Library About Policies Interlibrary FAQ


We have resumed processing of physical items through interlibrary services, including the Faculty/Staff Delivery Service. If you are on campus, you can retrieve your item from the Library Service Desk during library hours; if you are faculty or staff who have signed up for on-campus delivery, your items will be delivered to your on-campus address.

PLEASE NOTE: If you are a 100% remote learner, or a faculty or staff working from home, we have initiated a new service to mail your items to your remote address. Please input a viable mailing address into your Illiad account page, located under "Manage Account." Your request will be processed as usual and sent to you, along with a postage-paid mailer for the return of your items to the library.

As a reminder, if you are requesting an article from a journal, please submit your requests in the usual way: under "New Request,” click the “Article" link after logging in. We will do everything possible to get these materials to you as quickly as we can.

If you are requesting a book, and you know the specific chapter(s) that you need, it may be quicker to request an individual chapter which can be sent to you via electronic delivery. Please submit a request(s) by going under "New Request,” and clicking the “Book Chapter" link after logging in. If available, the book chapter will be sent to you as a PDF located under “Electronically Received Articles.” Specific titles for book chapters may be found in the book’s table of contents. If you need help locating a table of contents, or have any other questions regarding finding materials, please feel free to contact a research librarian.


If you need further assistance please contact Interlibrary Services at

For up-to-date information regarding Fairfield University's Library COVID-19 response, including a list of available online resources, please see the DNL blog.

Is there a help document for requesting interlibrary loan items through ILLiad?

Yes, there is a help document located online at ILLiad Interlibrary Loan Instruction document. This document will tell you how to create an account, how to submit a request, and how to check the status of your requests. You can always contact us in-person in the library, by telephone (203) 254-4000 ext. 2135, or e-mail .

Can I submit an ILS request for something our library owns?

If an item is a print book, and the catalog status is Missing, Lost, or Charged Out, then you may submit an interlibrary loan request for the item.   Please indicate in the status (Missing, Lost, or Unavailable) in the Comments field at the bottom of the request form.  

If the status for a print book indicates that it is Available, but the book cannot be found on the shelf, please report this to the staff at the Library Services & Information Desk and they will initiate a search for the item.  If they cannot locate the book within a reasonable amount of time, we would be happy to assist you in obtaining a copy via interlibrary loan.  Just go to Request Material from Other Libraries, submit a Book Request, and indicate in the Comments field that the book is missing.

If the item is an electronic book, but a print copy is preferred, please go to Request Material from Other Libraries, submit a Book Request, and indicate in the Comments field that we own an online version, but you would prefer the print version for reading and/or research.  

If the item is a CD or DVD, and the catalog status is Missing or Lost, then follow the instructions for submitting an interlibrary loan Book Request as explained above.  If the audio-visual item is listed in the catalog as Unavailable then you should NOT place an interlibrary loan request, since it will be returned within the week;  instead, place a hold on the item through your library account.  When the item is returned you will be notified.  Please feel free to contact the Circulation Staff regarding you library account if you need further assistance.

What if a journal is missing or the pages are torn out? Or the microform is illegible?

Occasionally journals may be waiting to be re-shelved, pages removed or at the bindery.  If this is the case, please feel free to submit an interlibrary loan request for the material and indicate the reason in the Comments field.  Poor condition of microform can be an unfortunate possibility; if the material is truly unreadable, submit an Article Request through our system and again, please indicate the reason in the Comments field.

Whether a book, journal article or audio-visual material we will do our best to accommodate your request and get you the resources you need in the most expedient manner possible.  

How can I submit interlibrary loan requests?

Please submit interlibrary loan requests online through  Request from Other Libraries (ILL). This will take you to a Net ID log in page which will then automatically route you to the request form itself. Fill in the citation information - as complete as possible - and include an ISSN number if you have it. If you are using a database with an interlibrary loan request link, often you can simply click the link, log in, and the request form will be populated with the citation information automatically, saving you any need to retype.

How can I check whether a request has been submitted?

You can always check the status of your requests by logging into your account, and clicking View Outstanding Requests. This will tell you whether the request has been sent, processed, or shipped.

How many requests can be submitted at any one time?

Patrons may submit as many requests as they like; however, requests are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Busy times during the semester may add to processing time. Patrons are encouraged to prioritize their requests and send them in as early as possible to ensure timely and efficient delivery.

How soon will I get the items I've requested?

Please allow 2-4 business days for all journal article requests to be processed. (Approximately half of our journal article requests arrive in two days, but this cannot be guaranteed.) Books and audio-visual materials average 7-10 business days, as these are physical items that have to be shipped from the lending library. It is good practice to allow enough time for your requests to be completed, so patrons are strongly encouraged to submit their book and article requests as early in the research process as possible.

How will I be notified when the interlibrary loan items arrive?

An email message will be sent to you as soon as the item is available.  For books, we email whenever possible; all "returnables" - i.e., books or audio-visual materials - are picked up at the Library Services & Information Desk.  Journal articles are uploaded to a secure server which will allow you to view, print, or download the material for a 30-day period.

I submitted ten requests and only received seven. Where are the rest?

Materials arrive at different times from different sources; we will notify you each time an item arrives. Unless there is a problem with the request, rest assured all your requests will be filled in time. Remember, you can always check the status of your requests by logging into your account, and clicking View Outstanding Requests. This will tell you whether the request has been sent, processed, or shipped. Once again, do not hesitate to contact the department if you have any questions regarding the status of your requests.

How long can I keep a book from another library?

Due dates are assigned by the lending library, but most lenders allow a borrowing period of six weeks.

Can I renew an interlibrary loan item?

Renewals can be requested and are most often granted by the lending library usually extending the borrowing period another month, yet there are no guarantees. You can call the department (203) 254-4000 ext. 2135 or e-mail to request an extension. Leave your name and the six digit IL number found on the bookband of the item you wish to renew (for example, IL#: 769473).

Where do I return interlibrary loan books when I am done?

Please bring materials directly back to the Library Services & Information Desk during normal business hours. You are ultimately responsible for the materials you borrow - please be respectful. Do not leave materials in the book drops. Faculty and staff have the option of returning interlibrary loan items through the  Faculty/Staff Delivery Service.

Can I get audio-visual or microform material through ILS?

Some libraries do lend audiovisual materials and microforms and we are able to borrow them, but be aware that these materials can be much more difficult to acquire and at times not possible at all. Also be aware that any of these materials we manage to borrow are often for in-library use only and then must not leave the building.

What if an interlibrary loan request I've made cannot be filled?

We will notify you if that is the case. There are various reasons why we might return a request to you - new, rare, and research materials can be hard to obtain and special libraries may have restrictions on their collection. Be assured we will do our best to fulfill your request.

I need a book/article immediately and interlibrary loan might take too long. What can I do?

In this case, please contact the Library Services & Information Desk for assistance at or at (203) 254-4000 ext. 2188. A Research Librarian can search local library catalogs to see if they hold the material you want, and you can travel there yourself to obtain it. With a library card from your local Connecticut public library you can check out materials from any public library in the state. Remember that submitting ILS requests early is really the most effective way for us to serve you.

I am working for a faculty member and submitting requests. What should I put on the interlibrary loan form?

In the past it has been helpful for the faculty member to contact us ahead of time, alerting us that a designated student assistant will be making requests on their behalf. The student can use their own log in, but please remember to put the faculty member's name and contact information on the form in the Comments field.

Can I order dissertations and theses? What about conference proceedings, or white papers?

Yes, you can make these requests at any time. But please be aware that theses, dissertations and conference proceedings are often hard to obtain. To increase your chances of obtaining this kind of hard-to-get material, please be sure to include the correct title, author, year, and the school granting the degree. Also please note, that "Dissertation Abstracts International" is merely a collection of the abstracts or summaries of the dissertations indexed. It does not contain the full text of the dissertations themselves.  In this case, we would search for the original item and request it directly from the author's school.  Also please be aware that often theses and dissertations may be found in online institutional repositories or else available for purchase through  Proquest Dissertations/University Microfilms.