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Interlibrary Loan & Document Delivery Services (ILL/DDS)

Our Interlibrary Loan department can help you obtain materials to support your research and classwork. There is no charge for this service.

We can help you get:

  • PDF copies of journal articles and book chapters owned by Maxwell Library
  • PDF copies of journal articles and book chapters not owned by Maxwell Library
  • Books, DVDs, and audio materials mailed to Maxwell Library for you to borrow

Questions? Visit the ILL FAQ section on this page or email

Manage your Interlibrary Loan/Document Delivery Requests:

To login to ILL, use your BSU username (everything that comes before the @ in your BSU email) and password.


Request Items Directly from Massachusetts Libraries:

You can request books, DVDs, music, and other physical items from hundreds of libraries statewide through ComCat (the Commonwealth Catalog). This is a great place to search before submitting an ILL request. The material is delivered to Maxwell Library for quick and easy pickup.  

To login to ComCat, click “Please Login” in the top right corner of the page and from the drop-down menu, select BRIDGEW: Bridgewater State University. It will ask if you are Staff or Patron, select Patron and it will log you in automatically.



What is ILL/DDS?

ILL/DDS stands for interlibrary loan and document delivery services. When you login to your ILL account, our ILL staff process your requests quickly and efficiently. Our ILL interfaces provides you with the ability to perform tasks such as viewing, editing, and canceling your requests. It also provides access to electronically received items.  

Who may use interlibrary loan?

Interlibrary loan services are offered to current BSU students, faculty and staff.  

How will I know when my material arrives?

You will receive an email in your BSU email account. If you request an item that can be delivered electronically (e.g., an article), a link to the PDF file will appear in your ILLiad account under “Electronically Received Items” Physical items will be held for you at the Library Services Desk. 

How much does it cost to use interlibrary loan and document delivery?

The service is free to students, faculty and staff. If there is a cost associated with a particular item that the library can’t cover, our ILL staff will contact you. 

How long does it take to receive a loan or article owned by another library?

It generally takes approximately 7 to 10 days. Requests are submitted in the order they are received. If a large number of requests are submitted by one individual, they are staggered to allow fair access. Turnaround time depends on how far the item is traveling. If you have questions about your request, please contact us. 

How long does it take to receive a loan or article owned by Maxwell Library?

It generally takes approximately 1 to 2 working days. If an item is not immediately available, we will notify you by email. If your request is urgent, contact the ILL department at or 508-531-1706. 

How long are electronically received items available?

Electronic items are available for 30 days. You may continue to view them during this time, print them, or download them to your computer. You can also choose to delete them. 

Are there things that I cannot borrow through the library's interlibrary loan service?

All libraries have certain materials they prefer not to loan. In such cases, many libraries will photocopy selected pages for use. Materials that generally cannot be borrowed include dissertations, journals, reference items, and special collections. U.S. Copyright Law may restrict how much material can be borrowed in the form of photoduplication.  

Can materials be renewed?

Interlibrary materials are not semester loans, regardless of BSU status, and are the property of another institution. Renewals are at the discretion of the lending library. Renewal requests must be submitted 5 days prior to the due date. Contact the ILL department if requesting a renewal past that deadline. 

What happens if I don't return items?

If material with a due date is not returned in a timely manner, you may be blocked from further ILL transactions. If an item is lost, you will be charged the replacement cost per the owning library’s policy.  


ILL Lending Policy for Other Libraries

The following policies are for other libraries requesting items from the Maxwell Library via Interlibrary Loan (ILL). Individuals should contact their own public, academic, or corporate library to make a request. The Maxwell Library lends both domestically and internationally.

Please forward any questions to or 508-531-1706.

We prefer requests received via OCLC Resource Sharing, but will honor the ALA form or an email request. Telephone requests are not accepted.


Maxwell Library is a member of several consortia and also has several resource sharing agreements. In general, if a library identifies itself as a free supplier or reciprocal lender in the OCLC policy directory, the Maxwell Library will provide ILL services free of charge. Otherwise, we charge based on the borrowing library’s own lending policies. ILL Fee Management (IFM) is the preferred method of payment.


All shipments (beyond our regional courier service) are made via US Postal Service. International shipments are shipped via US Postal Service International mail.

Eligible for Lending

  • Books
  • Audiovisual Materials
  • Dissertations and theses, if a circulating copy is available
  • Certain Reference materials (conditional upon approval by the Access Services Librarian)

Non-circulating Materials

  • Reference (exceptions: see above)
  • Special Collections and Archives materials (unless prior approval is obtained. Please contact the Archives and Special Collections Librarian for assistance:
  • Paper editions of newspapers
  • Maps
  • Microfiche and Microfilm (scanned articles may be shared)
  • Restricted-access Tests (Educational Resource Center)
  • Instructional Aids and Test Prep materials (Educational Resource Center)
  • Reserve Materials

Loan Periods

The typical loan period is four weeks with an option to renew for an additional four weeks. Items with outstanding holds will not be renewed.

Copying/Scanning Policies

Maxwell Library will provide digitized scans of journal articles, book chapters, or other materials in our collection for borrowing libraries provided they do not violate any copyright restrictions. Frail or old items that would be damaged by the scanning process will not be copied.

Lost/Replacement Policy

If an ILL item that we have lent is lost or damaged after leaving our premises, the replacement or repair fees are the responsibility of the borrowing library. We will invoice libraries for materials not returned to Bridgewater State University. A lending block may be placed on institutions that have borrowed items that are more than 30 days overdue.