The libray purchases textbooks upon instructor request. If your instructor has not done so already, they may submit a Course Reserves request.
Course reserves are instruction materials (e.g. assigned textbooks, DVDs) made available through the library upon instructor request. Typically these materials have a shorter circulation period than other materials, so that multiple students may have access to them.
It depends. Individual publishers establish allowances and restrictions. While there some exceptions, publishers typically do not allow e-textbooks to be purchased and circulated by libraries. Follow these steps to determine whether UW Libraries has your textbook as an ebook.
In most cases, textbooks on reserve will circulate for 2 hours. Textbooks that are not on reserve have variable loan periods.
You may find previous editions in the library collection, but you should check with your instructor to determine whether it is an appropriate substitute.