When the Library Doesn't Have What I Need
Don't panic! Even though the library might not have the specific book or article that you need for an assignment, we can get it for you using a service called interlibrary loan or ILL.
What Do I Need for an ILL Request?
All you need is your VUnet ID and password, and the citation information for the resource you are requesting. Just click on the link below and login to the library's Interlibrary Loan Service.
Need help? Ask a librarian!
Interlibrary Loan FAQ
What is Interlibrary Loan?
Interlibrary Loan or ILL (sometimes also called interloan, document delivery, or document supply etc.) is a service whereby a user of one library can borrow books or receive photocopies of documents that are owned by another library. The user makes a request with their local library (in this case Vanderbilt's Heard Library), which, acting as an intermediary, identifies owners of the desired item, places the request, receives the item, makes it available to the user, and arranges for its return.
Do I need to use ILL?
ILL is an optional service. Most undergraduates are able to complete their research assignments using the resources available at the Vanderbilt Libraries. Occasionally the resources you need for a research assignment will not be available. That's when ILL can come to the rescue.
Who can make an ILL request?
Vanderbilt faculty, staff, and currently enrolled students.
What can I request?
We can usually borrow from other libraries the kinds of materials that would circulate here: books and reprints, scores, proceedings, etc.. Microforms, newspaper back files, dissertations, and government documents often are available, but may need special handling. Periodical volumes, reference books, rare or fragile items, videotapes, and very old or very new imprints cannot normally be borrowed. We can request copies of journal articles and many other items that cannot be borrowed.
How long does it take?
Locating and receiving books and articles usually takes a few weeks or less, but sometimes takes several months or longer. Service may be slower during busy times, and we are limited in the number of items we can process at once for a single patron. 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 weeks for receiving an ILL request.
What does it cost?
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