Frequently Asked Questions

What is OhioLINK?
What is the OhioLINK Library Catalog?
Who can borrow items through OhioLINK?
How do I request an item?
How long do requested items take to arrive? Will I be notified when they’re ready for pick up?
Must my requested OhioLINK items be delivered to my campus?
How can I see what OhioLINK materials I have requested or checked out?
How do I renew an OhioLINK book online?
How will I know when my requested items are ready for pick up?
What is the loan period for items borrowed through OhioLINK?
What are the fines for overdue OhioLINK items?
Whom should I contact about problems requesting materials, fine disputes, etc.?
How do I cancel a request for an OhioLINK item?
What if I can’t find the item I’m looking for?
What is the Center for Research Libraries?
What is authorized use of OhioLINK?



What is OhioLINK?

OhioLINK is a state-funded consortium of Ohio university and college member libraries and the State Library of Ohio. Students, faculty members, and staff members affiliated with OhioLINK institutions can request materials online, view journal articles online, search authoritative databases, and make use of other OhioLINK services that enhance research and education.


What is the OhioLINK Library Catalog?

The OhioLINK Library Catalog is a virtual statewide library that displays information for items owned by OhioLINK libraries. The catalog provides bibliographic descriptions and indicates where copies are located and whether or not copies are available. The OhioLINK Central Catalog also allows authorized individuals to identify, request, and borrow materials online, for delivery to a member library of their choice.

Resources described:
books · journals and periodicals · audiovisual materials · sound recordings · electronic resources · government documents · archives and manuscripts · maps · music scores.


Who can borrow items through OhioLINK?

People who are registered users at OhioLINK libraries, and those with a library account at one of the SearchOhio libraries, have access to a virtual statewide library. Books, some audiovisual items, and other materials that are not available locally can be requested through the OhioLINK Central Catalog's member libraries.


How do I request an item?

Find the desired book or item in the OhioLINK Central Catalog. The system looks for an available copy and selects a lending library.

  • Click REQUEST THIS ITEM.
  • Select your institution from the list.
  • Fill in your name and ID number.
  • Select where you want to pick up the item. You can pick up the item at any participating OhioLINK library that is convenient.
  • The system validates the request and sends the request to the lending library.
  • The item will be delivered within several weekdays to the pickup location you requested.
  • Some schools send a courtesy email notification when the item is ready to pick up.

Contact your library for borrowing information and loan policies. Only items that are not available at your own institution may be requested in this way.


How long do requested items take to arrive? Will I be notified when items are ready for pick up?

If the items were available at a library when you requested them, they should be ready for pick up in 4-5 weekday business days at the library you chose as a pickup location. You can check on the status of your requested items by viewing your personal library record/account in your library's catalog. Once you are logged in, go to the requests (holds) portion of your Library Record to follow the progress of your request:

  • REQUESTED: the request is successfully placed in the system queue
  • IN TRANSIT: the item is on the way from the owning library
  • OHIOLINK REC'D: the item is received at your school

Some OhioLINK libraries also send courtesy e-mail notices about OhioLINK items that are ready for pick up. Contact your library for details on e-mail notices or with questions about checking your record to see delivery status of your requested item.


Must my requested OhioLINK items be delivered to my campus?

OhioLINK books and other library materials are delivered to any participating library.

  • Change the "pickup institution" from the drop-down menu to a convenient location when you want to pickup your items at a different location.
  • Take your student ID with you to check out materials.  If you do not have a regular student ID, you can present any picture ID but you will need to know your credentials for checking out material including name, ID, and PIN if appropriate.  If you are not sure what your credentials are, check with your home institution library.

You may also return OhioLINK items to any participating library.


How can I see what OhioLINK materials I have requested or checked out?

You can see what OhioLINK items you’ve requested or checked out by viewing your personal library record/account in your local library catalog.

Only your institution can see your personal information on your library record/account. Please contact your library if you have questions about viewing your record/account. OhioLINK staff will not be able to see your account or help you with questions about your account.


How do I renew OhioLINK books online?

Renewals can be made within 7 days of the due date. You can renew OhioLINK books online, up to 6 times, as long as another user has not requested the item. Here's how:

  • Log into your library record/account from your local library catalog
  • Click on “# items currently checked out”
  • Sort by Due Date to see what's due soon
  • Select the items you want to renew
  • Click on “renew selected items”
  • Watch to see the system display successful renewals or a message that not all items were renewed. Return those items and order another copy.

Non-book items can be renewed up to 3 times as long as no hold from another patron has been placed on them. If you have problems renewing OhioLINK books, please contact your library.


How will I know when my requested items are ready for pick up?

Generally, OhioLINK items are ready for pick up in 4-5 weekday business days. You can check on the status of your requested items by viewing your personal library record/account in your local library catalog. Please contact your library if you have questions about checking your record/account.


What is the loan period for items borrowed through OhioLINK?

  • Books are loaned for 3 weeks and may be renewed up to 6 times (up to a maximum of 21 weeks) as long as another user does not request the book. Books loaned to faculty users have a 6 week (42 days) loan period and may be renewed up to 6 times (up to a maximum of 42 weeks) as long as another user does not request the book.
  • Non-book items are loaned for 1 week and can be renewed up to 3 times as long as another user does not request the item.
  • Some items may not be renewed because they have been requested by another user. Return items promptly, and request a new copy.


What are the fines for overdue OhioLINK

Fines for OhioLINK materials are set by a coordinating committee of the members' librarians.

  • Overdue OhioLINK item fines are $0.50/day.
  • Returning an item has been billed and/or is more than 30 days overdue will incur a $50 fine.

Remember that if an item is due, you can often return it and order another copy from another institution.


Whom should I contact about problems requesting materials, fine disputes, etc?

Please contact your local library for the best and fastest assistance. OhioLINK staff cannot access individual library accounts/records or help with fine disputes.


How do I cancel a request for an OhioLINK item?

You may cancel a request for an OhioLINK item online when viewing your circulation record online in your local library catalog. If you need assistance canceling a request, please contact your own library.


What if I can’t find the item I’m looking for?

The catalog does not cite specific articles within journals, or many poems, plays, and works within anthologies or collections. If you are looking for journal articles, see OhioLINK Databases . Your local librarians can help you find items in your school's resources as well as in OhioLINK resources.

If you are looking for a book that is not available at your library or any other OhioLINK library, please talk to the Interlibrary Loan department or librarians at your own library so they may verify information and help you locate a copy.

Depending on the cataloging policies of individual libraries, OhioLINK may not reflect all materials held by every member library. Your library staff can help you locate items from other resources.

Some common reasons why you might not find what you are looking for include items that may not be fully represented in the catalog:

  • journals that have ceased publication
  • non-book items (audiovisuals, sound recordings, music scores, maps, archives and manuscripts, museum objects)
  • items acquired before 1971
  • government documents
  • microform sets
  • special collections.


What is the Center for Research Libraries?

The Center for Research Libraries is a cooperative research library and depository located in Chicago. CRL has specialized and rare materials that complement and supplement the collections of its member libraries, including books, journals, newspapers, archives, and microform sets.

  • OhioLINK libraries participate in a group membership in CRL.
  • CRL's cataloged books are found in the OhioLINK Central Catalog with the location code Ctr. Research Lib.
  • These CRL cataloged materials may be requested through the standard OhioLINK online borrowing procedures, but may take an extra day or two to arrive

CRL also has many items that are not in the catalog, including state documents of all U.S. states, college catalogs, textbooks, and foreign dissertations. Loans of such non-cataloged items can be arranged through the interlibrary loan staff of your library.


Authorized Use of OhioLINK:

OhioLINK is a library information system provided for the faculty, students and staff of OhioLINK institutions. The system contains menus with instructions on how to use the resources presented. Patrons are authorized to make selections and follow keystroke instructions as provided by on-screen displays.

Any attempts to leave the menus through keystrokes not suggested by the system may be interpreted as unauthorized use of the system. Unauthorized use of OhioLINK is prohibited and will be considered to be in violation of OhioLINK’s rules and policies for use of its computers and network.

Unauthorized use may result in loss of local as well as OhioLINK privileges.