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Interlibrary Loan

Interlibrary Loan (ILL) Office borrows materials from and lends materials to other libraries in the United States and many other countries.

We will endeavor to fill requests as quickly as possible, but due to reduced staffing levels there may be some delays.

Due to COVID-19 measures taken by other campuses, lending libraries may have staffing and/or copying & lending restrictions in place which can cause additional delays.

  • Estimated turnaround times:
    • Articles & Book chapters 3-5 days
    • Entire Books 7-14 days. ILL books are physically shipped, usually by the U.S. Postal Service.
  • Items may arrive sooner depending on how quickly the lender processes & sends an item, and how far an item needs to travel (for books). These times are estimates and cannot be guaranteed.
  • For books: Use MERLIN and MOBIUS when possible - they can usually be processed & shipped more quickly than interlibrary loan books.

What We Do

The Interlibrary Loan (ILL) Office borrows materials from and lends materials to other libraries in the United States and many other countries.

ILL handles requests for:
  • copies of articles and book chapters
  • requests for books not available at UMSL or through other MERLIN/MOBIUS libraries
  • requests for books and articles in the ITE storage area

All current UMSL faculty, staff, and students are welcome to use ILL services.  If you have any questions, please contact us at (314) 516-5066.

Important Notes

Before requesting an item through ILL, please:
  1. Check in-house resources (MERLIN/MOBIUS/Prospector catalogs, electronic subscriptions, and databases) before requesting materials via ILL
  2. Limit requests to ten or fewer per week so we can process all requests in a timely manner.
  3. Understand that requests take time to process and fill. If you choose to enter a "Need By" date, the system will automatically cancel and delete your request when that date passes.  Most people should not use that option.

Having problems with Interlibrary Loan requests?