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Interlibrary Loan (ILL)

A step-by-step guide to using interlibrary loan at Kirkwood.

Frequently Asked Questions About Interlibrary Loan (ILL)

Q: What is interlibrary loan?

A: Interlibrary loan (ILL) is a library service that allows Kirkwood students, faculty and staff to borrow materials from other libraries around the country. Articles are delivered electronically to your email, and books are delivered to the library for you to check out. If you are not a current student or employee, ask your local public library about their ILL service.

Q: How much does interlibrary loan cost?

A: Interlibrary loan is provided free of charge.

Q: When should I use interlibrary loan?

A: Use interlibrary loan when you want an article or book not held by Kirkwood Community College Libraries.

Q: What types of materials are available through interlibrary loan?

A: Generally, any items not held by Kirkwood Community College may be requested, but items are usually books and articles.

The following types of materials may not be requested through ILL:

  1. Textbooks and other required course materials or exam study guides may not be requested. 
  2. E-books may not be borrowed.
  3. Most reference materials, such as encyclopedias and dictionaries may not be borrowed.
  4. DVDs or CDs may be requested, however these often can't be borrowed through ILL.
  5. New books, published less than a year ago, usually can't be borrowed. Contact a reference librarian to request that we purchase new titles. 
Q: How long will it take to receive my ILL request?
  • Article requests usually arrive to your email within 3 days, but may take as long as 2 weeks for rare sources.
  • Books and other physical items arrive in 5 to 10 days on average, but may take up to 3 weeks, depending on item availability and distance from the lending library. 
Q: Is there a "rush" service?
  • Unfortunately there is no rush service. If you need materials quickly, contact a reference librarian for help in finding similar resources available from Kirkwood Library Services.
Q: How many ILL requests can I make? Is there a limit?
  • You can have up to 12 physical ILL items out at any one time. This number includes ILL items checked out and requested. 
  • You may make more requests, but they won't be processed until you return ILL items that are checked out.
  • There is no limit to the number of articles that you may request. However, the library may only process 5 requests per day, per user. 

Contact ILL Staff

Hours: Monday - Friday 9am - 4pm*

Phone: 319-398-5696

*Note: Interlibrary Loan materials can be picked up or returned anytime during normal library hours.

Cedar Rapids Campus Library

Benton Hall

6301 Kirkwood Blvd SW, Cedar Rapids, IA


If you need disability-related accommodations in order to use the Library, our website, or our resources, please contact the library at or 319-398-5697.