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HC Libraries 101

Created by our Peer Research Consultants!

Accessing Resources

InterLibraryLoan (ILL)

Need a book or article for class? Can't find it at Holy Cross or on Google? Try InterLibraryLoan (ILL)!

What is ILL and how can it help me?

In short, ILL is a borrowing service that Holy Cross has with libraries all over Massachusetts and around the United States. This interlibrary service allows students to request books, articles, chapters in books, AV material, and much more at no cost!

How do I access/navigate ILL?

If it is your first time using ILL, you will need to set up an account using your HC username and password - the exact same one you use for STAR. You will be asked to select a Holy Cross Library Location where you will pick up and drop off your ILL requests.

Then, create a new request by clicking on one of the "Doc Delivery Request" or "ILL Request" links. Fill in as much information as you can on the request form - the more information the system has, the faster your request will arrive. To learn more about the status of a request you've already sent in, go to "View → Outstanding Requests" and click on the Transaction Number for your request.

Accessing ILL through CrossSearch

While using CrossSearch, you may find an excellent article, book, or book chapter to help with your research that Holy Cross does not have access to. 

In this case, you can request it through ILL right through CrossSearch's site. Here's how:

  1. Click on the button that says, "Check for Full Text."
  2. On the resulting page, Click on "Interlibrary Loan → Request this Item."
  3. The request form will populate with the information that CrossSearch provides. Of course, you should always check for the accuracy of this information before submitting your request. If you can, also add in information that CrossSearch missed.

Where do I pick up/access my ILL request?

  • You will get an email notifying you when your request has arrived at Holy Cross. Once you get that email, all you have to do is go to the Circulation Desk at your preferred Library Location, tell them you have an arrived ILL request and give them your last name.
  • Lots of ILL material can be accessed completely online! If you requested book chapter(s) or articles, you will receive an email that the material you are interested in is available to view. To view it, go to, "View → Electronically Received Articles." You should download your documents on this page within 14 days of receiving them, so they don't expire.

Want to learn a bit more and try it out? You can visit the library's page about ILL to learn more, and/or log in to the ILL Portal.

If you have a citation, but can't find the book or article, you may be able to track down the full-text of the article directly, by using the E-Journals search. 

  • If you know the name of the journal that the article you are looking for is located in, you can type its name into the E-Journals search. When you find the journal, you will be able to choose the specific volume and issue you are looking for in order to find your article.
  • All of the information that you need to track down an article is located in its citation -- like this one below! Note that the | is not part of the citation -- these symbols mark where each component of the citation begins and ends.  
Murnaghan, Sheila. |"The Trials of Telemachus: Who Was the 'Odyssey' Meant For?" | 

Author                                                       Title of Article

Arethusa | 35, |no. 1 |(2002): |133-153. | 

            Journal            Vol.   Issue         Date           Pages        DOI or stable URL
  • If you can't find your article in the E-Journals, you can also enter the citation directly into Google Scholar. You may be able to locate a PDF of the article that you are looking for. 

 Instructions for using the E-Journals search to find articles