Requesting Materials

The Library supports the University's research, teaching, and learning activities by provisioning access to material in the most appropriate format and by the most effective means. The Library does this by:

  • Purchasing material in line with collection management guidelines.
  • Supporting open access publishing and infrastructures that aid open research.
  • Borrowing books or obtaining extracts of materials from other institutions as part of our Inter-Library Loan and Document Supply services.
  • Ensuring that material on loan can be requested so that other users can borrow it.
  • Accepting appropriate donations of books and archival material.


The Library holds a vast array of print and eBooks in our collection for you to use and access, but there will be times when we do not hold a text that you require for your research or teaching. In cases like these, you can request the material and we will investigate purchasing it for the Library. Depending on why the book is needed requests can be made via:

  • The Book Recommendation form.
  • Adding the resource to a reading list.
  • Submitting an Inter-Library Loan request.
  • Placing a hold request on an item held by the Library but currently on loan.

Please note that submission of a purchase or Inter Library-Loan request does not guarantee the Library will obtain the resource. This could be due to a number of factors, for example budgetary constraints, or non-availability of the requested item for purchase or borrowing. The Library will keep you informed if we are unable to obtain the item you need.

Book Recommendation form

For resources to be used for personal study, research, or to support our aim of diversifying our collection, please fill in the Book Recommendation form providing as much bibliographic information as possible. This form can also be used to request additional copies of books we already hold.

Academics requesting books for reading lists

For resources that are being used on a module reading list, please add the details to the relevant module reading list on the reading list system. The Library is alerted every time edits are made to a reading list and will then endeavour to provision access to these resources, taking into account cohort sizes and whether the text is a key reading. For resources made available digitally, our preferred format, we will ensure links are in place so students can access the texts directly from the reading list.

There is information on our webpages on how to edit reading lists, as well as guidance on best practice.

Inter-Library Loan and Document Supply

If you need a specific extract from a book, or an individual journal article, our Document Supply service may be able to help with that. Please complete an online Inter-Library Loan request form and we will try to obtain the required item from another Library for you. It is also possible to borrow books, conference proceedings and theses from other libraries if they are only needed short term, for individuals, or if they are no longer available to purchase. We also supply standards, technical reports and other sorts of documents where they are available.

More information about the service, including access to our online request form is available on our Inter-Library Loan and Document Supply service webpages.

Placing hold requests on items currently out on loan

Any long loan item can be requested via the Library Catalogue if all of the available copies are out on loan. Login to your account and click on 'place a title level request.' A recall notice will be sent out for the book and the borrower will have 7 days to return the item. Once the book is returned, it will be placed on hold for you and a 'book waiting' notification will be sent to your University email address. Hold requests can be collected from the self-collection shelves located on level 3 of the Library and issued at the self-service machines.

If a book is out on loan and you would like to borrow a copy, please place a hold request on the item. When a title is being heavily requested, the Library is notified and we will look to purchase more copies. If a title is not being requested, we assume that the current holdings are sufficient.


The Library subscribes to over 40,000 eJournals to support the research and teaching of the institution. Most of these are via subscriptions to journal packages but we also have individual subscriptions to over 300 print and eJournals. On an annual basis, we review these individual titles and evaluate whether they are the most appropriate titles to support our students, researchers and academics. We use qualitative and quantitative data to make evidence-based decisions on the titles we should take. Any requests for new individual journal subscriptions are also reviewed at this point and decisions on what titles we will be subscribing to for the next calendar year are made by the start of September.

If you would like to make a recommendation for a new journal or serial, please complete a Serial Request form. As the Library budget is fully committed, to take on new subscriptions, we may need to make cancellations or obtain additional funding. Due to this, it would be helpful when completing the form if you explain why the resource is needed so we can make a business case if required.

Please note that all new journal subscriptions run from January to December.

Databases, journal collections, read and publish agreements, and infrastructures that support open research

The Library purchases and subscribes to a wide array of databases and audio-visual material, as well as numerous journals via package deals with publishers, to support the teaching and learning, research, and wellbeing of our users. We spend over £3.3 million on content resources each year and nearly 80% of this goes on databases and journal packages.

To ensure we get the best value for money, and provide support for all of our Schools, Professional Services, and the needs of our diverse users, we are committed to regularly reviewing the resources that we subscribe to. We use qualitative and quantitative data, looking at number of usages, cost per use, and publishing history, but also understanding that some resources, although expensive, are critical for certain disciplines.

Academic staff that would like to suggest resources they feel the Library should consider purchasing, subscribing to, or supporting, are encouraged to complete the Database and Journal Package Request form. Students or doctoral researchers should speak to their supervisor or School in the first instance.

To ensure the Library can make informed decisions on requests for new resources, it is important we are provided with details of what the resource is, why it is needed, who will be using it, and why it is different and unique to other resources that we currently subscribe to. This is important as the Library budget is fully committed, so if new resources are needed, we may need to make a business case for them. To help with this, wherever possible, the Library will try to arrange trials of resources being requested. These trials will all take place in February, and we will ask for feedback on the trials so we can effectively evaluate these resources and if required, use the feedback provided to help make a bid for extra funding at budget submission.


The Library will accept donations of books brought into the Library but reserves the right to decide whether the items should be added to stock. Once received by the Library, we will review the donation, taking into account the subject, duplication of existing stock, age, and condition of the item. Resulting actions may include adding to stock, passing to charitable organisations (e.g. Better World Books,) or discarding the book.

For donations of archival material, such as papers or research relating to Loughborough University and predecessors, please contact the University Archivist in the first instance. Details of our donation and policy and conditions can be found on our Archive webpages.


Please contact the Library Content Provision team if you have any questions about content resources.