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User Services : Interlibrary Loan

Welcome to the Houston Cole Library's User Services Page

Contact the Interlibrary Loan Department

Contact us at (256) 782-8490 or

Interlibrary Loan Request Form

Interlibrary Loan Policy

See the Interlibrary Loan section on p.79 for more information.

Welcome to Houston Cole Library's Interlibrary Loan Department

Interlibrary Loan (ILL) is available to faculty members, administrative staff, staff, and currently enrolled students. Privileges may be extended to retired employees at the discretion of the Supervisor of User Services, Head of Library Services, or the Dean of Library Services.

Interlibrary Loan (ILL)

Interlibrary Loan Service (ILL) is available to faculty members, administrative staff, staff, graduate students, and undergraduate students engaged in thesis or senior paper research.

  Are there any items which I should not request through ILL?

Borrowers should not ordinarily expect to obtain the following materials:

  • Items currently available should be requested for purchase.
  • Periodicals (single issues, bound volumes, or microform volumes).
  • Reference works.
  • Rare books or manuscripts.
  • Newspapers in their original format and other bulky or fragile materials.
  • Doctoral dissertations or Masters' Theses.
  • Audio-Visual materials (audiocassettes, videotapes, DVDs, slides, sound recordings, etc.).
  • Duplicates of titles which are in the library collection, regardless of format or circulation restrictions.

  Are there any copyright restrictions with Interlibrary Loan?

Systematic copying of copyrighted materials is not permitted. However, for Interlibrary Loan purposes where there is no intent to substitute copying for a subscription to or purchase of a work, certain copying is considered fair use. The Commission on New Technological Uses of Copyrighted Works (CONTU) copyright guidelines are summarized as follows:

  • Periodicals published within the current calendar year and the previous four calendar years are covered by the guidelines. The concept is known as the "rule of five." Periodicals older than five years are not addressed by the guidelines, but they are not to be considered fair game for unlimited copying. Copyright term is still in effect. Section 108 or 107 criteria apply.
  • During a calendar year, no more than five copies total may be requested and reproduced from any single periodical title (NOT single issue) without paying appropriate royalties.
  • A library may request an item that it currently owns through Interlibrary Loan if its copy is currently unavailable (e.g., at the bindery, lost, etc.).
  • A library may also request a loan if the periodical is currently on order.

  How can I request materials through Interlibrary Loan?

Fill out the Interlibrary Loan request form completely with full bibliographic information.

  How much does the Interlibrary Loan service cost?

Every effort is made to request materials without incurring charges for the user. However, when requesting a periodical article or book, the borrower will assume all charges incurred, even if the requested item arrives after their research is completed or they no longer require the information. A space is provided on the ILL request form for indicating the maximum charge that is acceptable to the ILL patron.

  How long will it take to receive materials requested through Interlibrary Loan?

The length of time involved in obtaining a loan varies considerably. However, the average loan will arrive in one to three weeks from the date the ILL request is received.

  What happens when the materials I requested through Interlibrary Loan are available at the JSU Library?

Borrowers will be notified by e-mail when the material they requested arrives. They should pick-up the material in the Lobby at the Circulation Desk or the ILL Office as soon as possible.

  How long can I keep material received through Interlibrary Loan?

Loan periods are determined by the lending library and usually range from 2 weeks to 28 days.

  Am I able to renew material received through Interlibrary Loan?

Renewals are granted only in exceptional cases. If special circumstances make requests for renewal necessary, then the borrower should notify ILL personnel at least four days before the item is due.

  Where do I return materials received through Interlibrary Loan?

Items borrowed through Interlibrary Loan must be returned directly to the Lobby ILL Office. When the office is closed, ILL materials will be accepted at the Circulation Desk in the lobby. Items should not be returned through the mail.

  What are the overdue fines for Interlibrary Loan items?

The Interlibrary Loan Office will send an overdue notice for delinquent items. A fine of $1.00 per day per item will begin to accrue 5 days after the date of notice if the items have not been returned. The charge will apply to all ILL patrons. Failure to pay fines may result in the loss of ILL borrowing privileges.