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Distance Learning: Using Interlibrary Loan

This guide offers an introduction to library services; tools and tips for research, writing, and citation; and key resources for distance education students.

WorldCat

Use WorldCat to search for items from libraries around the world. You can use Interlibrary Loan (ILL) to request items not available in the UA Libraries.

Scout Search

Use Scout to search for books, journals, articles, and more.

Quick Links: ILL

Interlibrary loan, or "ILL," is a service that enables you to access books and articles not held in UA libraries. Distance Ed students and approved commuter students can also use ILL to request that books held by UA Libraries be sent to them by mail.

If you need help with an ILL request, please contact the Interlibrary Loan Department; you can reach them at 205-348-4018 or illstaff@bama.ua.edu.

Borrowing Rules

What kind of materials can be requested?

Books, dissertations and theses, monographs, newspapers, materials reproduced on microfilm, and older volumes of periodicals can usually be borrowed. Photocopies of journal articles or of short sections of books can generally be obtained. For questions about other types of items, check the policies or contact the Interlibrary Loan Department.

How long can I keep the books I borrow?

Books from UA's collection have the same loan period that on-campus users receive. The length of the loan depends on your status (undergraduate, graduate) and the type of material being loaned. Non-circulating materials, such as reference books, cannot be borrowed by distance learning students.

Books from other institutions will generally have a loan period between 2-4 weeks. Interlibrary loan materials are subject to recall by the lending library at any time. In the event this should happen, please return recalled items immediately.

Can I renew my books?

You can renew books from UA's collection by using the Libraries' Catalog or contacting the Circulation Department.

To renew books from other institutions, you must request a renewal through the Interlibrary Loan Office at least one week before the due date by telephone, e-mail, or in person. If a renewal is possible, you will be contacted by phone or e-mail and informed of the new due date. If the ILL band is marked "Not Renewable," the lending library has already indicated a renewal is not possible.

Shipping Addresses

The Interlibrary Loan staff mails books to distance education students and approved commuter students.

Borrowers are responsible for returning the books when they are due, for proper packing, return postage, and any fines assessed for late fees or damaged materials.

If you're returning your books to the library, please use one of the following two addresses:

U.S. Postal Service (mail) 
University Libraries 
The University of Alabama 
Attn: Circulation Department
Box 870266 
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0266

UPS or Overnight Carrier
University Libraries 

The University of Alabama 
Attn: Circulation Department
711 Capstone Drive 
Tuscaloosa, AL 35487-0266


If you need help with an ILL request, please contact the Interlibrary Loan Department; you can reach them at 205-348-4018 or illstaff@bama.ua.edu.