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Inter Library Loans: Material Available

When UCC Library does not own a copy of a book or journal the Inter Library Loans service may be able to source these from other libraries worldwide.

Books & Book Chapters

In general, books published after 1900 are available for loan, but libraries may refuse to lend material which is older, rare or otherwise valuable (for example, a limited edition), or which forms part of a special collection.  This may also apply to maps, large or outsize volumes (folios), musical scores, whole journal issues and non-book material (e.g. DVD's, microfilm, CDs etc.)

In addition, material in languages other than English may take more time to source.  It is also usually impossible to supply a very recently-published book, as copies generally take several months to become available in other libraries.

Readers should also be aware that lending libraries may specify that their material may only be consulted within the Boole Library. This is almost invariably the case with theses, but it may also apply to rare or valuable books, or to material sourced from copyright libraries in Ireland and Britain (these include Trinity College, Dublin; the Bodleian Library, Oxford; and Cambridge University Library).  

It is also possible to request a book chapter. If available, these are supplied electronically and readers should request them in the same way as a journal article.

Other Material

Audio-visual material, microfilm, microfiche and other non-monograph material is rarely available for loan, though some libraries, particularly those in the US, will lend microfilm.

Where material is not available for loan, readers should consider travelling to a library which holds the item: See Accessing Other Libraries

It is also worth checking if material is available from the other libraries in the Cork area:
Please email Inter Library Loans with any queries.


It is usually possible to supply any journal article, though items which are rare, or in foreign languages may take longer to obtain.  Articles which are very long (usually more than 50 pages) may also take longer.


Summary of thesis types and availability

Type All of Ireland  Britain USA Others
PhD Direct, where available EThOS (except Oxford & Cambridge) Dissertation Express Direct, where available
Masters Direct, where available Direct, where available Dissertation Express Direct, where available



Generally unavailable Generally unavailable Generally Unavailable Generally unavailable


Theses from Irish libraries (including Northern Ireland) are usually available only if the relevant university library holds a copy.  Readers are advised to check the library catalogue before applying.  See links below.


UK PhD theses are generally available for purchase/download from the British Library's EThOS service, and are not available for loan.  For theses not available through  EThOS , for Masters and other types of postgraduate theses, a normal application should be made. 

Please note that Oxford and Cambridge universities do not currently participate in the EThOS scheme, so requests for copies of their theses must be made directly to their Imaging / Reprographic departments (links below).

Libraries in the USA apply differing policies individually.  Most US PhD theses are available for purchase/download directly from Proquest's Dissertation Express service (see below), in which case the holding library is not usually willing to lend.  Even where lending is possible, charges may be substantially higher than the standard loan fee.