Interlibrary Loan

Helpful hints and information to make the ILL process easy!

ILL Policies and Process

Who is eligible to use the ILL services at DeWitt Library?
All students, faculty, faculty emeriti and staff are eligible to use interlibrary loan. Community patrons are encouraged to use the interlibrary loan services of their local public library.

How are fines assessed on overdue ILL items?
Overdue materials are subject to a $10 late fine. Three separate automated overdue notices will be sent. Upon the third notice the student will be blocked from requesting items through Interlibrary Loan and a hold will be placed on the student’s Northwestern account. Once the fine has been paid and the materials returned in the ILL office, the block and hold will be removed from the accounts.

How will I know when my ILL materials have arrived?
You will receive an automated email from ILL notifying you that the item has arrived.

Where do I pick up my ILL materials?
The circulation desk at the library holds the ILL materials.  Tell the worker your name and they will check out your materials.  If you had an article it will be delivered directly to your ILiad account.   Log in and click on the transaction number for the article and it will take you to your PDF formatted article.

Where do I return my ILL materials?
Place them in the book return at the circulation desk or the after hours drop box.

How much does ILL cost?
Generally there are no fees for requesting items through Interlibrary Loan.
If an item can only be obtained from a library that charges a lending fee, you will be contacted as to whether to pay the fee or cancel the request.   
Items 3 weeks overdue are subject to a $10 fine. You will be blocked from using Interlibrary Loan and a hold will also be placed on your Northwestern account until either the fine is paid or the book is returned. If an item can only be obtained from a library that charges a lending fee, you will be contacted as to whether to pay that fee or cancel the request.

Are any items hard to find?
While the ILL office tries to get everything you need, some items are more of a challenge to receive.  Typically DVD's, videotapes, dissertations, theses, rare documents, and new materials can be hard to obtain.  Please allow extra time for these type of items.

Is there a limit to the amount of requests I can make?
The ILL office will process ten requests per patron per day.  If you need to request more, please contact the ILL Coordinator for special permission.

How long does it take for an item to arrive?
Books: about a week.
Articles: about 1-3 days.
Some items will take longer than others depending on availability at the lending libraries.  Please make sure to leave yourself enough time.

How will I know when my item has arrived?
When an item arrives, you will be notified through an automated email sent from the ILL Office. The email will also let you know about lending restrictions that the item may have.

Where do I pick up and return my items?
Items can be picked up at the circulation desk. They should also be returned at the circulation desk or can be set in the overnight book drop. Articles will be delivered directly to your Interlibrary account.  To retrieve articles, sign in and on the main page look for the box titled Articles Currently Available to View.

How do I request a renewal?
On your Interlibrary Loan account page, click on 'Checked Out Items' under 'Renew'. Click on the transaction number of the item you'd like to renew, then click the 'Click to Request Renewal' link above the transaction information. You will receive a follow-up email notifying you of the result of your request.

Who do I contact if I have problems or questions about Interlibrary Loan?
Contact the Interlibrary Loan office at (712) 707-7311 or e-mail