Student Research Productivity Workshops

Research doesn't have to be overwhelming! Learn how to increase your productivity and improve your coursework. Drop in, no need to RSVP.

Need Research Help?

Search our FAQ for answers to the most common library questions. Or ask a new question and receive an answer via email.

Find Subject Specific Help

Search DiscoverLibrary

FindIt@VU

ILL Q & A

What is Interlibrary Loan?

Interlibrary Loan or ILL (sometimes also called interloan, document delivery, or document supply etc.) is a service provided for a library user to borrow books or get copies of articles owned by another library. You ask your own library, such as Vanderbilt, which then completes the order for you if possible. This service is offered at no cost to you as a part of Vanderbilt and is generally quite responsive in turn around time.

Who can make an ILL request?

Vanderbilt faculty, staff, and currently enrolled students.

What can I request?

We can usually borrow from other libraries what can be checked out here: books,  reprints, scores,conference proceedings, etc.. Microforms, newspaper back files, dissertations, and government documents. We can request copies of journal articles and many other items that cannot be borrowed.

How long does it take?

This service turn around always depends on the library who is supplying the item requested. It is not uncommon for journal articles to arrive in your mailbox in less than 48 hours. Yet don't count on that as the service processes requests as they arrive and there is no anticipating demand. You should try to determine your needs early, and time your requests to allow for delays and to avoid receiving more than you can use in the time allowed for loans.  A good rule of thumb:  Budget at least two week for receiving an ILL request.

What does it cost?

There is no back charge to as the requestor and this service cost is absorbed by the Vanderbilt Library.