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Interlibrary Loan and Resource Sharing

Resources sharing services for accessing materials from other institutions.

Frequenly Asked Questions

What is Interlibrary Loan (ILL)?  

ILL is a service that allows you to borrow materials not available at Alfred University from libraries at other institutions.  

What types of materials are available?

We will attempt to borrow whatever material you need, with the exception of textbooks which are not available through interlibrary loan.

Items that are usually easier to borrow:  
Books; articles from journals, magazines, or newspapers; government documents; technical reports.

Items that can be more difficult to borrow:
Books published in the last year; theses and dissertations; reference books; rare books and manuscripts; entire volumes of journals; multi-volume sets; audio-visual material including movies and music; items held by a very small number of libraries; standards; unpublished papers.

Some requests take more time than others. If you have questions about whether the library can obtain the item that you need, please contact  

Is there a charge for Interlibrary Loan?

In almost all cases, the library covers the cost of interlibrary loan and there is no charge to you. In rare cases where the cost of the interlibrary loan transaction exceeds what the library is willing to pay, we will contact you before we order the item to find out if you are willing to pay the additional cost.

How long does it take?

Article requests take an average of two business days; book requests take an average of four to seven days. Rare or hard to find items, or requests submitted with little or incorrect information take longer to process.

How do I make a request?

If you found the item via Primo (the Alfred University Libraries search interface)

Follow the prompts in Primo to log in for access options. Log in using your Alfred University username and password, and follow the prompts to request from another library or request via Herrick / Scholes interlibrary loan. Most of the information needed to make an ILL request will be filled into the form for you. Verify that the information is correct, supply any additional information, and submit the request.  

If you found the item via another source (Google Scholar, following a citation, another website, etc.)

Log into the Herrick or Scholes interlibrary loan site: Interlibrary Loan Login. Fill in the item request form (article or book) with as much information as possible. Providing more detailed information will help speed the processing time for requests.  

How will I know when the materials have arrived?

You will receive an e-mail when your requested item is available.  

How will I access the materials I requested?

If it is a book, you will be asked to pick it up at the Herrick or Scholes front desk, depending on which ILL interface you used (you will need your ID to pick up the book). If it is an article, you will log in to the relevant ILL site where you can view the article electronically.

We are subject to any restriction placed on the item's use by the lending library. For some books the lending library may request that they be used in the library only.

How long can I keep the materials?  

Electronic articles are available in your interlibrary loan account for 30 days. Loan periods for books may vary depending on the terms of the lending library and can range from two weeks to a whole semester (for SUNY Resource Sharing). Most books can be renewed once by logging on to your interlibrary loan account, although the lending library has the right to deny a renewal request.

How do I renew items?

To view instructions with screen shots, view the document "Renewing Resource Sharing Items" below.

  1.     Log on to your account on Primo.
  2.     Select your account in the upper right hand corner and click "My Loans" from the drop down menu.
  3.    Identify the item you would like to renew, and click "Renew."
  4.     Renewals for resource sharing require approval and you will receive a message letting you know that the approval is pending.

Your request will go directly to the lending library.  You will be notified by e-mail as to the new due date or if the renewal was denied.

What do I do if I received an overdue notice and I still need the item?

If you received an overdue notice, please return the item right away.  

In order to maintain good relationships with our lending libraries, we must return their items on time. If you do not return the item, you will be charged for the cost of replacing it. If you still need the item, we will attempt to borrow a copy from another library.  

We reserve the right to suspend interlibrary loan privileges to patrons who repeatedly ignore interlibrary loan policies and procedures, including consistently returning items late, damaging materials, or not returning items at all.