What is Borrow Direct?
When you quickly need items that are currently unavailable from the University of Chicago Library or are not owned by the Library, search Borrow Direct.
Borrow Direct enables you to search for and request books directly from the 10 major research libraries of the Ivy League universities, MIT, and the Center for Research Libraries, with combined collections of more than 50 million volumes.
For more information, see the Library News feature on Borrow Direct.
Advantages of Borrow Direct
Search and request books from the Ivies and MIT libraries.
Receive books in approximately 4 business days (faster than recalling or interlibrary loan).
Keep books longer than with interlibrary loan.
Extensive collections containing more than 50 million requestable volumes.
Frequently Asked Questions
Who can use Borrow Direct?
- Current University of Chicago faculty, students, and staff
How do I use Borrow Direct?
How quickly do requests arrive?
- Books usually arrive in approximately 4 business days.
- An email notification is sent once requests are available.
Loan Periods & Renewals
- Loan period: 12 weeks
- No renewals
- Items may be recalled by lending libraries.
Borrowers will be notified by email if an item is recalled because it is needed by the lending library.
Fines & Blocks
Standard borrowing policies (including fines and account blocks) apply to overdue Borrow Direct items.
What can be borrowed?
You may request circulating materials that are either:
- Not owned by the University of Chicago Library
- Currently unavailable from the University of Chicago Library — checked out, missing, on reserve, or on order
If an item is available at the University of Chicago Library, Borrow Direct will display the call number and location of the item and direct you to the Library Catalog to help you find our local copy.
If all copies held by Borrow Direct libraries are unavailable, the service enables you request the item from a non-Borrow Direct library via Interlibrary Loan. (Loan periods and delivery times for Interlibrary Loan requests will vary.)
Which libraries participate in Borrow Direct?
- Massachusetts Institute of Technology
- University of Pennsylvania
- Center for Research Libraries