Library - Interlibrary Loan

ILLiad - SUNY Poly's interlibrary loan app (for borrowing outside of SUNY)

Getting Materials from Other Libraries

When you request an item that is not available at Poly, there are now two different methods of fulfillment: physical items held by other SUNY libraries are requested via Resource Sharing within the Primo VE discovery service, while non-SUNY physical items and electronic resources like journal articles are requested via ILLiad. You’ll find links to both services throughout the library discovery service. 

Infographic for getting resources from outside the library, comparing and contrasting resource sharing to ILLiad interlibrary loan.

Resource Sharing

Our SUNY libraries work together to provide fast, easy access to millions of physical items in our catalogs through Resource Sharing. 

When you search for a book in Primo, you’ll be able to see if there are other SUNY campuses who own a physical copy they can lend. Log in to Primo with your SITNet ID to make your Resource Sharing request. 

You’ll be sent an email when your item arrives, and it will be available for pickup at the Cayan Library circulation desk or mailed directly to you. 

Interlibrary loan with ILLiad 

When you need to request a journal article, book chapter, or conference proceedings, or when you need to request a book that isn’t held in any SUNY library, your request is processed through ILLiad

Log in to ILLiad with your full SUNY Poly email address and SITNet password to access your account and submit requests. You can also click “request via ILLiad” in Primo VE to access ILLiad. You’ll be sent an email when your resource is available for download or pickup.

For online resources, you can click the link in your notification email or log on to ILLiad with your full SUNY Poly email address and SITNet password  to view all your requested items and download them as you please. For books and physical resources from outside the SUNY catalog, you can pick up your items at the Cayan Library Service Desk or have them shipped to you.

What’s the difference? 

Resource Sharing is intended to help us get your requested resources quickly and easily from our local SUNY network whenever possible. Think of it like putting a book on hold at a public library -- the book you receive might be from your local branch, from a branch across town, or from a library across the county from you, but you’ll get the book that’s available soonest, sent through our local network of libraries. 
Click on “Resource Sharing” wherever you see it in Primo to open the Resource Sharing form, which you can fill out to request a book. 

ILLiad’s interlibrary loan is still the best way to get articles quickly. Because they’re e-resources, your library can quickly connect you with them through ILLiad, and you’ll receive an email with a link to download your article as soon as it’s ready -- generally within 1-3 days. ILLiad also helps you get access to physical materials and books that SUNY libraries don’t have on hand. 
You can request materials of any type by logging into ILLiad with your SITNet ID, or by clicking on “Request via ILLiad” wherever you see it in Primo VE. 

ILLiad is the system you’ve always used to access non-Poly research resources; Resource Sharing is a new way to do so within the SUNY network. In both cases, you’ll fill out a form (or the form will be completed for you) with some details about the item you want to request and receive an email when it’s ready for you to access. In both cases, you can pick up physical items at the Cayan Library or have them shipped to you.

It’s okay! We’re here to help. Contact us at or call 315-792-7245 with any questions about interlibrary loan, resource sharing, or access to articles. 

Who can request material through interlibrary loan?
SUNY Poly students, staff and faculty may request material through interlibrary loan (ILL). If you have a SITNet ID, you can make a request. Empire State College students registered with SUNY Poly and SUNY Poly/CNSE are also allowed to request material through interlibrary loan. Please contact us at if you are an Empire State student and we’ll get you set up.

Is there a limit to the number of requests I can make?
There’s no limit to the number of materials you can request.

How long does it take for materials to arrive?
Requests are almost always filled within two days -- often within a few hours for articles. Books take longer, especially if the book is in high demand.

Resource sharing requests should be filled within a week.

How do I know when my item arrives?
You’ll be sent an e-mail as soon as we receive your material, either notifying you where to download it or where to pick it up.

Where do I pick up and return books?
Books can be picked up and returned at the Cayan Library circulation desk. The library will also ship books to your home address for your convenience.

How do I access articles that have arrived? There are two ways to access articles in ILLiad:
First, you can click on the URL included in the e-mail notification you received, which will take you directly to your article.

Second, you can log on to ILLiad, click on the "Received Articles" link, and then click on the "Transaction Number" of the article you want to see, which will take you directly to the article.

How long may I keep items?
For ILLiad: Journal articles do not need to be returned; your download link will expire at the end of your loan period (usually 30 days). All other items must be returned by the date chosen by the lending library. Most books borrowed via ILLiad are due back in 3 weeks, although this varies by library. For Resource Sharing: Items borrowed via Resource Sharing have longer lending periods, usually 16 weeks. Check the slip that comes with your book for your due date, or log into Primo or ILLiad to view your requests and due dates.

Can an item be recalled early, before the due date?
Yes, a lending library has the right to recall its item at any time. If you get a recall notice, you must return the book immediately.

How do I renew items?
Renewals may be possible and you are welcome to request renewal of your items, but this decision is at the discretion of the lending library, not Cayan Library. Just like when you put a book on hold at a public library, if a book is in demand, it may not be renewed.

Resource Sharing: Submit a request for renewal via Primo by logging into your account and hitting the “Renew” button on the item you’d like to renew. If your item has no other holds on it, and the lending library agrees, you’ll be able to renew your item; if not, you must send it back. Ask the library to try to get you another copy of the same item by sending the transaction number to

ILLiad: Log on to ILLiad and click on the "Checked Out Items" link. Click on the "Transaction Number" of the item you want to renew, and then click on the "Renew Request" link. The lending library will either approve or deny the renewal, at which time you will receive an email letting you know the renewal due date. If the renewal is denied, the item must be returned to the Cayan Library. You can place a new request for the same item by logging into ILLiad. Make sure you check back regularly to ensure the due date the system shows is correct -- there have been issues reported with this before.

What happens if I lose or damage an interlibrary loan?
You are responsible for fees and fines if you lose or damage an interlibrary loan book. Please let us know as soon as possible if you have misplaced a book, or if you have damaged a book, and we will work with the lending library to come to the most agreeable resolution; however, you will still be responsible for the costs associated with losing or damaging the book.

Is there a charge to order?
No. Requests are free! If we cannot get your requested item for you, we will notify you via email.

Can I order material the library owns?
Yes. If we find we own an item you’ve requested via Resource Sharing or via ILLiad, we will send it to you according to your preferences.

Can I order textbooks?
Yes, textbooks may be ordered via both Resource Sharing and ILLiad. However, here are some points you should consider:

  • there is no guarantee you will get the book you request, and you may not know that for several days;
  • some items have a very short borrowing period, sometimes only a few weeks;
  • at most, books loaned from other libraries can be renewed only one time;
  • the decision to allow a renewal is made by the library that owns the book, and there is no guarantee a book can be renewed;
  • it is illegal to photocopy or scan most of or all of a book;
  • requesting a new textbook makes it more likely that you will not be able to renew the book due to demand; and
  • requesting a new textbook also makes it less likely that you’ll receive the book due to demand.

Make sure you look at the course reserves list to see if your textbook is already available at the library for checkout. Not on the course reserves list? Contact and we’ll see what we can do to help you access the items you need, whether via ILL, Resource Sharing, or through our catalog.

Do I have to use e-mail?
Yes. Important messages about ILL activities -- e.g., to pick up material, download articles, and to return overdue material, etc. -- are sent to you via your SUNY Poly e-mail.

Why is my account blocked?
Typically, accounts are only blocked if a book is long overdue or lost, and you have not been in contact with the ILL department about this. If your account is blocked, please contact us as soon as possible and we can find the best resolution.

How do I check the status of my requests?
Check the status of your requests by logging into ILLiad and reviewing the main page, which lists all your outstanding requests. Sometimes this information is limited. If you want more details or have any concerns, please contact us at

What are your policies for borrowing libraries?
Cayan Library's policies for borrowing libraries can be found here.

When are ILL Services Available?
The ILL department is staffed M-F whenever the library is open, and closed Saturdays and Sundays. However, SUNY Poly users may request materials at any time, and most of the time the request will be automatically processed and delivered as soon as the lending library supplies the article.


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