Want to know more about our Interlibrary Loans Service?

What is the ILL service and how does it work?

The ILL service (or Interlibrary Loans service, to give it its full name) allows you to request material that University of Glasgow library does not hold in stock but is required for your research/study. Most UK libraries and many other libraries around the world offer this service to their users as a means to obtain material that would not otherwise be available. Each library has its own policies for the type of material it is able or willing to supply. We always use British Library as our first port of call, as they have over 87.5 million items available to be borrowed from their stock. They can provide loans of books, photocopies of journal articles, conference proceedings, reports, or even music  scores. If British Library are unable to supply an item, we then have to look elsewhere to see if we can find other libraries who hold what we need and check availability. We will always initially opt for a copy of a book to be supplied for home reading but sometimes this is not possible and we may only be able to obtain a copy of a book that has to be consulted only within our library. This isn’t always the most convenient option therefore we will only request an item that is likely to be ‘for consultation only’ as a last resort.

How much does it cost?

We borrow approx 300 books per month from British Library, and many others from other locations both within the UK and abroad. Although the service is free for you to use, the library pays on average between £12.00 – £20 per item. Most books will be available for loan for approx 3-5 weeks. If you require the book longer, it may be possible for us to request an extension of the due date. The lending library will charge a reduced fee for this additional loan period (currently £4.55) and as the library paid the initial loan cost, this additional fee (or renewal charge) will be passed on to you. It is extremely important that books are returned on time as the lending library may charge us for items returned late. Overdue fines on ILL books are charged at £1 per day to ensure any additional costs are covered.

How many books/articles can I request?

There is no limit to the number of books/articles you can request however, we would ask that you bear in mind the cost of obtaining each item and only request material that is necessary for your research/studies. Due to the increased number of items requested and not collected/consulted, from 1st August we will be introducing a charge of £5.00 for any item that is ordered but not used.

How do I contact the ILL service if I have any queries?

You can contact ILL staff via email at dds@lib.gla.ac.uk

Categories: Library

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