Schaffner Interlibrary Loan

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Please use NU Library's Interlibrary Loan (ILL) system to request non-NU owned materials and for all article and book chapter delivery requests (both NU and non-NU owned).

To learn how to use Interlibrary Loan, please view this quick video tutorial:
ILL video tutorialI need it, but you don't have it! AKA Interlibrary Loan

This ILL system requires first-time users to CREATE AN ACCOUNT.

You will be directed to log in with your NetID through NU Passport. Or if you have already created an account, log on to your ILL account.

Patrons may place ILL requests, check the status of requests, view electronic articles when they arrive, or renew ILL materials all within this single system. Pritzker and Galter patrons will be able to use this system in the future.

ILL services are provided at no fee to the user for current students, staff, faculty (current and emeriti), domestic partners of faculty and staff, and visiting scholars with valid Northwestern University WildCARDs and NetIDs. Alumni and guest borrowers may only place intercampus loan requests for items available at the Evanston campus libraries. Students not currently registered may not place ILL requests.

University Library Interlibrary Loan User and Staff Rights and Responsibilities


  • Interlibrary Loan (ILL) at the Schaffner Library will order materials which are not owned by Northwestern University Library (NUL) or are declared missing or lost.
  • Delivery time for books and other items such as microfilm and videos averages 2 to 3 weeks, plus an extra day to route to Schaffner. We will notify patrons via e-mail when ILL items are ready for pick-up at Schaffner.
  • Patrons may request articles from the NU Evanston campus libraries via ILL for electronic delivery.

Tips for ILL:

  • Before submitting a request, check NUsearch to see if the item is available in a Northwestern Library.
  • Two places to search for items to request via ILL are WorldCat (for books, dissertations, etc.) and ArticleFirst (for articles). 
  • Your ILL account is accessible through WorldCat and other library Electronic Resources. When you find something you would like, the option to get it through Interlibrary Loan will appear. When you choose that option, you will be prompted to log on to your ILL account.

ILL Loan Period and Renewals

  • Loan periods are determined by the lending library and are usually 2 to 4 weeks.
  • Restrictions such as "no renewal" or "library use only" will be strictly observed.
  • All borrowed materials can be returned to the Schaffner Library Circulation Desk or to the Main Library's ILL desk.

Warning Concerning Copyright Restrictions

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.