Borrowing and Returning Library Materials
- What is an Interlibrary Loan (ILL)?
- Who may use Interlibrary Loan?
- What materials are available through ILL?
- How long does it take?
- How many items?
- How much will it cost?
- How long may I keep my ILL?
- How will I know it is here?
Libraries cooperate to advance scholarship and learning by lending books and other library materials to each other. The Ron E. Lewis Library offers this service to supplement the library's collection. As such, it is not intended to be used as a substitute for materials already in the collection. If an item is currently checked out, consider "placing a hold" on it, asking to be notified when it is available.
Since we depend upon other libraries to supply an item, there are no guarantees that an Interlibrary Loan request will be filled. Therefore every effort should be made to use this library's resources first before requesting material from other libraries.
Interlibrary Loan requests can be placed online with a minimal amount of information. Completing the Interlibrary Loan Request Form allows ILL staff to locate and request the items for you. Incomplete forms will cause delays as the staff attempts to contact the requester for more information.
ILL service may be used by LSC-O students, faculty, staff.
Lending libraries determine what materials they will lend. Types of materials normally obtained through ILL include books or documents such as reports and photocopies of articles from magazines, journals, newspapers and reference books. Microform items may sometimes be borrowed, such as older newspapers on microfilm.
Materials normally NOT available through ILL include materials in special collections (rare or fragile books), journal or magazine bound volumes and print periodical issues, reference books, government documents and media items (audio/visual materials, records and CDs). Each lending library has its own policies about what they will lend.
We process the ILL request the same day it is received. The length of time for materials to arrive depends on completeness of request forms, response time of the lending library and transit time, usually by U.S. mail. A range of five to ten working days is needed to process and receive each request. Always plan research to allow extra time for ILL requests.
Patrons are limited to 20 outstanding ILL requests at one time. In addition, only five requests per patron per day, up to the limit of 20, will be processed.
Many libraries in the state and region have ILL borrowing agreements, and there are no fees or photocopy charges. If the requested material is only available from a library that charges a fee, staff will notify the patron.
Loan periods for books are set by the lending libraries. Any other restrictions are also set by the lending library and not Ron E. Lewis Library and will be strictly enforced. If a renewal is needed, the patron should contact the ILL library staff person at (409) 882-3065 at least four days ahead of the due date. Renewals are at the discretion of the lending library. Photocopies of magazine or journal articles need not be returned. Please make every effort to return borrowed items before their due dates.
When the material arrives, the patron will be notified by e-mail or telephone. Material may be picked up at the check-out desk on the first floor of the library. The time the material sits in the library is part of the loan period, so it is to the patron's advantage to pick up the material promptly upon notification.