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Borrowing Outside AU

Consortium Loan Service (CLS)

Eligible AU and Washington Research Library Consortium (WRLC) students, staff and faculty have privileges to borrow from the WRLC Storage Center as well as all of the main libraries participating in the WRLC. These include: 

American University student, staff, and faculty can borrow directly from any WRLC university as well as use their online resources onsite.   

Filling out a CLS request

  • Search the catalog by the book/journal title or author.
  • If the book is owned by a WRLC school, it can be ordered through Consortium Loan Service (CLS) by clicking on the red "REQUEST" link.
  • To check item availability at George Mason or Georgetown, select the "holdings" link in the individual catalog records for that item. If the item is available, hit the back arrow to place the CLS request.

CLS book loan periods

Undergrad and staff - 4 weeks
Grad - 6 weeks
Faculty - Fixed Dates: Jan 31, May 31, or Sept 30

Books requested through CLS usually take 2-3 days to arrive at the library. They are held at the Borrowing Desk for 10 days from the day you receive the email that they have arrived.

Book Chapter Requests

AU users may also request that scans of individual chapters be made and sent to their My Library Account as a web doc. Copyright restrictions do apply and scan requests for more than 10% of an item will not be fulfilled. 

When a request exceeds the 10% allowable under copyright law, or when the lending institution does not have staff to scan the item, the physical item will be sent in its place. This service is available for all regularly circulating items and does not apply to items temporarily placed on course reserve.

Journal Volume Requests

Journal volumes held at the WRLC storage center may be requested by clicking on the red "REQUEST" link. Once the journal arrives it will be held at the borrowing desk for 10 days. All journal volumes are IN LIBRARY USE only.

Video CLS

All DVDs and other media located in the WRLC libraries are listed in the online catalog like books. Depending on home library policies, these may be available to AU faculty, staff and students through a regular CLS request. Video CLS items are loaned for five days and overdue fines are $5 per day. Consortium users are welcome to view any title on-site at Media Services.

Please note: AU users cannot CLS AU videos.
If the title is available, you are more than welcome to come to the library and check it out in person.


Interlibrary Loan (ILL) 

AU faculty, staff, and students are welcome to use ILL to request items that they cannot obtain through CLS. ILL essentially tries to fulfill patron requests by getting items from all over the country, and even internationally.

Placing an ILL Request

Before you place an Interlibrary Loan request please remember to search our catalog and check if the item is available at AU or another WRLC library.

If the item is not available through CLS, you can search WorldCat for the title and then select the link that says "Request this item through ILL." This will prompt you to log in to your My Library Account and will take you to a pre-populated request form.

If you are not requesting the material through WorldCat, please log into your My Library Account, click on the "Requests" tab, and select the ILLiad Log in link on the right hand side of the page. When filling out the ILL form manually, try to include as much information as possible. Often this helps our ILL department get the item to you faster.

Eligible Items

  • Books
  • Book Chapters (10%)
  • Microfiche
  • Reports/Conference Proceedings
  • Articles
  • Media (film, music, audio)
  • Microfilm
  • Theses/Dissertations

ILL Loan Period

Loan periods for ILL materials are up to the discretion of the lender. Renewals and terms of the lending are also decided by the lending institution. 

To check for due dates please look at the purple label affixed to the material or login to your My Library Account. ILL books are held until the due date given by the lender.

ILL items usually take 7-10 business days to arrive at the library. The items will be held until the lending library specified due date at the Borrowing Desk.

Interlibrary Loan Contacts

General ILL Office

Shane Hickey

ILL Coordinator

Andrea Paredes-Herrera

Borrowing Specialist

Alexander Mackintosh

Lending Specialist


ILL Hours:
Mon - Fri : 9am - 5pm

ILL Staff at Borrowing Desk:
Mon - Fri : 12pm - 1pm