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Interlibrary Loan: Getting Articles/Books We Don't Have

A step-by-step guide to placing a request to get a copy of an article or book that the BSU libraries don't have access to.


Interlibrary Loan is a service the library provides where we obtain titles we don't own (or don't have access to) from other libraries that do own them (or have access to them).

Sometimes you may figure out that we don't have a title you need and you want to go directly to the Interlibrary Loan site to fill out a request form.  That's straight-forward enough.  Just go here and log in: Interlibrary Loan /ILLiad Log in.

But most often, you'll discover that you need Interlibrary Loan's services while using a database (whether it's via OneSearch or via Find It @ BALL STATE through PsycINFO or ERIC, etc), when you realize you're not able to get to the full-text of some item online.

Just follow the steps below, and you'll be all set!

Getting to Interlibrary Loan through OneSearch

OneSearch results include info on each item's availability in full text.  If you see "Full Text Online," just click there and you can read the article.

A OneSearch record with arrows pointing to the "PDF via Unpaywall" and "Full Text Online links" and this text: "Either link will take you to the full article."

However, the note "Citation Online" indicates you'll need to request the title through Interlibrary Loan.  Click on that link to proceed.

A OneSearch record, with an arrow pointing to "Citation Online," and this text: "Click here to get options for requesting the article."

On the resulting page, click on the "Full Text Options, including Interlibrary Loan" button.

ILL page, with arrow pointing to link in the upper-right that says "Full Text Options, including Interlibrary Loan."

Then look for the link at the bottom of the resulting page.

OneSearch record, pointing to the link below that says "Request the item with Interlibrary Loan / ILLiad"

Just click the link at the bottom to log in and place your request.  (More details about that process below.)

Getting to Interlibrary Loan using Find It @ Ball State via an article database

You may also be led to place an Interlibrary Loan request when you click on the blue "Find It @ BALL STATE" button within a specialized article database. 

Record in APA PsycInfo, with an arrowing pointing to the Find It button toward the bottom

If Find It @ BALL STATE can't find the full-text of the article for you, it leads you to a page like this one:

OneSearch record for an article.  Includes arrow pointing to the link toward the bottom that says "Request the item with Interlibrary Loan / ILLiad"

Just click the link at the bottom to log in and place your request.  (More details about that process below.)

Logging in and Placing an Interlibrary Loan Request

Once you've clicked on the "Request the item with Interlibrary Loan / ILLiad" link, you'll be prompted to log in with your Ball State username and password.

Log in page for Ball State University, saying "Sign In"

Now you're in the Interlibrary Loan system, called ILLiad, and most of your request should already be filled out for you with information from the database you were using.  You just need to choose the date you'd prefer to have the item by in the "Preferred by date" field.  (Bear in mind, as you choose your date, that fulfilling your request usually takes a few days at least.)

Interlibrary Loan Journal Article Request form.  Arrow points to "Preferred By Date".  Another arrow points to "Submit Request" button at the bottom.

Then click "Submit Request," and you'll get an email when our Interlibrary Loan staff have gotten the article for you with instructions on how to access it.

And that's all it takes!  If you have questions about the process, you may find your answers on the Interlibrary Loan FAQ page.