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Guide for Journal Source Finders

A guide to assist journal staff retrieve commonly cited sources.

What to do when you can't find a source on-campus

1. Check with the reference librarians.

We might be able to unearth something for you.

2. Check with your article editor.

Your editor might decide to contact the author, or, if that fails, to coordinate an interlibrary loan (ILL) request.

Interlibrary Loan (ILL)

About Interlibrary Loan

If an item is unavailable and the author cannot provide it, the Law Library can try to get it for you from another library. This process works best when you need only a few pages that can be faxed or sent electronically. Please note: the law library will not request a hardcopy version of a work that is available in a reliable digital facsimile. Consult a librarian if you have questions.

In cases where you need an entire book, the library may, as a last resort, try to borrow it from another library.  This process can take several weeks, and is not always successful. Just like works that you check out of other campus libraries or other libraries in the metro area, the ILL item will be checked out for a limited period of time to you, and you will be personally responsible for it. The loan period is determined by the library that lends the book. Therefore, ILL items cannot be checked out to your journal's library account.

How to Submit an Interlibrary Loan Request

The lead editor for an article should coordinate any ILL requests. This avoids problems such as multiple requests for the same item and requests that do not specify all the pages needed.

Submit requests to x-asap@umn.edu.  (If you have bibliographic information (author, title, publication informatiion) from MNCAT, WorldCat, or another source, please paste it into the request.)

Please indicate in the request if the item should be at the University of Minnesota, but is missing or if pages are missing.  (This will speed up the request.)

TIP: For all ILL requests where we ask for part of an article or a book, we routinely ask for the title page.  You do not have to specify that you need this information.


University of Minnesota Law Library
Reference Desk: 612-625-4309 • Circulation Desk: 612-625-4300 • Contact Us