Borrow Direct

Borrow Direct is a rapid physical item request and delivery system. Cornell faculty, staff, and students can search the combined library catalogs of Brown, Columbia, Cornell, Dartmouth, Harvard, University of Pennsylvania, University of Chicago, Johns Hopkins, MIT, Duke, Stanford, Princeton and Yale, a collection of over 90 million volumes, and directly request expedited delivery of circulating items.

  • Submit a request from anywhere, or search for material you need in the Borrow Direct VuFind catalog.
  • Once you locate the item you need, click the “request” button.
  • If you have never used the Borrow Direct or Interlibrary Loan forms before, you will need to fill out a one-time registration form.
  • If the item you need is available from one of the Borrow Direct partner libraries, you will receive a notice when the item arrives.
  • If the item you need is not available, we will attempt to fulfill your request via Interlibrary Loan.
  • Books, printed music, and some audio-visual materials (DVDs, videos, CDs) not owned by Cornell libraries
  • Books, printed music, and some audio-visual materials that are currently unavailable at Cornell, e.g., checked out, lost, missing, etc.
  • Books, printed music, and some audio-visual materials that normally circulate from the partner universities’ collections
  • Books, printed music, and some audio-visual material currently showing as “available” in the Cornell Library catalog
  • E-books
  • Journals, magazines, newspapers, and other serials
  • Photocopies of journal articles, conference proceedings, etc.
  • Reference books, microfilm and other non-circulating material
  • Books from most of our partners’ medical and law libraries
  • If you need an item that is not available from Borrow Direct, your request will be sent to Interlibrary Loan.

Most items will be available for pick-up at the circulation desk of your choosing within 4 working days of the date you placed your request.

Eight weeks (subject to recall by the owning library). Borrow Direct books can be renewed one time for an additional eight weeks. The renewal request can be placed at any time, giving a total loan period of 16 weeks.

Please email to ask for a cancellation.

The first time you use Borrow Direct, Interlibrary Loan and ScanIt you will be asked to register. This is a one-time registration. During your registration you will be asked to select your Interlibrary Loan unit: Olin Library or Law Library. Only Law School faculty, staff, and students should select the Law Library. All other schools should choose Olin Library.

If you have any further questions or can’t find what you need, please ask a librarian, or contact any Interlibrary Loan office directly. Staff are happy to answer any questions via email, phone or in-person.

Olin Library
(607) 255-9564

Law Library
(607) 255-5750

Ask a librarian, or contact Olin Library Interlibrary Services at (607) 255-9564, or If you are interested in Borrow Direct Plus, or are planning to visit a Borrow Direct partner institution and would like to obtain on-site borrowing privileges, please see BorrowDirect Plus.