Interlibrary Loan

printer-friendlyprinter-friendlye-mail this pagee-mail this page

See information below regarding Lewis Library Interlibrary Loan Services. To start using services, see the User Registration for Document Delivery & Interlibrary Loan page to create an account.


Who may use Interlibrary Loan Services?

Interlibrary loan service is available to faculty, students, and staff of the Health Science Center, as well as to Lewis Library card holders and clients of Biomedical Information Services. 

Requests placed for physical, circulating items currently available at the Lewis Library will not be filled by Interlibrary Loan. Check the Library Catalog for availability.  If an item is currently checked out or missing, please note this on your request. Contact the Service Desk at (817) 735-2465 for assistance.

For owned items that are checked out, UNTHSC patrons who place a hold request for the library’s copy may get faster results than by using Interlibrary Loan. Contact the Service Desk for assistance with hold requests, or log into your Borrowing Account to place a hold on an item.

Who should register for a Document Delivery/Interlibrary Loan account?

Everyone using the service needs an account. Your account allows you to receive articles online and track your request history, and it provides us with your contact information for billing. Your account information is confidential and we will never share it with a third party.

How to submit an Interlibrary Loan request

  • Once you have an account in the request system, you can initiate requests from many of our research databases. Click the button labeled, “UNTHSC - Find Full Text.” If full text is not available, then click the link that reads, “Request a copy from Document Delivery/Interlibrary Loan.” This will send the citation to the appropriate request form once you log in.
  • Once your Lewis Library request account has been created, you can sign up for PubMed's Loansome Doc service. Loansome Doc is especially helpful if you are a PubMed user who is not affiliated with the Health Science Center.

  • Come by the Lewis Library Service Desk. 
  • Send a fax to 817-735-0281. Please do not use a highlighter pen to mark citations or the fax copy will be illegible.

If you are requesting rush processing, please note this on request forms and follow up with a phone call or a fax.

Materials usually not available through Interlibrary Loan

  • Audiovisual materials
  • Textbooks
  • Recently published or high-use materials 
  • Non-circulating materials such as reference books, bound periodicals, and complete issues of periodicals
  • Rare or archival items, such as manuscripts
  • Dissertations and theses. Even if the owning library will not lend them, however, they can usually provide a copy of a chapter, the table of contents, and/or the bibliography. Complete copies of dissertations and theses can be ordered online from Dissertation Express.

Turnaround time

Turnaround times are highly variable and depend on availability of the requested item, the location of the supplying library, and the speed with which that library processes the request.  Here is typically what you can expect:

  • Articles and chapters that can be delivered electronically are usually available within 1-4 days. 
  • Books and other physical items are usually shipped "Library Rate," which can take up to two weeks to arrive.

Please note:  Many academic libraries suspend interlibrary loan services during their holiday break. Therefore, processing of any requests submitted in December may be delayed. If there is an urgent need for a document, such as a clinical emergency, the Interlibrary Loan staff can request “rush” service from another library. There is no added service charge for UNTHSC patrons, but ILL service will be suspended if the rush status is abused.  If you are requesting express mail service, you will need to provide an account number or pay the library for the shipping cost.

Receipt and use of borrowed materials

  • Notification
    When requested items arrive, you will be notified by e-mail. If rush processing was requested, you will also be notified by phone.
  • Pick-Up and Return
    All books and media should be picked up at and returned to the Service Desk. Do not use the book drop or campus mail for returns to avoid late fees and possible damage charges. Patrons living outside the local area may ship items for return. Please return materials to the Lewis Library Interlibrary Loan office and not the owning library. Due dates still apply to shipped items.
  • Due Dates
    Due dates are set by the lending library and are not controlled by the Lewis Library.
  • Renewals
    Interlibrary Loan items cannot be renewed online. Renewals should be requested through the ILL office. Please call at least three days before the due date to request a renewal. Only one renewal per item is allowed.
  • Fines
    Overdue fines are charged at the rate of $1.00 per day. Any loss or damages are the responsibility of the requestor. Please respect materials loaned from other libraries and return them with the paper band intact to ensure that the materials are properly checked in. 
  • Electronic Requests
    Articles are posted online in Adobe Acrobat (pdf) format, and a notification e-mail message is sent to the address submitted on the request form.


  • UNTHSC Departmental Accounts
    Interdepartmental charges from the previous month are entered into EIS during the first week of the current month.
  • All other accounts
    Bills are issued monthly for interlibrary loan services. Payments may be made in person or by mail, or by phone with a Visa, MasterCard, or Discover credit card. Always provide your invoice or invoice number so your account can be properly credited.

Copyright limits

Copyright guidelines for interlibrary loan limit libraries to five copies “borrowed” per calendar year from any single periodical title. Beyond that, publisher permission is required. However, this applies only to articles published in the past five years. Under Fair Use guidelines a library may copy only one article per issue in response to a request.  If your request would cause these limits to be exceeded, the library staff will notify you of the item’s availability status and the amount of any royalty fee that will be required to obtain it.

Copyright notice

The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code), governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material. Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction. One of these specified conditions is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be "used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship, or research." If a user makes a request for, or later uses, a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of "fair use," that user may be liable for copyright infringement. This institution reserves the right to refuse to accept a copying order, if, in its judgment, fulfillment of the order would involve violation of copyright law.

Alternatives to Interlibrary Loan

  • TexShare
    See TexShare Card for more information.
  • Document Delivery Services
    If time does not permit you to use Interlibrary Loan services, you may want to consider a commercial document delivery service. These businesses have the capability to fill orders for articles quickly and to deliver either electronically or through an express mail service. Copyright royalty fees are typically included in the charges, and advance payment by credit card is usually required. The Document Delivery Suppliers site is a useful source for finding a provider that can meet your needs.


Page last updated on May 01, 2014