InterLibrary Loan Service

About This Service

InterLibrary Loan (ILL) is a service provided to help Cardinal Stritch University students, faculty and staff obtain materials for course related projects that are not owned by us and not available through the SWITCH consortium. ILL staff will try to locate and obtain items for you from another library.

Materials available within the SWITCH consortium should be requested through TOPCAT, the consortium's shared catalog.

The conditions of ILL services are set by national and regional codes as well as by the policies of each lending library. The following materials ordinarily are not available through an academic ILL service:

  • Material not related to scholarly research or instructional programs
  • Textbooks listed on the current semester textbook list
  • Books needed for an entire semester
  • Books that are on Reserve or part of a library's Reference collection
  • Entire issues or volumes of periodicals
  • Most audiovisual items (videos, DVDs, CDs)
  • Current-year publications
  • Multi-volume sets
  • Rare or fragile items

Textbooks & InterLibrary Loan

Like most academic libraries, the Stritch library is generally not able to purchase textbooks. Library funds are limited and therefore, our priority is to purchase books and materials that supplement and enhance coursework and research.

Of those libraries that do purchase textbooks, their textbook collection is usually reserved only for use on their campus and items are not usually loaned to other libraries.

Books are generally loaned for 2-3 weeks. The loaning library, not the Stritch library, sets loan dates. Renewals are not always allowed by the lending library. When a renewal is allowed, it is usually allowed only once for a brief extension of 1-2 weeks. Interlibrary loans are subject to immediate recall by the lending library; the lending library has the right to recall an item for use by one of its own faculty or students. Textbook loans are not feasible under limitations such as these.

Please refer to the University bookstore to obtain textbooks. Interlibrary loan is not a textbook service and should not be relied upon to fill your textbook needs.

Making Requests

How do I make requests?

Requests for materials not found in the SWITCH consortium are made through a service named ILLiad (InterLibrary Loan internet accessible database). Learn more about getting started and about using ILLiad.

How many requests can I make?

  • In order to provide fair and equal service to all potential users, up to 8 items can be ordered per person per day.
  • If submitting more than 8 items in one day, prioritizing is suggested. If not prioritized, requests will be handled based on effective use of time by ILL staff members.
  • No user may have more than 20 active transactions at any one time. An active transaction includes an item on order, a book that has been loaned, and a renewal request for a book.
  • Users with overdue ILL loan materials will not have any additional ILL materials ordered for/given to them until the overdue ILL loan materials have been returned.

How long does it take?

  • Articles and book chapter requests are usually delivered electronically within 1-3 days.
  • Books: Be sure to allow adequate time for the verification, processing and delivery time from the lending library. Requests usually arrive within 7-10 days. Some items may arrive more quickly and some may take longer, depending on distance and method of delivery from the loaning library.

How much does it cost?

  • Books, copies of books chapters, and photocopies of articles from periodicals and journals can usually be obtained at no cost to the user. The Stritch library absorbs most borrowing fees.
  • We make every effort to borrow from institutions that do NOT charge for ILL services. At times, we have no choice but to request items from institutions that do charge. If the fees to obtain an item will be excessive, you will be contacted before your request is processed to approve or deny any costs at your expense.

Receiving Materials

How do I know when my material has arrived?

You will be notified via the email address that you specify when you create your ILLiad account that your material has arrived.

How do I get my material?

  • Books

    • Books are held for pick-up at the Stritch library circulation desk.
    • Remote patrons can have books shipped directly to them. You are responsible for returning books by the due date to the Stritch library, including any shipping costs.
  • Articles and Book Chapters

    • Articles and book chapters are usually delivered electronically and are retrieved by logging into your ILLiad account and choosing the Electronically Received Articles menu item. A PDF version of the material will be available for 30 days.

Print Copies

Occasionally a print copy of an article will be provided instead of an electronic one. In this case, the article will be available for pick-up at the circulation desk, or mailed directly to you if requested.

Reasons why a print copy may be provided:

  • Copyright Law or the Copyright holder prohibits electronic distribution.
  • Questionable text or image quality would not allow for scanning of the article.

How long can I keep the Interlibrary Loan?

  • Photocopied or electronic copies of journal articles – yours to keep.
  • Books – generally 2-3 weeks. Materials may be recalled at any time.
  • Dues dates must be observed and adhered to, so that Stritch Library remains in good standing with other lending libraries and can continue to borrow from them.

Can I renew items?

Renewals are generally not allowed, however on request, ILL will contact the lender who will either approve or deny the renewal request.

  • Renewal requests must be submitted at least 2 business days in advance of the due date, but not more than 7 days prior to the due date.
  • A renewal may only be requested once per item and is dependent upon approval by the lending library. The item is to be returned on time if the renewal is denied.

How do I return books?

  • Drop in a Stritch University Library bookdrop.
  • Return via first class U.S. Postal Service (USPS), United Parcel Service (UPS), or FedEx. Please do not use USPS Library or Media rate; though inexpensive the delivery time is too long. Directions for returning a book are attached to the borrowed item.