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Requesting Library Items: Interlibrary Loan: How many books and articles can I request through Interlibrary Loan?

How many books and articles can I request through Interlibrary Loan?

Books:  There is no limit on what you can request through I-Share (double-check that), nor is there a limit on how many books you can request through the national consortium. 

Journal articles: There is no limit on how many articles you can request through Interlibrary Loan.  However, there is a limit on how many recent articles you can request from a single journal.  Under U.S. copyright law,

A borrowing library may receive copies of up to five articles from a single periodical title each year without paying any copyright fees. For each copy beyond that, a license fee (or a subscription) is required. This rule applies only to articles published within five years prior to the date of the ILL request.  (“Modern Interlibrary Loan Practices: Moving beyond the CONTU Guidelines,” ARL White Paper, August 31, 2020)   

This is known as “the rule of 5.”  Once a library has exceeded this limit of 5 articles, the patron must pay for the article.  (Right now, we do not offer the service of purchasing the article for the patron; they can order it from the journal’s website.  Patrons may also petition the university to subscribe, or travel to a library that subscribes to a paper version of the journal and consult it.)