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Faculty Library Resources: Interlibrary Loan

Useful services, resources, and helpful hints for faculty.

What is Interlibrary Loan (ILL)?

Interlibrary loan (ILL) is a service whereby libraries borrow and lend books, microfilm, and audio-visual material along with supplying journal, magazine, and newspaper articles for library patrons. 

Materials not owned by McGill Library may be borrowed from or supplied by other lending institutions.

Contact Information

If you have questions about Interlibrary Loan, please contact the Interlibrary Loan Office at 724.946.7049 or mcgillill@westminster.edu.

The Interlibrary Loan Office is located on theground floor of McGill Library, in room G03

Interlibrary Loan Office Hours are Monday-Friday, 8:00am-4:30pm*

*Please note that ILL service is suspended from December 18 to January 5.

Interlibrary Loan Accounts

Interlibrary Loan is a service of McGill Library for Westminster faculty, students, and staff. This service is available to assist eligible individuals in the completion of their curricular or professional research needs.


Registered patrons can access their online accounts here.

New or First-time users can set up an account here.

Submitting and Receiving an ILL Request

Eligible patrons can submit Interlibrary Loan requests for multiple material types through the online form.  

When requesting research materials from other institutions, please have full citation information and check your information for accuracy before submitting your request. Include the source of your citation. If we have a problem with the citation or if the information is incomplete, we may return it to you for further research.

Materials, if available, usually arrive within two to ten days of placing the request.  We will notify you by email when your materials are available.

Articles: Will be available online through your ILLiad account.

Books (and other physical materials): May be picked up at and returned to the LIS desk in McGill Library during any hours that the library is open. An item will only be held for two weeks at the LIS desk.  If the item has not been picked up by the patron within that time, it will be returned to the lending library.

ILL Borrowing Policy

McGill Library will attempt to borrow books, microfilm, audio-visual material, musical scores and/or supply articles for Westminster College students, faculty, staff, administrators and retired faculty.  This service is free to Westminster community.

This service is not provided to the general public.  They should refer to their local public library for assistance.

General Guidelines:

ILL Requests for all materials types are processed in this sequence:

   1.     Students

   2.    Faculty/ staff

   3.    All other requests

The library will not borrow material for students when the research topic can be met using the resources in the local collection.  If that is the case, the interlibrary loan specialist or a librarian will work with the student to find material relevant to the research topic.

The library will not borrow textbooks or required texts to students for classes in which they are currently enrolled.

RENEWALS: if an item is needed beyond the due date, contact the Interlibrary Loan office via e-mail (mcgillill@westminster.edu).  All renewals are at the discretion of the lending library.

A loan item of the same title, date, and publisher cannot be requested twice in the same semester unless under special circumstances. 

Time permitting, the library will attempt to borrow materials that are for non-academic purposes (leisure reading, genealogical material, etc.). The borrower is responsible for any fee imposed by the lending library and will be notified of any charges before the request is processed.

Graduate School & Summer School

1. If a book/ dvd/ musical score/ cd/ microfilm/ book chapter/ journal article is needed from another library, place an interlibrary loan request through ILLiad.

2.  If the student needs the material mailed to their current residence, either an item from our collection or from another library, fill out an interlibrary loan request.  Indicate "OFF CAMPUS" in the Notes section of the request form.  The interlibrary loan department will work with the patron to make sure that they are getting the information needed in the most efficient way possible.

3.  All non-returnable items, (print) journal articles and book chapters, are scanned and sent as a pdf and can be accessed through the patron's ILLiad account.  An e-mail notification will be sent once the article is available.

Overdue ILL Policy

Overdue material:

Fines are assessed at $5.00 a day for material which is borrowed from another institution. 

  1. All interlibrary loan fines must be paid and processed through the Interlibrary Loan Office (8:00am-4:30pm, Monday-Friday). 
  2. Individual accounts must be paid in order for patrons (faculty, students, staff, administrators, and retired faculty) to pick up any new interlibrary loan items. 
  3. At the end of each semester, student fines will be sent to the Business Office and applied to individual accounts.

Lost/Damaged ILL Policy

Lost/ Damaged Material:

Material which WC has borrowed from another institution and which is subsequently declared lost or damaged will be replaced.  The library prepares a bill, listing the replacement costs charged by the lending library.  Under the doctrine of replevin, the library still owns the book and can recover it from the person who paid the replacement fee or a subsequent owner even if the subsequent owner has done nothing illegal.  Legal title does not pass to the person who paid the fee because the library did not intend to sell the item.  The replacement fees are not refunded to the borrowing library.

Copyright and ILL

Copyright Restrictions on ILL Requests

  1. Within any calendar year, Westminster College may not request more than FIVE copies from an individual periodical title published in the current and past four years.  After reaching that threshold, the library will then purchase and/or pay the copyright fees for that title.
  2. If a patron requests an interlibrary loan from a periodical to which WC library already subscribes or owns a copy of the source from which they are requesting, it is treated as though the copy is from the library’s own collection under the regular Library Copying Guidelines.
  3. Westminster College maintains records of all borrowing requests to which these guidelines apply.  These records are retained until the end of the third complete calendar year in which the respective requests were made.
  4. According to Title 17, U.S. Code, a copy or reproduction may not be “used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship, or research.”  
  5. Audio-visual material borrowed through interlibrary loan is restricted to personal or classroom use only.