For items you need but cannot source through our Library stock and electronic resources, the Library Service offers a free* Document Supply service to staff and students.  The service supplies not only journal articles but also whole journal issues, book chapters, whole books, theses, conference proceedings and papers, technical reports and standards (subject to Copyright Law).

*Masters students are entitled to 10 free requests per year and Staff, PhD, EngD, DBA and MPhil students 30 free requests per year (for non-commercial use only).

Wherever possible we use the British Library’s Secure Electronic Delivery (SED) service so you will have prompt access to your requested document via email. Some items however need to be posted out. Most requests are satisfied within a week, although some may take longer.

How do I access the service?

Go to either the Kings Norton Library Search or the MIRC Library Search and click on the link on the left to ‘Request an Interlibrary loan’.  Login and complete the form as accurately as possible.  (This helps us supply your item quickly). If you need any assistance please ask a member of staff.

I have placed a document supply request.  What happens next?

Printed / photocopied items:
For items such as books, whole journal issues, or entire conference proceedings you will receive an email from us advising you to collect your items from the Kings Norton Library between 8.30am and 8.45pm. Please let us know in advance if you wish to collect items outside these hours. If you are based off-campus but in the UK we will post them to you.

Items delivered using SED:
You will receive an email with a hyperlink to your document. Please note the following:

    • Access to the document lasts for 30 days.
    • During this time you can open the document as often as you wish but only from the computer that you first downloaded it to.
    • You can also print one copy  within 14 days of first downloading it (within the 30 day time period).
    • You can forward the email to another email address as long as you haven’t already opened the link.
    • You will need the FileOpen plug-in to open SED documents which is already installed on campus PCs.  To install it on your own machine visit

What if I am off-campus?
We advise off-campus students to use the SED service where possible.

  • If you are in the UK,  we can post books and other items out to you.
  • For users based outside the UK, please be aware that we are unable to post printed books or document supply items to addresses outside the UK.

Returning loaned items:

Please remember to return the item before the due date or you may incur a fine.  Also be aware that the lending library may ask you to return an item early if it is requested by another customer.

For more information on our document supply service please read our  FAQs or contact our Document Supply team via email:, or telephone: +44 (0)1234 754449.

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