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Geoscience Resources: Interlibrary Loan

ILL Options

Interlibrary Loan Services at IUP

Scientific and other scholarly literature is created and published at a tremendously fast rate, and in thousands of different journals, websites, and books. No modern library can subscribe to or purchase every resource, journal, or monograph that a library user might need - however, libraries across the country work together to make sure that the critical resources they possess can be shared with other libraries when necessary. They do this via interlibrary loan (or ILL) services.

At the IUP Libraries, we offer two primary means to acquire materials by interlibrary loan: PALCI EZ-Borrow, and ILLIAD

IMPORTANT: Before using either ILL service, check the PILOT Catalog to make sure IUP does not already own the item. If the IUP Libraries owns an item that you requested, and it is currently available (i.e., not checked out) your request will be denied.

There is no cost to the library patron to use either PALCI or ILLIAD.


PALCI stands for Pennsylvania Academic Library Consortium, Inc., and is composed of academic libraries across Pennsylvania and a few that lie outside the state. PALCI offers library users a way to search catalogs at other libraries for books that the IUP Libraries do not own. PALCI has the following characteristics:

  • Signing in requires you to use the 16-digit number on your I-Card
  • When you request a book, it is sent from the lending institution to IUP (or to the IUP location you specify); you will be notified by email when the book arrives.
  • Since the book is physically shipped to IUP, allow 3-5 days (sometimes more) for shipping
  • The lending period is determined by the lending institution, and will be clearly marked on the book
  • PALCI is only usable for borrowing books via Interlibrary Loan.


ILLiad is used across the country as an interlibrary loan system for academic libraries. Here at IUP Libraries, we recommend the use of ILLiad to acquire journal articles, dissertations, and books that cannot be found via the PALCI system mentioned above.

Before you can use ILLIAD, you will have to complete a profile setup, so that the ILLIAD system knows where to send materials. This process takes only a few moments, and once you've completed it, you will be taken immediately to the ILLIAD request form. ILLIAD has the following characteristics:

  • You may request books or articles via ILLIAD (however, you must first check PALCI, if what you want is a book)
  • You will need to have the citation information - article title, journal title, authors, year of publication, issue and volume number, and so forth - to place a request for an article
  • Articles are typically emailed to the requester as PDF files.
  • Allow 4-7 days (sometimes more, depending on the obscurity or age of the article) for documents to arrive