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Interlibrary Loan

Interlibrary loan (ILL) is a helpful service provided by libraries, including MHCC’s libraries. It lets people borrow resources like books or articles from libraries that are not their own. This comes in handy when a library doesn't have a certain item. If you need an item MHCC does not have, we can ask another library to share the item, making it easier for you to access the materials you need. MHCC has two ways to access additional materials:

  • MHCC interlibrary loan
  • Summit and Orbis Alliance partnership

Only current MHCC faculty, staff, and students may request items. We fill requests as quickly as possible. Our goal is to process every request within 24 business hours, depending on staff availability.

Need help with a loan request? Email ILL staff or call 503-491-7610.

Request Materials through Interlibrary Loan

To request items through ILL, first set up an account. You can then request books, media, and articles using the MHCC request form.

Set up your ILL account

Request books or media items through ILL

Request articles through ILL

For physical items such as books, you will receive an email notification confirming the arrival of your item, which will be placed on the hold shelf for seven days. The delivery time depends on the lending library's location. Materials from the pacific northwest typically arrive within two to four days, while items from libraries in other parts of the county may take longer.

ILL items will be checked out to you based on the loan rules of the institution from which the item originated. While we can request the lending institution to renew items, this option may not always be available, and sometimes the lending institution requires the return of items sooner than we would prefer.

How to pick up ILL materials

You can pick up ILL materials from either the Maywood or Gresham libraries. Journal articles will be sent directly to the email address you provided on your request form. Please note that textbooks are not accessible through ILL. If you need a textbook, ask your instructor to place a copy on reserve or check the MHCC catalog for an older edition.

Requests submitted during library business hours will be processed on the same day, if possible. Delays may occur if we need to request the item from multiple libraries or if the request form is incomplete. Everyone is limited to ten simultaneous requests. MHCC libraries only use free sources for interlibrary loan. Requests incurring costs will be declined.

Tips for interlibrary loan use

  • Before submitting an ILL request, please check that the item you need is not locally available. Check for your item in the Summit catalog, which includes college libraries in the Pacific Northwest.
  • For articles missing full-text results in our databases, use the ILL request form. If you encounter such articles, you will find a link labeled "Full Text Finder" under the results. Click that link to go to the ILL article request page.
  • When completing the ILL request form, provide as much information as possible about the item you need. This helps staff process your request accurately and as quickly as possible.
  • Keep in mind that ILL requests rely on collaboration with the requesting library. So a specific turnaround time cannot be guaranteed. Plan ahead and allow enough time for both MHCC to make the request and the lending library to fulfill it.

Summit and Orbis Alliance partnership

MHCC uses Summit to help you access additional resources. Summit is a combined library catalog of the Orbis Cascade Alliance with more than 30 member colleges and universities in Washington and Oregon. Through Summit, you have access to millions of books, DVDs, videotapes, sound recordings, government documents, and more. 

See the complete list of Orbis Alliance members

Use Summit when the item you need is not available at MHCC. You search Summit like any other library catalog, including by keyword, title, or author. Go to the MHCC library webpage, and then follow the instructions below.

  • Make sure you are browsing the MHCC + Summit Libraries area of our catalog.
  • Click "Find/Request" on the desired item
  • Sign in to enable request options.
  • Enter your MyMHCC credentials when prompted.
  • Click "Place Summit request" and choose a pickup location.
  • Click "Request" button to finalize.
  • How to receive Summit materials

How to pick up Summit materials

You will need to log in to your MHCC library account online and have a valid picture ID to make requests and pick them up. You can pick up materials at MHCC or elsewhere. If you’d like to pick up materials at a location other than MHCC, you must first go to the library in person and sign up as an adopted patron. This is for when you want to pick up at another Orbis Cascade Alliance member library or to pick up materials owned by Orbis Cascade.

Most Summit items arrive within three to five business days. Summit items are delivered directly to MHCC libraries Monday through Friday. Patrons will be notified by email. Items not picked up within seven days must then be returned to the lending library.

View the status of your Summit request

Books check out for six weeks, with no renewal. Media items check out for six days, with no renewal. Summit items can be returned to any Orbis Cascade Alliance member library. Please be sure to return items with attached labels or straps.

Late fees and replacement costs for Summit items

Summit charges are significantly higher than those assessed for MHCC library items and are not negotiable under the consortia policy. Replacement costs and fees total a minimum of $90. When an item on your account has been billed, all library borrowing will be blocked until the item is returned and the fine paid.

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