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Collection Services, UCD Library: Inter-Library Loans

This guide provides information on the Collection Services Unit and the services it offers to academics, researchers, and undergraduates.

Inter-Library Loans

All applications are accepted through our online form.  Please include as much detailed information (Author, Title, ISBN, Publisher, date) as possible. 
Request an Inter-Library Loan (ILL)

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Inter-Library Loans FAQ

Yes, where an item is unavailable either in print or electronically in our Library, we can often acquire a copy of it from another Library using our Inter-Library Loan service.

Material is sourced from a range of Irish, UK and international libraries. If we find the material is freely available online, we will direct you to the source and your ILL request will be cancelled.

Alternatively, if you are UCD academic staff, or a postgraduate research student, you are eligible to visit and/or borrow from other university libraries by availing of our ALCID and SCONUL Access co-operative access schemes.

ALCID cards are also available to students who are studying on taught masters programmes.

We can look for an Inter-Library Loan for:

  • books published after 1900
  • journal articles
  • conference papers
  • music scores
  • Irish theses.

Over 90% of requests are obtained successfully. In a limited number of cases the library we contact may not be willing to loan an item – it may be too fragile, be in demand etc.

Unfortunately, we cannot obtain the following items on Inter-Library Loan:

  • manuscripts
  • unpublished material
  • theses from abroad
  • audio material
  • video cassettes
  • DVDs.
  1. Check UCD Library catalogue and e-resources for availability.
  2. Complete the online Inter-Library Loan application form. External borrowers click on the "External Borrowers" button to login.
  3. Please fill in all sections of the form.
  4. Tell us where you found your reference if possible. This may assist us in locating obscure items.

This service has no charge for UCD staff and students.

Listed below are the approximate times it takes to receive requested items. It sometimes takes a little longer. We will contact you by e-mail if there is a long delay.

  • Books: 10 days
  • Theses: 10 days
  • Journal articles - print format: 7 days

Books, theses and journal articles in print format - we alert you by e-mail when your item arrives.

Where a School address has been provided - journal articles in print format are posted to you via internal post.

Over 90% of requests are obtained successfully. In a limited number of cases a request will be cancelled if:

  • We are unable to find a library that will lend the item to us.
  • We need more information to locate the item and we need to contact you. If we haven't heard back from you after 4 weeks, we then cancel the request.
  • If we find the material is freely available online.

 We will email you if we have to cancel your request.

Journal articles – all formats: You may keep all journal articles, they do not need to be returned.

  • Average loan period: 3 weeks.
  • The library that provides the item decides how long it can be borrowed for and whether it can be renewed.
  • Some items cannot be taken out of our Library.

Ask at the Information Desk, Level 1, James Joyce Library or the Loan/Information Desk in other library locations for more information.

The British Library charges €200.00 if you lose a book. Please talk to us at the Information Desk, Level 1, James Joyce Library or at the Service Desk in other library locations as soon as possible. Please do not contact the British Library directly.

If your Hospital has its own library then talk to staff there first. They will help you with sourcing Inter-Library Loans.

Where your Teaching Hospital or Clinical Unit does not have a Library, the UCD Health Sciences Library will provide this service.


  • Go to
  • On the External Borrower Login input your name and then your Library Barcode
  • This will open the Inter-Library Loan Requests - Journal article form. Other request forms are available in the right-hand menu.
  • Please complete this form with as much detail as possible.
  • Requests should be submitted by email to
  • Libraries based in Ireland and U.K. should quote BLDSC Customer Code and a Request number.
  • Charges are in line with BLDSC prices.
  • All other libraries should e-mail requests, and IFLA vouchers are accepted as payment.