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Library Services: InterLibrary Loan

InterLibrary Loan, or ILL, allows Allen Memorial Library patrons to request and borrow books, articles, and other materials from thousands of participating libraries. Take advantage of this service to borrow anything you need or want that we don't own.
Simply request items from other libraries using your online library account. When your materials arrive, you will be notified by email. Then return the materials to AML by the due date just like any other library book!

Common ILL questions:

How long does it take?
Shipping and processing times vary widely.  For emailed articles loaned from within North Dakota, it can be as little as a day, while books and other physical items often take 5+ days. 
What does it cost?
Nearly all requests are free of charge. In very rare instances, other libraries may charge before lending their materials. Each online ILL request form asks whether or not you are willing to pay to borrow the material. Mark yes only if you are willing to pay added fees. We will contact you before finalizing any request that requires payment.
Can you get any book or article?
Not everything is available through ILL.  Rare or original materials and reference books are almost never available for loan, and a few journal articles are almost impossible to track down.  However, most things you find in a library catalog or a database can be borrowed!
I'm a distance student; can I get ILL materials through the library?
Allen Memorial Library offers Interlibrary Loan services to all VCSU students. We are able to ship the items we receive to you. However, the added shipping times will reduce the amount of time a distance student will be able to have that item checked out. As a result, students who find themselves in this situation may find it useful to consult local libraries for their ILL offerings instead of requesting them through VCSU.
Many public libraries offer interlibrary loan to their patrons, and quite a few public colleges and universities will offer community borrowing cards. Make sure to ask these institutions whether they offer interlibrary loan, and if so, if they charge any fees per item. While VCSU does not charge for ILL materials, many other libraries offset costs by charging a nominal fee per item. Occasionally, these fees can be significant -  $25+ per item - so be sure to ask about any fees before you request materials.

If you cannot find a library that offers interlibrary loan in your area, Allen Memorial Library can ship ILL materials to you. Indicate in the Notes field of the Interlibrary loan form that you would like the item to be mailed to you at a specific address.
Allen Memorial Library can also ship our own materials to you. Simply fill out a Distance Loan Request online.

Please be aware that the item will be shipped from the lending library to Allen Memorial before being mailed to your location, which will reduce the total allowable time that you will be able to use the item. You will also be responsible for paying for the return shipping of the item to Allen Memorial library.

Locating Articles

While the library offers a large collection of full-text electronic journal titles, our collection is not comprehensive. To search for additional articles, enter your search criteria into the Articles Primo search. If you do not find what you are looking for, select the “Expand My Results” option on the right-hand side of the Primo limiters menu:

Image of Primo search screen showing location of Expand my Results button

Choosing this option will allow you to view additional articles. Once you locate the article you are looking for, select “Check for available services” to view your options. In most cases, the article will be unavailable in our collection, and you will need to sign in and click Resource Sharing.
You will then see a form similar to the book request ILL form. Check that the information is accurate, make changes as needed, and submit your request.

Finding and Requesting a book within North Dakota

Access our webpage and search for the item you are looking for in our catalog. If you can't find it, expand your search by selecting All ODIN Academic Libraries in the drop-down menu.

Image showing location of All ODIN Academic Libraries button on Primo search page

Choose an item and click on the item's title to open the item record.
If you have not logged into your library account, click Sign In.
  • VCSU Student, Staff, and Faculty members should select Login using: NDUS, and on the following screen, log in using your username and password.
Once you have logged in, you should see a Resource Sharing link; click it.  The form will be automatically filled, so unless you need to make any changes, you will just need to click Send Request and you're set.  You'll be notified by email when your book or other item arrives.

Can't find your item in ODIN?  Try Worldcat!

If you can't find an item in the ODIN catalog, don't worry! We can often borrow items from around the country through Worldcat. Worldcat is a catalog operated by OCLC that lists materials owned by participating libraries around the world.

To request an item from Worldcat:
  • Search in Worldcat for a subject, author, title, etc.
  • Click on the hyperlinked title (just as you would in our catalog) to open up the item's record.
  • Copy down that information, and fill out a request using an online form in your library account (below).

Requesting an ILL Using a Blank ILL Form

If you know basic bibliographic information about the book or article you wish to request (such as title, author, publisher, etc.) and you want to request the book for pick up at VCSU, you can fill out a blank ILL form online:
  • Login to your account by clicking My Account.
  • You should be prompted to enter username and password. VCSU students, staff, and faculty will log in using their NDUS username and password. Community users will use their library card this is the number on your library card. In the password field, enter your last name.
  • Once you have logged in, click on Get Item from Elsewhere, and select either Article or Book.  Select Articles if you would like a copy of a journal article. Select Book to request anything else.