Borrowing from other libraries (ILL & Summit)

These services are only available to students, staff, faculty, and research associates affiliated with Western.


Summit allows WWU students, staff, faculty, research associates, and visiting Summit patrons to borrow materials from partner libraries for delivery to Western free of charge.

Search for Summit Materials through OneSearch

What can be borrowed?

  • All printed books and music scores that are lent by the owning library
  • Some media materials (DVDs, videos) or microforms (film, fiche)

What can't be borrowed?

  • Materials held in the Western Libraries that are on the shelf and available for lending.
  • Materials assigned to reference, reserve, or rare book collections in other libraries.

Loan Details:

  • Books and media materials loan for 12 weeks and can be renewed for an additional 6 weeks.
  • Renewal requests may be denied if others are waiting to use those materials.

Who are our Summit partner Libraries?

  • Our partners include academic libraries throughout Washington, Oregon, and Idaho.

Use your library account to renew Summit materials.

Loan periods, fines & Fees

Interlibrary Loan (Illiad)

Interlibrary Loan (ILL) allows WWU students, staff, and faculty to borrow from other libraries free of charge if items are not available at WWU through a system called ILLiad.

  • We will try to borrow almost any item requested.

What can't be borrowed?

  • "Textbooks" cannot be requested.   
  • Some items are difficult to obtain, such as reference materials, standardized tests and testing manuals, books published in the last 6 months or before 1880, unpublished conference papers.

How long does it take to get an item?

  • Articles requested can often be delivered within hours.
  • Other materials usually arrive within two weeks. 
  • You will receive an email when your materials are ready.

Borrowing Libraries Information

Loan periods, fines & Fees

Departmental Delivery / Scanning Services

We deliver materials and provide scanned copies of journal articles and book chapters from the WWU libraries collection. Find out more

Login to Illiad to manage requests

Borrowing from other Libraries FAQ


When possible, use the FindIt button which displays in most of our online databases and resources. If the item you are after is not available locally or electronically, a link to ILLiad will appear as an option in the FindIt window. By submitting your ILLiad requests in this way most of the required bibliographic data is passed into the ILLiad request form.

The current status of any ILLiad request can be viewed by logging in to your ILLiad account.  

ILLiad uses statuses which may be used to pinpoint the status of your request at any given time. These statuses may reflect the actions of the requestor as well as those of the ILL staff.

Status: Explanation:
Awaiting patron contact The requested item has arrived and has been processed by the ILL staff, but we have not yet contacted the patron to inform him/her that the item has arrived.
Awaiting post receipt processing The requested item has arrived, but has not yet been processed by the ILL staff.
Awaiting return processing This item has been returned to the ILL office by the patron. It is currently awaiting return processing so that it can be returned to the lender.
Cancelled by ILL staff                     

This request has been cancelled by the ILL staff. The reason for this cancellation may be found in ILLiad by pushing the "View/Resubmit Cancelled Requests" button and looking at the detailed information for the cancelled item.


Note: If one of your requests is cancelled by the ILL staff, ILLiad immediately sends you an e-mail message explaining why the item was cancelled.

Checked out to patron The requested item has arrived, has been processed by the ILL staff, and has been checked out by the patron, by one of his/her proxies, or by a staff member who is preparing to deliver the item. Until the item's status is changed to "Item Checked In", the patron is responsible for the item.
In communication with possible lender ILL staff is working with a lender on the terms of a loan or to clarify a citation.
Item checked in The item has been returned to the ILL office by the patron and the item has been checked in. It is now ready for return processing.
Purchase request in process Your purchase suggestion is being evaluated for addition to our collection and an appropriate copy is being located.
Received incorrect/partial item An item was received that either does not match the item that was requested or is incomplete. The ILL staff will determine the quickest means to correct this.
Request finished                     

The entire request process has been completed successfully. Requests with this status are archived under the "View Request History" button.


Note: Cancelled requests are not at "Request Finished" status and thus do not display under "View Request History". Cancelled requests may be found under the "View/Resubmit Cancelled Requests" button.

Request in process ILL Staff is verifying your citation and searching for possible lenders.
Request in use by staff This request is currently open and being processed by a staff member.
Request received from lender The requested item has arrived, has been processed by the ILL staff, and the patron has been notified of its availability via E-Mail.
Request submitted to lenders Request has been submitted to potential lenders and we are awaiting reply or shipment.
Submitted by patron This request has been submitted by the patron and is awaiting processing by the ILL staff.

Articles and other electronic files obtained through interlibrary loan are intended for the requester alone and may not be shared with other people. Downloading an ILL article for your own personal/academic use is accepted as fair use, but further distribution may violate copyright law.

If the person you want to share the material with is affiliated with WWU, they can request the same item through their own ILL account (sharing the citation information is fine). These requests will then be evaluated according to our regular copyright clearance procedures.

This policy is also articulated in the copyright notice we include on all our online ILL request forms:

COPYRIGHT RESTRICTIONS: The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs reproductions of copyrighted materials, which allows WWU Libraries to make copies under specific conditions. Copies cannot be "used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship, or research." Users requesting or using materials in excess of "fair use" may be liable for copyright infringement. WWU Libraries reserves the right to refuse a request if it violates of copyright law.

Read more information about Western Libraries’ copyright policies.

See Western Libraries’ Loan Periods, Fines, & Fees page for general information about Summit and Interlibrary Loan fine rates.

  • Lost items are billed for replacement after 60 days overdue or are returned with substantial damage.
  • Summit items have a standard replacement fee of $90.00.
  • Interlibrary loan replacement fees can vary and are determined by the lending library.
  • In some instances, patrons may replace items themselves if they can find a suitable item that is cheaper than the standard replacement cost. The patron should contact the Libraries beforehand to verify that replacement is an option.
  • If a book is paid for or replaced by the patron, and the original book is found later, the original book remains the property of the state and must be returned.