of e-books, including most textbooks, available for purchase by libraries.
Copyright clearance: We will review your course materials for coverage by the University of Toronto's Fair Dealing Guidelines or an existing license, and negotiate copyright clearance for any items that exceed these.
Scanning book excerpts: We will retrieve print books from Robarts Library and other available UTL collections, and scan excerpts to support your required readings. Book excerpts are provided in compliance with Fair Dealing Guidelines or permissions from the rightsholder.
Requests for streaming media: If your list contains audiovisual material that you require in streaming format, please submit your requests using this form.
Easy access for students: Your readings will be made available in the Library Reading List app in Quercus as a single list of your assigned course materials, providing students with easy access to articles, ebooks, chapter/excerpts, web links, and media resources, in one place.
Providing material for you to upload on your own: If you request this, we will email you the PDF files of scanned journal articles or book chapters for you to post yourself into Quercus or a similar password-protected course management system.
- The library will be using a new reading list application called Library Reading List to prepare course reading lists as of Fall 2021
- The new application streamlines access to a wide variety of course and library materials for students and instructors by being closely integrated with Quercus and our library resources
- The submission instructions, and instructions on how to make the finished readings visible to your students, are described below
Email your syllabus with full citations – including page numbers, when applicable – to email@example.com as a Microsoft Word document, a PDF, or a rich text file. Please include:
- Course name and course code
- Your name and contact information
- Course start and end dates
- Number of students in your course
Please also let us know:
- If you have access to any print items on your reading list
- If you will be assigning something for an exam
- In your email, clearly indicate to our staff whether your course has used our syllabus service before
- Our system saves information from past course instances; therefore, the information can be copied and updated to save time and ensure that readings are copyright compliant.
- Also let us know if the course code has changed – include a revised syllabus if available.
- We will contact you about any copyright concerns in your syllabus.
- We will negotiate copyright clearance for items that exceed our current licences and fair dealing guidelines at no cost to you.
- If a resource cannot be made accessible, Library staff will let you know as soon as possible. Please be aware that it may take a few weeks to determine if something is available.
Your readings will be available in the Library Reading List app as a single list of the assigned course readings.
NEW! Accessing your assigned readings:
While the new Library Reading List application is already installed in Quercus, it must be made visible to students by the following these steps:
In your Quercus course menu, click SETTINGS – look for it at the bottom of menu.
Click on the NAVIGATION tab.
Click on and drag LIBRARY READING LIST up from the list of hidden navigation items, to the list of visible navigation items in the top half of the list. Place it where you would like it to appear in the course menu.
Save your choice.
Students will now have access to the Library Reading List app in their course side navigation bar.
For more information on Library Reading List and instructions on how to add the app to your Quercus page, visit http://uoft.me/quercus-course-reserves.
NOTE: If the readings fail to appear, be sure that you have selected LIBRARY READING LIST not LIBRARY COURSE RESERVES or LIBRARY RESOURCES.
If you or your students are experiencing access issues, please let us know.
If you are not sure where to send your reading list, email firstname.lastname@example.org and we can redirect your list to the appropriate library.
Libraries on the St George campus that offer a syllabus service with different submission points are:
- Department of Physics Library
- D.G. Ivey Library (New College)
- E.J. Pratt Library (Victoria University)
- Engineering and Computer Science Library
- John M. Kelly Library (St. Michael's College)
- John W. Graham Library (Trinity College)
- Mathematical Sciences Library
- Milt Harris Library (BIC Connects)
Libraries at colleges and professional faculties are also able to assist when course requirements are better supported by specialized library collections or local course reserve services.
Please visit the individual websites of these colleges or faculties for contact details.
Syllabus Service data collection
Data from course outlines sent to the Syllabus Service will be used for the purposes of providing and improving University of Toronto Libraries’ services to its user groups.
Access to this information is limited to University of Toronto Libraries staff who require the information to perform their job duties. This information will not be shared with third parties.
–Last updated August 16, 2021.