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Interlibrary Loan (ILL) Borrowing Policies & Procedures

Additional policies and procedures exist that might be applicable.

The Interlibrary Loan (ILL) Department supports the research and educational needs of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette community by providing access to materials not held in Dupré Library's collections. The department conducts all transactions in accordance with the Louisiana Interlibrary Loan Code, the National Interlibrary Loan Code, the American Library Association Interlibrary Loan Code, and U. S. Copyright regulations.

Hours of Operation

Monday – Thursday

  • 7:30 a.m. - 4:45 p.m.


  • 7:30 a.m. - 12:15 p.m.

After-hours, ask at the Reference Desk.

Borrower's Responsibilities

Materials obtained through Interlibrary Loan (ILL) are for the exclusive use of the individual submitting the request.

Borrowers are responsible for returnable materials from the time the materials are picked up until they are returned to the ILL Office or the Reference Desk. Any charge resulting from damage to materials or improperly returning materials is the responsibility of the user.

The individual borrower is responsible for any infringement of the Copyright Law regarding materials on loan from other libraries.

See: Costs


The Interlibrary Loan (ILL) Department assists and supports the research needs of the current University of Louisiana at Lafayette faculty, students, staff, and retirees who are engaged in research.

Blocked library records must be cleared for service.

Undergraduate Students

Undergraduates requesting materials other than articles must have an ILL Undergraduate Privileges form, approved and signed by a current faculty member, on file. The faculty member accepts responsibility for all materials obtained on behalf of that student.

Undergraduates may contact the Reference Desk for assistance in finding materials available at the University Libraries.



There is usually no charge for borrowing returnable materials. If the lending institution charges for returnable materials, the Interlibrary Loan (ILL) staff obtains the user's agreement to pay those charges before submitting the request.


There is always a non-refundable $2.00 handling charge to support article delivery. It is drawn from the user’s Cajun Cash account at the time the request is handled. If the lending institution requires any payment, the ILL staff obtains the user's agreement to pay those charges before submitting the request.

Users are responsible for the following:

  • Borrowing and copyright charges
  • Rush order charges
  • All charges resulting from late return, loss, damage or mutilation of materials while the borrower is responsible for the material
  • Non-refundable invoice charges for overdue and lost books from other institutions

ILL accepts Cajun Cash, Departmental Charge Account, or money order. Cajun Cash is the default method of payment.

Departmental Charges

Users approved by Department Heads for this method of payment should type “Departmental Charge” and their departmental account number in the Notes field of the request form.

A Department Charge Approval Form is provided for your convenience to assist you if your department requires that you obtain approval.

Before Submitting a Request

Check the Library Catalog

Before ordering, make certain the library does not own the material you are requesting by using the Library Catalog. Interlibrary Loan (ILL) does not order materials owned by the University Libraries. If the item is not on the shelf or in use by another user, contact the Circulation Desk regarding recalls, traces, and/or holds. If the Circulation Desk determines that the item will not be available in time to meet your needs, inform the ILL staff.

Consult the Reference Desk

A librarian at the Reference Desk can assist you in determining if the material, or similar material, can be found locally or in electronic format.


Requests are handled during the ILL Department Hours of Operation on days when the library is open. For holidays, view Library Holiday & Special Hours.

To avoid having materials held in transit, the ILL Office stops requesting returnable materials, print, and microform in early December. ILL starts handling requests for those formats when the University reopens in January.

Materials that Usually Can Be Borrowed
  • Materials not owned by the University Libraries
  • Books/monographs, government documents, proceedings, technical reports microforms
  • Theses and dissertations when circulating copies are available
  • Photocopies of journal articles, book chapters and similar publications within copyright
Materials that Usually Cannot Be Borrowed
  • Materials owned by the University Libraries
  • Reference, genealogy, reserve, archival and special collections materials
  • New books or current year publications
  • Periodical issues or volumes, some proceedings, and technical reports
  • Textbooks, materials for class, reserve or group use
  • Maps, fragile, rare or valuable materials, pre-1900 materials
  • Software and computer programs, audiovisual materials, film and microforms


The Interlibrary Loan (ILL) Department does not limit the number of requests an individual may submit per day. Depending on the total volume of requests, the ILL staff may be able to handle a limited number of requests from one user per day.

Starting a Request
Completing a Request
  • Submit one request per item desired.
  • Submit accurate, complete citation information.
    • Citations should contain all available bibliographic information, including the complete title.
    • Ask a librarian at the Reference Desk to assist with title abbreviations.
  • Provide the citation source (where you found the citation) to assist in the verification process.
    • If found in printed material, note the title, volume, year, page number, and any other pertinent information about the source.
    • For citations from electronic databases, note the database name as well as keywords used in your search.
  • Provide the International Standard Serial Number (ISSN), International Standard Book Number (ISBN), or another identification number, if available.
  • Always address “Will you accept the item in a language other than English?” and “Not Wanted After Date” on the ILLiad request form.
  • Have $2.00 in your Cajun Cash Account for each photocopy (article) requested.
  • Use your University email address as your ILLiad contact.
  • When materials arrive, the ILL staff notifies users by email or by phone if necessary.
Reasons for Delays/Cancellations
  • The citation is incomplete or contains incorrect information.
  • The request has to go to many libraries before one supplies the item.
  • No library is willing to supply the material.
  • The material is new or not yet published.
  • The material is in high demand.
  • The item is a textbook, especially if currently used by the University.
  • The material is rare, such as an archival collection, historic document or a dissertation with no circulating copy.
  • The material is published and primarily held in foreign countries.
  • The material is available at the University Libraries. In this case, the ILL staff cancels the request and notifies the user. If the material is not on the shelf, the borrower may ask the Circulation Desk to initiate the trace/hold or recall/hold process.
  • The borrower does not have sufficient funds in his/her Cajun Cash account to cover processing charges.
Length of the Borrowing Process

Readily available books usually arrive in the ILL Office within two weeks. Readily available articles usually are delivered electronically shortly after receipt when the office is open.

It is sometimes a challenge to find an institution able and/or willing to lend a specific item. Unfilled requests remain active until the "Not Needed After Date" or until all lending institutions have been exhausted.


Check the status of requests through the ILLiad system.

See: Explanation of ILLiad Borrowing Statuses

Unavailable Materials

When materials are not available through ILL, the ILL staff may suggest visiting a library in Louisiana, or they may suggest an alternate item. A librarian at the Reference Desk can assist in finding other materials to complete research projects.

Special Conditions or Terms

All loans are subject to terms and conditions set by the lending institution. "Library Use Only" materials must be used in a specified area, usually the Reference area or the Jefferson Caffery Reading Room. "Library Use Only - Archives or Special Collections" materials must be used in the Jefferson Caffery Reading Room. While using any "Library Use Only" materials, the user's current validated University of Louisiana at Lafayette ID must be left with the monitoring department. Notify the Interlibrary Loan Department or the monitoring department when you no longer need the materials, so they can be returned.

Article (Photocopy) Requests

The Interlibrary Loan (ILL) Department maintains reciprocal agreements with many libraries. Articles available from reciprocal providers require no payment other than the $2.00 handling charge. If an article is available only from a non-reciprocal institution, the ILL staff emails the user for invoice approval. When the user replies to approve the additional charge, the ILL staff submits the request to the providing institution.

Article Delivery

Articles are primarily delivered electronically via a link and password emailed to users via their University email account. If for some reason, we cannot deliver your article electronically, the method of delivery will default to hold for pick up at the Circulation Desk.

Commercial Providers

Commercial providers must deliver materials for:

  • Requests for rushed/next-day delivery that cannot be met by normal providers within the allotted time. Most commercial document delivery providers offer 24-hour delivery.
  • Request(s) that exceed copyright limits
  • Requests that exceed the library's annual copyright limit for a journal title
  • Requests that the Head of Interlibrary Loan, Assistant Dean, Associate Dean or Dean decides should be requested through a document delivery service

ILL staff notifies users via email. Users are responsible for all costs.

For a list of commercial document delivery services, go to Commercial Document Delivery Providers.

Book & Book Chapter Requests

On the Book request form include the author(s), complete title, edition, publisher, place, publication date, and ISBN, if available. Providing the ISBN expedites a request. Publisher, place/date of publication and edition are important, as some books have several editions and publishers.

If you are willing to accept any edition, note that on the request form.

Conference Paper/Proceedings & Technical Report Requests

Essential information: Title of the paper or report, author, organization, date, and place. Enter additional information in the Notes field of the request form.

Conference proceedings and technical reports may not circulate dependent upon the holding institution’s policy. Organization, date, place, or any information available should be noted and will assist us in filling your request.

Dissertation & Thesis Purchase

Dissertation and thesis loans are handled as books. See: Book & Book Chapter Requests

Search the library database: Dissertations & Theses A&I (ProQuest). ProQuest offers the full-text of some documents and sells dissertations and theses directly to users in six formats, including PDF for immediate download.

Using UMI's Dissertation Express, ILL can order print copies of many dissertations for users to keep. An unbound, shrink-wrapped copy is delivered within 3-4 working days. Payment must be made before the request is submitted.

Individuals may use a major credit card to purchase a dissertation directly from UMI. Call (800) 521-3042, visit the ProQuest Dissertations & Theses website, or obtain an application from the ILL Office.

Newspaper/Microform Requests

Request form: For specific articles, use the Photocopy request form. For newspaper content that covers more than one article, use the Book Request form. This may be loaned in microform format.

Essential information: Title, city, and state of publication, date(s). Several cities publish newspapers with the same title. Enter additional information in the Notes field of the request form.

Some institutions do not loan microfilm, microfiche, microcard, and other microforms. When provided, all microforms are "Library Use Only" and must be turned in daily.

Patent Requests

Use the Book Request form.

Patent requests must include the patent number and should include language and country.

The cost per patent averages $15.00 to $20.00 but may run higher. Users are responsible for all costs. Include the maximum you are willing to pay in the Notes field of the request form. If the cost is more than the stated maximum, the ILL staff will email users for approval before submitting the request.

Standards Requests

Use the Book Request form.

Essential Information: Title, agency, year of publication, and standard number. Enter additional information in the Notes field of the request form.

Returning Materials

Return Locations

All materials must be returned directly to the Interlibrary Loan Office or the Reference Desk.

Returns are not accepted at the Circulation Desk, in the book drop or the mail.

Due Date

Interlibrary Loan materials should be returned on or before the due date indicated on the paper book strap that is attached to the front of the material. This fine is in addition to any fines or fees assessed by the lending institution and will not be waived.


Every effort should be made to use materials in the time allowed by the lending institution. Lending institutions sometimes grant a renewal. Apply for renewals within 5 days of the due date using the ILLiad system. ILLiad does not allow renewals outside of this 5-day period, renewals of overdue materials, or second renewals.


All loans are subject to recall by the lending institution and must be returned immediately if recalled. Failure to return a recalled item by the given date may result in charges accruing at an accelerated rate.

[ Last Revised on April 16, 2020 ]