Get Help

InterLibrary Loan Policy

The InterLibrary Loan Department provides eligible users access to materials unavailable in the PennWest Clarion University Libraries' collections.

Contact Information:

Carlson Library
Ginger McGiffin +1 814 393 2481

Suhr Library
Mark Conrad +1 814 393 1373

Who may use Interlibrary Loan?

  • PennWest Clarion University students
  • PennWest Clarion University staff
  • PennWest Clarion University faculty
  • PennWest Clarion University administrators
  • Retired Clarion University faculty
  • Others...Please see: InterLibrary Loan (ILL) Community User Policy

Is there a charge for the service?

Usually, no. However, high copyright fees or charges from lending libraries that exceed library budget limits may result in the patron being contacted to determine if he or she will cover the costs or cancel the request.

What types of materials are available via interlibrary loan?

Books and journal articles are the most frequently requested items and, in most cases, can be located and are available for loan from other libraries.


*The Pennsylvania InterLibrary Loan Code guidelines limit types of materials that libraries may request on behalf of their patrons. The following types of materials are generally not lent by other libraries:

  • Bestsellers
  • Just published titles
  • Multiple copies of the same title
  • Course textbooks or other course materials
  • More than five articles from five different journal issues published within the past five years
  • More than two articles from the same issue of the same journal title

* Lending policies of other libraries also may severely limit availability of some types of resources. The InterLibrary Loan department will attempt to secure these types of materials, but may have limited success with:

  • Dissertations and master's theses
  • Videos and Films
  • Archival materials, Manuscripts, or early imprints (titles published prior to 1900)

What is the best way to request materials via the InterLibrary Loan service?

There are two types of InterLibrary Loan services. Users are encouraged to try EZBorrow first, however, this system is currently offline. The small group of cooperating libraries can normally process requests more quickly. If the needed book is not available via EZBorrow or other materials, such as, journal articles or dissertations are needed, use the ILLiad service.

What is EZBorrow?                

  • Used only for book requests only.
  • Encompasses more than 70 academic libraries in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and New Jersey.  
  • Users search, and make requests, themselves.
  • When the item arrives, user is notified via e-mail.
  • Item is placed on hold at the Circulation Desk for pickup or sent to online only students.
  • Response time is generally one week.

What is ILLiad?

  • Users make requests for articles, chapters, books, media, dissertations, and more.
  • InterLibrary Loan staff reviews the request and orders the material from appropriate libraries from across Pennsylvania and the United States.
  • When the item arrives, user is notified via e-mail.
  • Response time  depends on locale of lender and popularity and/or rarity of the item.
  • Generally filled within 2-5 days; however, rare items can take up to two weeks or more.
  • On-campus students pick up their materials at Circulation Desk of their respective campus.
  • Online students receive their materials via UPS.
  • Articles are delivered electronically in PDF format to the user's ILLiad account.
  • User logs into ILLiad from the Library's Homepage to view, print, or save the article.
  • After 90 days, the PDF is deleted from ILLiad, thus ending user access.
  • Online patrons may order materials from PennWest University Libraries' collections.
    • When electronically scanned to ILLiad account, response time is 24-48 hours.
    • UPS delivery adds 3-5 days to delivery time.
  • Provides ordering, and delivery between PennWest's campuses.
    • Community users (who are not members of the "Friends of the Library") need to consult InterLibrary Loan staff for this service.
    • Response time is generally 3 days.

What is the loan period for InterLibrary Loan materials?

Loan periods vary. Typically, items are available for 28 days after arrival (provided that the item is picked up promptly). Subject to change on item-by-item basis as a result of the lender's policy.

Is there a limit on the number of requests that may be submitted?

  • No. However, ILL Department workload may make timely response difficult.
  • Community users registered for InterLibrary Loan Services are limited to ten requests per month.
  • Please submit requests well in advance of project due dates.
  • Note requests that are of greatest priority to your project.

Where should I return materials?

  • Articles do not need to be returned.
  • Other items should be returned to the Libraries' Circulation Desk (Carlson or Suhr Library) on, or before, the due date provided.
  • Online students may return materials via: 
    • UPS using the prepaid return UPS address label.  There is no extra cost for using UPS, but you (the borrower) are responsible for finding a UPS drop off location.
    • Use the provided US Postal service return label.  This address label is not prepaid and the cost of the return is on you (the borrower).
  • Please mail well before the due date, so the item reaches the respective library on time.

What costs are incurred for overdue or lost materials?


  • At 30 days late: $24.50 overdue fee is applied
  • At 60 days late: Item is considered "lost" and bill is issued for replacement cost and overdue fees.
  • Patrons will receive overdue notices.
  • After the third notice, the patron is blocked from further ILL requests until..
  • Fine is paid in full and the item has been returned, or
  • Replacement costs and/or overdue fees are paid (if items are lost or damaged).

Lost Item Processing Fees and Replacement Cost:

  • At 60 days overdue item is declared "lost."
  • $24.50 in overdue fees is assessed, plus...
    • Replacement cost determined by lending library.

What are the user's responsibilities?

  • Honor due dates and return materials on time to avoid fines.
    • Materials need to be returned by, or before, the due date given.
  • Request a renewal (if needed) well in advance of the due date.
    • Both EZBorrow and ILLiad systems provide links for users to request renewals.
      • If materials have been requested by others, or if the end of a term is approaching, a renewal may not be approved.
      • If a title cannot be renewed, users are responsible for returning materials by the due date to avoid fines.
  • Return materials as requested, if recalled by the library.
  • Pay costs and processing fees for lost materials.

InterLibrary Loan privileges are 
suspended until the end of the semester
when a patron abuses the system and
if more than one book is billed for replacement.

The PennWest University of Pennsylvania Libraries reserves the right to refuse service
to any patron who does not follow
InterLibrary Loan policy.

Last Updated 2/3/23