Who Can Use Interlibrary Loan?
Interlibrary Loan is available to current University of Chicago:
- Faculty spouses and domestic partners
- Alumni with current borrowing privileges
- Proxy borrowers for faculty members.
Requested books usually arrive within 8 business days.
Requested articles usually arrive within 3 business days.
Arrival times may be quicker or longer depending on the availability of the item and who is supplying it. An email notification is sent once requests are available.
Loan Periods & Renewals
Loan Periods & Renewals
Loan periods and number of renewals vary based on policies set by the lending library.
Requests for renewals can be submitted online through your Interlibrary Loan account. A two week renewal grace period will be granted while we contact the lending library to obtain a renewal request on your behalf. Approval of renewals are at the discretion of the lending library.
Items can be recalled by the lending library. Borrowers will be notified by email if an item is recalled.
Fines, Blocks, & Lost Items
Overdue items are subject to fines, account blocks, and lost item fees as outlined in the borrowing policies.
Faculty and academics with indefinite borrowing privileges may request to establish another person as a proxy borrower through the ID & Privileges Office.
This privilege is intended to help faculty in their research work for the University, not for any other purpose.
To request a proxy borrower or renew an existing proxy borrower account, use the Proxy Borrower Request form.
What is Interlibrary Loan?
When you need items that are currently unavailable from the University of Chicago Library or are not owned by the Library, submit an Interlibrary Loan request. Interlibrary Loan enables you to obtain items for your research from libraries around the world.
What Can Be Borrowed?
You may request books, articles, book chapters, dissertations, theses, microforms, videos, CDs, DVDs, and conference proceedings that are:
- Not owned by the University of Chicago Library
- Currently unavailable from the University of Chicago Library -- checked out, missing, on reserve, or on order.
Items that are difficult to obtain through Interlibrary Loan include imprints prior to 1800, loan requests for current publications, entire journal volumes, reference materials, textbooks, rare books and original manuscripts, genealogy or heraldry, and audiovisual material.
How many ILL requests can I make?
For students, faculty, and staff there is no limit on the number of Interlibrary Loan requests you can submit.
For Alumni who have purchased borrowing privileges, there is a limit of 10 concurrent requests.
Interlibrary Loan Tips
Current imprints and materials needed for extensive use should be suggested for addition to the Library by submitting a purchase request online.
Interlibrary Loan requests are not transferrable to another user's account and may only be picked up by the requestor.
Information for Obtaining Dissertations or Thesis
The Library provides access to most dissertations produced after 1996 digitally through the ProQuest Dissertations & Theses database. This database also provides abstracts of theses and dissertations from 1861 to present.
The Library's Interlibrary Loan Department has agreements with the Big Ten schools and the Research Libraries Group's SHARES members (Cornell, Penn, Princeton, Stanford, Yale, etc.) to borrow dissertations written at these institutions. Other U.S. and Canadian dissertations may sometimes be available for loan. Many foreign dissertations are owned by the Center for Research Libraries. The Center will accept orders for foreign dissertations not already held by them, but obtaining the dissertation may take up to 9 to 12 months.
Interlibrary Loan offers the service, Dissertation Express, for University of Chicago students, faculty, and staff wishing the office to purchase dissertations on their behalf. The cost is $33.00 for an unbound paper copy ($30.00 for a PDF), and items are shipped to us from UMI within 5-7 working days. Order forms are available from the Customer Service Assistant at Regenstein Circulation or service desks in any of the departmental libraries. Prior to the Library's ordering the dissertation, payment must be received at the Customer Service Station at Regenstein Circulation, unless paying by credit card. For further information, please contact the Interlibrary Loan Office at 773-702-8706 or via email at Interlibrary-Loan@lib.uchicago.edu.
You can also purchase a U.S. or Canadian dissertation directly from UMI using the Dissertation Hotline (1-800-521-3042). Dissertations are available in any of the following formats: microform, paperbound, or hardbound. The cost varies by format from $32.50 to $43.50 prepaid. Delivery is to your address in approximately 30 working days.