Interlibrary loan

Borrowing policies

About interlibrary borrowing

  • Interlibrary loan is a transaction in which library material, or a copy of the library material, is made available by one library to another upon request. When library materials are not available in the University Libraries, library users may request those items through Document Delivery Services. An interlibrary loan transaction has two components: borrowing and lending. This policy addresses the borrowing component.
  • University Document Delivery Services abides by the American Library Association's National Interlibrary Loan Code for the United States, 2001 and the specific policies of lending libraries. In addition, Document Delivery Services complies with the Copyright Act of 1976 (Title 17 of the United States Code) and guidelines developed by the National Commission on New Technological Uses of Copyrighted Works, known as the CONTU guidelines, as described in the Library of Congress' Copyright Publication number 21.

Eligible users

  • Library users with valid University of Nevada, Reno library cards may use the service as follows:
    • University of Nevada, Reno faculty, staff, graduate students, and undergraduate students are eligible for the service.
    • Nevada System of Higher Education (non-University of Nevada, Reno affiliated) faculty and staff may use the service for $3 per request plus any associated fees.
    • Community Borrowers may use the service for $10 per request plus any associated fees.

What can be requested

  • With the exception of the items listed below, most library materials, such as books, newspapers on microfilm, and photocopies of periodical articles, may be requested providing that those materials are not already owned by the University Libraries.
  • Materials owned by the University Libraries that display in the Library Catalog as being checked out, missing, long overdue, billed, or at the bindery may be requested.

What cannot be requested

  • Materials are loaned at the discretion of the lending library.
  • High use materials may not be available. Materials with current year imprints are not always available.
  • The following items are usually not available for loan: rare, fragile, or valuable materials; audio-visual materials; computer software; reference materials; entire issues or volumes of periodicals; and non-circulating items.
  • Textbooks for current university classes will not be requested.
  • DDS is unable to supply copies of entire issues of journals due to the cost of purchasing royalty-paid articles. Users may be asked to prioritize and limit needed articles from a single issue. Exceptions will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.
  • Some universities do no lend their masters theses and doctoral dissertations. Document Delivery Services staff will check universities' policies to determine whether theses and dissertations can be borrowed. Most dissertations are available through the online database ProQuest Dissertations & Theses located on the Libraries' web site.

Copyright information

  • On occasion, library users will submit several requests for photocopies of journal articles from a single journal title during the course of the year. Document Delivery Services operates under copyright law guidelines, known as the CONTU Guidelines, which prohibit the library from requesting more than five articles within a calendar year from any one journal title published in the previous five years. Filled requests over the five-article limit are subject to royalty fees. Document Delivery Services will pay royalty fees to the Copyright Clearance Center or purchase the article from a commercial vendor, if possible. If neither of these options is available, Document Delivery Services may not be able to obtain the article .
  • Additionally, the CONTU Guidelines "Rule of Two" limits the user to one article from a single issue of a journal published within the previous five years. The library may choose to pay copyright royalty fees for one additional article on a case-by-case basis.

Number of requests allowed per user

  • Our online requesting system allows users to have a limit of 99 active requests at any one time. The Document Delivery Services staff make every effort to process requests in a timely manner, however during peak periods of research activity by our users, a limit of 20 requests processed per week per person may be set.

How to place a request

  • University of Nevada, Reno faculty, staff, graduate students, and undergraduate students can place requests through the Library Search or use their  NetID to log on to the ILLiad website to request materials
  • NSHE faculty and staff (non-University of Nevada, Reno) can put in requests by emailing or by filling out a paper ILL request form in person at the Access Services desk.
  • Community Borrowers must use the paper ILL request forms and submit them in person at the Library Services Desk during open Library Hours.

Fees for services

  • Interlibrary borrowing and document delivery services are provided to active University of Nevada, Reno faculty, staff, and students at no cost to the requester.
  • NSHE faculty and staff (non-University of Nevada, Reno affiliated) are charged $3.00 per request for books and periodical articles plus any associated fees. Associated fees may include copyright clearance and charges assessed by lending libraries for borrowing materials or supplying photocopies, or charges billed by commercial document delivery suppliers.
  • Community Borrowers are charged $10.00 per request for books and periodical articles plus any associated fees. Associated fees may include copyright clearance, charges assessed by lending libraries for borrowing materials or supplying photocopies, or charges billed by commercial document delivery suppliers.

How long it takes to receive materials

  • Books and other returnable materials typically arrive within 1-2 weeks.
  • Materials requested from international libraries should arrive within several weeks.
  • Periodical articles and book chapters typically arrive within a week.

Notification when materials arrive

  • Document Delivery Services notifies users when materials arrive via e-mail, phone, and text message depending on preferences stored in their library and/or ILLiad account.

Delivery options

  • Materials may be picked up at the Knowledge Center Library Services Desk.
  • Articles are delivered electronically to the University of Nevada, Reno user's ILLiad account.
  • Faculty, staff, and graduate students may request ILL books to be delivered to their Campus Mail stops. A current building code and room number must be listed in the user's ILLiad account and will need to be manually updated by the user if the information changes.

Checkout periods for borrowed materials

  • Lending libraries set the loan periods and conditions for use of their materials.
  • Renewals are sometimes available. Users can request renewals within their ILLiad account or contact Document Delivery Services for assistance.

Overdue fines

  • When borrowed, if materials are not returned when they are due, the user will be assessed an overdue fine of $1.00 per day until the materials are returned. This fine will be charged automatically to the user's main library account.

Lost or damaged materials

  • Users are liable for the replacement or repair costs of materials in their possession if loss or damage occurs.
  • The replacement cost for a lost or damaged book is determined by the lending library.

Distance education services

  • Distance Education students are eligible to receive delivery of materials such as books and journal articles from the University Libraries' collections. In addition, for articles needed that are not available here, we will order articles from other libraries via interlibrary loan. To receive the services, Distance Education students must register with ILLiad, the interlibrary loan/document delivery system. Requests can then be made using the ILLiad request forms. Students need a University of Nevada, Reno Library Card to register. Please check with your instructor about receiving a library card.

Policies for the distance education services

  • When registering in ILLiad, please select the status "Distance Education", fill in your complete mailing address, and select "Mail to Address" for both the loan and article delivery choices. Please be sure to enter your current e-mail address.
  • Requests for library-owned materials will be processed within 2 working days.
  • Article requests will be delivered electronically via ILLiad.
  • We are not able to supply books from other libraries.
  • Requested books will be checked out on your library card and sent to you through the U.S. Postal Service. They should be returned to the library in the same packaging at your expense. You will be responsible for materials lost in the mail, so it is a good idea to insure books for $75 each.
  • These services are provided without fees to University of Nevada, Reno Distance Education students and faculty.

Responsibilities of the library user

The User will:

  • Before requesting interlibrary loan materials, check the Libraries' collection using the Library Search discovery tool. Ask Reference staff for help when needed.
  • Provide accurate citations for the materials being requested. Check online and paper indexes to verify citations when possible. Journal title abbreviations should be submitted as is--do not guess their meaning.
  • Plan ahead. The interlibrary loan process takes time.
  • Pick up materials in a timely manner. Materials obtained through interlibrary loan are typically checked out for at least four weeks from the time the user is notified that the materials have arrived.
  • Return materials to the Knowledge Center Library Services Desk or the Document Delivery Services office when they are due. Overdue fines of $1.00 per day will be billed to the user's main library account if materials are not returned on time.
  • Keep materials safe while they are checked out. If lost or damaged, you are liable for the replacement or repair costs as billed by the lending library.
  • Comply with the fair use section of the Copyright Act of 1976 (17 USC 107) as stated on each interlibrary loan request form.
    • The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code), governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material. Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction. One of these specified conditions is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be "used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship, or research." If a user makes a request for, or later uses, a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of "fair use," that user may be liable for copyright infringement. This institution reserves the right to refuse to accept a copying order, if, in its judgment, fulfillment of the order would involve violation of copyright law.

Noncompliance with these policies may result in the suspension of interlibrary loan privileges by the University of Nevada, Reno Libraries.

Library responsibilities

The University Libraries' Document Delivery Services will:

  • Abide by the National Interlibrary Loan Code of the United States, 1993 and specific lending policies of lending libraries.
  • Comply with the Copyright Act of 1976 and the CONTU guidelines as described in the Library of Congress' Copyright Publication number 21.
  • Process requests in a timely manner.
  • Keep users informed of the status of or problems with their requests.

Conditions of service

The conditions of this service are set by the Dean of Libraries.