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Interlibrary Loan

Some ILL services will be unavailable during the Fall 2020 semester. If you have questions about ILL or specific requests, please email library@canton.edu.

Interlibrary Loan is a free service available to SUNY Canton students, faculty and staff.

To request library materials through Interlibrary Loan, please log in to the ILLiad online Interlibrary Loan system with your campus account (NetID) username and password. First time users will be asked to register for an account.

Logon to ILLiad

How to Use Interlibrary Loan

Click the images below to access instructional videos on interlibrary services:

Frequently Asked Questions about Interlibrary Loan and ILLiad

What is Interlibrary Loan?

When a member of the SUNY Canton community wishes to borrow library materials not owned by the Southworth Library Learning Commons, they are encouraged to place an "Interlibrary Loan" request. The library's Interlibrary Loan (ILL) department borrows library materials, on the behalf of its patrons, from thousands of other libraries in the continental United States.

What is ILLiad?
What types of “library materials” will ILL borrow?
What types of “library materials” will ILL NOT borrow?
Can I borrow textbooks?
Who can use ILL?
How much does the service cost?
How do I use ILL?
How long does it take?
Why didn’t I get what I requested?
Due Dates?
What happens if I don’t return my loan?
Questions, comments, and renewal requests

What is ILLiad?

ILLiad is the electronic system you use to request an item through Interlibrary Loan. The name ILLiad can be thought of as an acronym for InterLibrary Loan Internet Accessible Database.

With ILLiad:

  1. You enter your name, address, and other personal information into the system only once, at the time of your first request.
  2. Your request will be handled more rapidly and accurately as problems relating to misinterpretation of hand-written requests are eliminated.
  3. You can get many of your photocopies instantly through Electronic Delivery.
  4. You can get information about the status of your request through the Web at any time from any location without having to call the ILL Department.
  5. Requested items can be renewed online.
  6. Library personnel are able to serve you better because all data about your request and its handling is stored in a searchable database. We are able to respond quickly to your inquiries about your request. We are also able to gather statistical information about the performance of the libraries that lend to us, enabling us to make better decisions when choosing a lender to supply an item.

What types of “library materials” will ILL borrow?

ILL will obtain books, audiobooks, videos, and other items typically loaned out by public and academic libraries. Book chapters and articles from journals and magazines are copied and sent directly to the patron.

What types of “library materials” will ILL NOT borrow?


  1. Materials owned by, and available in, Southworth Library Learning Commons
  2. E-books
  3. Whole journal volume/issues
  4. Unpublished material

Can I borrow textbooks?

Yes, but Interlibrary Loan is not an ideal method for obtaining textbooks, and it is NOT recommended.

  • Textbooks are typically needed for the full academic semester, while libraries usually lend ILL books for shorter periods (three weeks or a month). Renewals can be requested, but are not guaranteed.
  • Because so many students do not return textbooks by their “due dates,” many libraries are not willing lend them. This makes it hard for SUNY Canton ILL staff to find a library willing to lend.
  • As a consequence of so few lenders, textbooks generally take longer to obtain than normal loans. Many arrive weeks after the semester has begun, while many other textbook requests are likely to go unfilled.

Who can use ILL?

ILL services are open to all SUNY Canton students, faculty, and staff only. Community borrowers are encouraged to use their public library to request ILL materials.

How much does the service cost?

ILL service is always free of charge.

Although ILL service is free to users, the average cost to the library for each completed interlibrary loan transaction is approximately $30.00. Users are encouraged to use the service judiciously to avoid unnecessary expense for the college, and to inform ILL staff if a previously requested item is no longer needed.

How do I use ILL?

Before placing an ILL request, you should check for the material in Southworth Library’s catalog or with a "RooSearch." You can also look elsewhere online, such as with a “Google Scholar” search. Finally, users are encouraged to seek assistance at one of the library’s Research Help Desk when choosing to use Interlibrary Loan services.

Login to the ILLiad online Interlibrary Loan service. Fill in the form on the "Submit a New Request" menu with as much information as possible

You will receive an email telling you when the requested item has arrived. Loans will be available for pick-up at the Southworth Library Circulation Desk. A valid SUNY Canton ID card is required in order to pick up ILL items.

Book chapters and articles will be available as a .pdf file. You will receive an email with a link to the article.

How long does it take?

Delivery time varies. Requested loans may be here in a few days, but a week to 10 days is typical. Requests for popular and rare items often take much longer. An article/copy request could arrive in as little as an hour or two, but a day or several days is common.

Those who need materials sooner should consider other means. SUNY Canton students, for example, have borrowing privileges at St. Lawrence University, Canton Free Library, Clarkson, SUNY Potsdam, and all other SUNY colleges. It may be faster to go directly to these libraries yourself. Ask at the Research Desk about checking other library catalogs.

Why didn’t I get what I requested?

If the ILL department is unable to borrow an item, the patron is notified by email and the request is "unfilled." This is done after a reasonable attempt has been made to obtain the item. We try to fill all requests, but all loans are dependent on the willingness of other libraries to supply the materials and we cannot guarantee any request will be filled.

Other reasons a request may be go unfilled:

  1. The patron did not provide enough information in the Request form
  2. The material could not be found by the patron’s “Material Not Needed After” date
  3. Certain material types are more difficult to borrow, as libraries are often not willing to lend them; these include best-sellers, recently published books, multivolume sets, microfilm, DVDs, LPs, rare books, textbooks, workbooks, reference books, genealogical materials, and archival materials

See also the list of materials ILL will not attempt to borrow, above.

Due Dates?

Copies of book chapters and articles are scanned for the patron — these copies are theirs to keep.

Due dates for loans are determined by the lending library — SUNY Canton has no control over due dates. Similarly, loans may be recalled by lender at any time, and are due upon receipt of a recall notice.

Some materials — such as microfilm, DVDs, LPs, rare books, and archival materials — may be limited to in-house use only, and cannot be taken out of the Learning Commons building.

Overdue notices are sent if materials are not returned by their due dates.

Users are financially responsible for Interlibrary Loan material from the time it is picked up at the Southworth Library Learning Commons Circulation Desk until the time it is returned to the Circulation Desk. If material is lost or damaged, the user is charged a replacement and processing fee, determined by the lending library.


Renewals can be requested, but are granted at the discretion of the lending library. To request a renewal, login to your ILL account online or contact the Interlibrary Loan office (see below). If the lending library does not grant the renewal, the material must be returned by its original due date; all renewals must be requested before that due date occurs.

What happens if I don’t return my loan?

Users are financially responsible for Interlibrary Loan material from the time it is picked up at the Southworth Library Learning Commons Circulation Desk until the time it is returned to the Circulation Desk. If material is lost or damaged, the user is charged replacement and processing fees determined by the lending library.

An item is declared “lost” if not returned within three weeks after the item’s “due date.” At three weeks overdue, the patron’s access to the ILLiad ILL service is suspended, and a hold is placed on their campus account.

Once the Southworth Library receives an invoice from the lending library (the library that owns the lost material), a patron is sent a fourth and final notice. If the overdue material has still not been returned seven days or more after the final notice, the full replacement charge is placed on the patron’s campus account. Once replacement/processing fees are charged to the patron, they cannot be waived for any reason, including the eventual return of the overdue item.

A suspended patron may request their ILL access be restored after all items are returned and all charges are paid. Requests must be made in writing, emailed to the ILL office at ill@canton.edu or physically mailed to the ILL office at:

Interlibrary Loan
Southworth Library Learning Commons
SUNY Canton
34 Cornell Drive
Canton, NY 13617

ILL borrowing rights will be reinstated upon any written request. However, the Southworth Library Learning Commons reserves the right to offer any reinstated patron limited, “article-only” borrowing privileges. This means the patron will be allowed to submit requests for copies of articles and book chapters (which do not need to be returned), but will not be able to request items that must be returned by a “due date,” such as books and DVDs. A patron may have their borrowing privileges limited if:

They have been excessively late in returning ILL loans over two or more consecutive academic semesters (excessively late is defined as three weeks or more after the item’s ‘due date’);


They have made a statement, in person or in writing, that demonstrates a clear lack of good faith in returning ILL materials by their “due dates,” such as telling a librarian that they have no intention of returning future loans on time.

Patrons with limited borrowing rights may request, in writing, to have their full borrowing privileges reinstated at the beginning of each new academic semester.

Questions, comments, and renewal requests may be directed to the Southworth Library Interlibrary Loan staff:

By email: library@canton.edu 
By phone: (315)386-7228

General information about ILL services and help finding/requesting materials may also be found at the library's Research Help Desk.

Learning Commons Building Hours

Summer 2021 hours
May 15-Aug 13*:
Mon-Fri: 8:00am - 4:00pm
Sat & Sun: closed

*Closed May 31 and July 5

Fall semester hours:
Mon-Thurs: 7:30am - 2:00am
Fri: 7:30am - midnight
Sat: 8:00am - midnight
Sun: 8:00am - 2:00am

Please note: Library, Tutoring, and HelpDesk services are also available remotely