Interlibrary Loan: Current Emergency Policies & Services

How to get library materials from other libraries for free

A skeleton crew of Interlibrary Loan & Document Delivery staff are working hard to continue to provide you with journal articles and book chapters. While the Library is closed, we are unable to scan from our physical collection. Currently, libraries around the world are closed, so scanning from physical copies is limited to those few libraries that are still open. Many publishers have made some or all of their journal articles freely available. Unfortunately, most publishers continue to restrict the sharing of e-books and e-book chapters between libraries. Whenever possible, we will request e-books and e-book chapters, but we are not usually able to provide access because of blocks built into the platforms e-book publishers use.

Items still available through Interlibrary Loan & Document Delivery:

  • Journal Articles Published Online
  • Certain E-Books and E-Book Chapters

Items currently unavailable through Interlibrary Loan & Document Delivery:

  • Physical Materials that have Not Already been Digitized (Books, Microfilm, Scores, DVDs, etc.)
  • Most Journal Articles and Book Chapters that have Only Been Published in Print

New requests for loans will be cancelled. If you've already requested a loan before the Library closed, you might be wondering...

Will I still receive my book/score/microfilm/DVD/etc?

Unless you have received a cancellation email from ILLiad, your request is still active. While we cannot promise that we will be able to provide your requested material in the time frame you need it, we will process all incoming materials from other libraries as soon as the Library reopens.

I have an ILL on hold at the Marriott Library. Can I have it delivered?

Until the Library reopens, we are unable to deliver any materials either through Office or Home Delivery. We apologize for the inconvenience. The safety of our faculty, staff, and students is our first priority during this pandemic.

I already asked to have my loan delivered, why didn't I receive it?

Even before the Library closed, it was operating under a skeleton crew. The entire department that provides Office Delivery was not allowed into the building the last week the Library was open. There was a delay in processing items we received from other libraries and patron requests for deliveries while our department was only staffed by two employees. We apologize for the inconvenience. We are doing our best under the circumstances.

Can someone scan the book that I have on hold?

No Library employees are currently in the building to provide this service. We apologize for the inconvenience. Whenever possible, we will try to provide e-books. Unfortunately they are not always available.

Can I return my ILL in a drop box?

Please do not attempt to return your interlibrary loans until the Library re-opens. No Interlibrary Loan staff is present to check in the item. Due dates have been extended to June 1st so that no fines will be added for overdue ILL materials.

I have an overdue ILL. What should I do?

Keep all of your interlibrary loans until the Library re-opens. If you have already been fined for a currently checked out item, that fine will be waived in light of this crisis. Due dates have been extended to June 1st so that no fines will be added for overdue ILL materials. No Interlibrary Loan staff is present to check in the item.

Can I mail back my ILL?

Please do not mail back your interlibrary loan materials. No Interlibrary Loan staff is present to check in the item or return it to the lending library. Please do not attempt to mail interlibrary loans to the lending library. Most libraries in the United States (as well as many around the world) are closed and do not currently want their materials returned.

I can't return my ILL on or after May 8th. What should I do?

If you will not be able to return your interlibrary loan when the Library re-opens, email We will make arrangements for the Library to pay for the item to be mailed back to us. Please do not mail back items without contacting us first. We want to make sure that the package is delivered when someone is available to receive it.


How can I contact your department while the Marriott Library is closed?

Please email Our contact hours remain Monday-Friday 8 AM-5 PM. We will reply as quickly as possible.

Is there a number I can call?

There is not anyone to answer our department phone while the Library is closed. Please use our email address for the time being.


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Online Resources

Allyson Mower, Associate Librarian and Head of Scholarly Communication and Copyright, has created an entire guide to online resources available during the COVID-19 crisis. has launched a National Emergency Library full of free digitized books, journals, and other media. The website was already a wonderful resource for online research, but in response to the closure of so many libraries, they have temporarily removed any waiting period to virtually borrow materials. Essentially, houses two types of e-books. Ones that can be read entirely online and downloaded in whole or in part (these are out of copyright) and ones that have to "borrowed" or read online for two weeks at a time. Anyone can view and use the first type, but you need to create a free account to borrow books that are still protected by copyright. is temporarily expanding the number of digitized books and journals that the University of Utah can access. These items will not appear in USearch, the University of Utah online catalog. To view what is available, you will need to log in to HathiTrust by clicking on the yellow Log In button in the upper right corner of the window, choosing University of Utah as your partner institution and then log in using your University of Utah ID and password. The HathiTrust display will remove the yellow Log In button and inform the user  they are successfully logged in. Books available under this emergency service will show in the search display with the text “Temporary Access”. “Temporary Access” books will only be available as long as the University libraries remain closed. “Temporary Access” books can only be read online. Users will only be able to download one page at a time: they will not be able to download the whole book. This service is not available to alumni, community patrons, or other individuals who have guest affiliations. ILL is not possible. Users can “check out” a book for 1 hour. Their access will continue to renew automatically at the end of that hour, unless another user is trying to use the same book. Users will also have access to books that are marked “Full View”. Books marked “Limited (search-only)” are not available.

ANSI has made some standards available free in response to COVID-19, including 31 ISO standards.  Most of the standards are related to technology related to fighting the pandemic. To access the free portal, individual users must accept the license agreement and register. Once registered, users can return to the portal via . First time visitors should go to to register.

There are two e-book sites for textbooks that are offering free e-books until May 25th to assist students with their studies: VitalSource Helps and RedShelf Responds. Not every book available through VitalSource can be freely borrowed.  Just selected publishers are working with VitalSource.  The list of publishers includes many of the major publishers. The list of publishers  available through this VitalSource COVID-19 program is available here: To access the free e-books, download and install the BookShelf App. BookShelf is an app that is available for iOS, PC/Windows, Android, and other platforms. The BookShelf app is available here . Create an account with your University of Utah email address (ending in  If you already have an account, you will have to tie it to the “VitalSource Helps” service. More information is available here RedShelf is the browser-based platform. No app is needed, but students and teaching faculty have to establish their own “VitalSource Helps” accounts and login with these accounts each time they wish to borrow a book.  They may borrow up to 7 books.


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