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Friday, September 25, 2009

Can't find a book? Try ILL!

By Heather Waltman, Interlibrary Loan & Reference Librarian

You may not be aware that the library provides interlibrary loan services to all South Texas College of Law faculty, staff, and currently enrolled students. If you need a book or article that we don't own, we are usually able to locate it in another library and borrow it for you (if a book) or send it to you electronically (if an article). And it's easy! Just go to the Library tab in Stanley, scroll down to the Interlibrary Loan channel on the left, and click on the link to ILLiad, our automated ILL request system. You will need to create an account with a unique username and password, and then you can start submitting requests. The system is very user friendly and convenient, and you can track the progress of your request throughout the whole process. For more information, take a look at the ILLiad FAQ page or email the Interlibrary Loan Librarian at stclill@stcl.edu.

You can also view a very short tutorial here.

Even if you're already an ILLiad user, you may not know about one of its features that makes submitting requests even easier. After locating an item in OCLC FirstSearch (WorldCat or ArticleFirst), view the full record display. Under the section labeled "Get This Item," you will see a link that says "Send Request to ILLiad." When you click on this link, the ILLiad Logon page will open in a new window. Logon as you normally would, and the form (for Book or Photocopy, depending on your request type) should open, and all fields will be populated with the bibliographic information from OCLC. Click the submit button. It's that easy, and it saves you the trouble of keying in all that info yourself! If you've already used this feature, you'll know how convenient it is. If you've experienced problems submitting requests through OCLC from off campus, you will no longer have any difficulty. Any snags in off-campus accessibility to ILLiad via OCLC have been repaired.