A Library Guide: Interlibrary Loan vs. Borrow Direct

| August 10, 2011

What happens after you’ve searched both Educat (TC’s library catalog) and Clio (Columbia’s library catalog) for an item and still can’t find it? No worries.  As a student or faculty, you can borrow books from other non-Columbia libraries by using Interlibrary Loan or Borrow Direct.  Before choosing which to use, it’s important to know the differences.

Interlibrary Loan FAQ:

Where do I go to make a request? Click here

What can I borrow? Click here

How long will the item take to get here? Anywhere from a few days to 4 weeks. You’ll receive an email once the item is ready to be picked up or if it’s been delivered in electronic format.

How long can I keep the item? Usually four weeks

Can I renew the item? Renewals will depend on the lending library

Who do I contact to renew the item? You can make a request online

How will my item be delivered? Your request may be delivered in electronic format, viewable with Adobe Acrobat Reader, or your material may be picked-up at the Services Desk on the first floor of the Gottesman Libraries. To view items delivered in electronic format, you must login to the Reserves System.

Borrow Direct FAQ:

Where do I go to make a request? Click here

What can I borrow? Books and music scores

How long will the item take to get here? 3-4 business days

How long can I keep the item? 6 weeks

Can I renew the item? Yes.  You can renew the item for another 6 weeks.

Who do I contact to renew the item? Log in to your CLIO My Library Account and check your Charged Items list. Your Borrow Direct books appear in all capital letters and have an Item Type of “bdir.”

Which universities am I borrowing the book from? Brown University, Cornell University, Dartmouth College, the University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, and Yale University.