Indiana University Northwest
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John W. Anderson Library

John W. Anderson Library

Interlibrary Loan FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

IU Northwest offers full interlibrary loan (ILL) privileges to all students, staff, and faculty of IU Northwest. We also offer ILL privileges, on a limited basis, to IU alumni and community members.

ILL service is governed by the Interlibrary Loan Code of the American Library Association, the policies of the lending libraries, and federal copyright law (U.S. Code Title 17).

More information can be found by choosing on the links below

When should I use ILL?

When IUN does not own a particular book or journal article, we may be able to borrow the material from another IU library, another library in the state, in the country, or somewhere in the world. This service is carried out by the library's System Services department.

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Who may use ILL?
  • Current students, staff, and faculty of IUN.
  • Students from other IU campuses.
  • Any IU alumni or community member, with the following limitations:
    • The item must be available within the state of Indiana
    • Material(s) that we have to go outside the state will be available with a $10.00 charge per request. Additional fees may apply.
    • You may be limited in the number of requests you may submit.
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What can I get through ILL?

You can get almost anything you need or want through ILL. Examples include: books, videos, journal articles, newspaper articles, dissertations, and more.

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What can't I get?

There is no set answer for this. As a general rule of thumb, you probably cannot borrow books held only in Rare Books collections. Most libraries will not lend current best-sellers or new textbooks. You usually cannot borrow an entire issue of a journal, or an entire volume of a journal. It's usually difficult to get reference books. While we will try and get you whatever you need, ultimately we can only borrow what some other library is willing to loan.

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How long does an ILL request take?
  • On average, it takes 5-10 days for books and articles to come to IUN. The material is delivered by UPS.
  • It may take longer if the material comes form another state or from outside the IU system.
  • System Services will contact you by telephone or by mail when your material arrives.
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Why was my ILL request delayed or cancelled?

An ILL request may be cancelled on delayed when:

  • No library is willing to supply the material.
  • No library owns the material.
  • The material is in especially high demand, such as current best-sellers or new textbooks.
  • The request has to go to many libraries before one agrees to supply the item.
  • The material is especially rare - an historic document or a dissertation.
  • The material is published and primarily held in foreign countries.
  • Your request contained incorrect information. Without accurate author, title, date, and publisher information it is frequently impossible to fill a request.
  • You requested material already available at IUN. If we verify that such material is actually on our shelves, your request will be cancelled.
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How can I check on the status of my ILL request(s)?

On weekdays, you can call the System Services office at 980-6933or 980-6935. You can also stop by the office - located in Room 147.

In the evenings and on weekends, you can call the Reference Desk at 980-6582 to check if your journal (photocopy) request(s) are available. For book requests, you should contact the Circulation Desk at 980-6585.

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How long can I keep an ILL book?

The loan period for ILL varies; loans are set by the policies of the lending libraries.

The due date is indicated on the circulation slip in the book. While renewals are possible, they are at the discretion of the lending library. You should come to the System Services office (Room 147) or call the office at 980-6933 or 980-6935 to request renewals.

Because our ability to borrow depends on the goodwill of other libraries, the due dates must be honored. Repeated disregard for due dates can result in the suspension of your borrowing privileges.

A lending library may discover an urgent need for material that it loaned us. In this situation they may recall the material. Failure to return material promptly will result in a $25.00 fine.

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Are there restrictions on my use of ILL material(s)?

The IUN Library is bound by any restriction on use imposed by the lending library. Some libraries require that the materials they lend be used in the borrowing library only. Some do not allow photocopying. Some require the signature of readers of unpublished dissertations. The borrower should not let others use the books he/she secures on loan unless special arrangements have been made.

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How do I place an ILL book request?
  1. Before requesting a book, check IUCAT to make sure that IUN does not own the item.
  2. Fill out an ILL Book Request Form (the white sheet) for each item you are requesting. Make sure you include complete and accurate author, title, publisher, and date information. The forms are located near the Reference Desk.
  3. Leave the completed request form in the box next to the ILL forms.
  4. You will be notified by telephone or mail when each item arrives.
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How do I place an ILL photocopy request?
  1. Before requesting a photocopy, check IUCAT to make sure that IUN does not own the journal and date that you want.
  2. Fill out an ILL Photocopy Request Form (the yellow sheet) for each article you are requesting. Make sure you include complete and accurate information. The forms are located near the Reference Desk. Complete information means:
    • Journal/magazine name
    • Volume and issue number
    • Date of article
    • Page number(s)
    • Complete title of the article
    • Author's name
    • The source of your information. This speeds up the verification process.
  3. Read the Copyright Notice on the back of the form, and then sign the form. Your signature indicates your compliance with all copyright restrictions. The library cannot process your request without your signature on each form.
  4. Leave the completed request form in the box next to the ILL forms.
  5. You will be notified by telephone or mail when each item arrives.
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Where can I pick up my material when it arrives?

You can pick up photocopies at the Reference Desk. Books are held at the Circulation Desk.

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What can I do if I can't wait?

While we do everything we can to get materials as soon as possible, there isn't much we can do to go below the 5-10 day period. If you need something faster than that, there are a couple of things you can do if you need material that we don't own. You can locate the material at other libraries in the region by using WorldCat, available through the WWW on campus or through IO from home. If a library in the region owns what you need, you can go directly to them for the material. You may be able to borrow the material from them or use it on their premises.

If you need a copy of a journal/magazine article and no library in the region owns it, you can use CARL UnCover, available the WWW on campus or through IO from home. This service will fax you a copy of the article for a fee. The cost is usually $10 - $20 per article and must be paid for with a major credit card. Material from CARL usually takes 2 days to arrive. Some material will be available within a couple of hours - these will be clearly marked in CARL. If you do not have access to a FAX machine, you can ask the Reference Librarian for the number of the System Services FAX machine and use that.

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