What is the service?
The Document Supply service provides UCA students and staff with access to books, journal articles and other academic publications that are not already available in the UCA library collection. This service is available free of charge to eligible UCA students and staff, subject to fair usage limits.
Who can use the service and are there any limits?
The following staff and students are eligible to use the service:
- UCA higher education students (undergraduate and Masters level)
- UCA research students (PhD/MPhil level)
- Academic and professional/academic-related staff employed by UCA
There is an annual fair usage limit on the number of Document Supply requests that will be processed free of charge for each UCA student or staff member within a single academic year (September - August). This limit is in place due to the high cost to the University of processing Document Supply requests. Annual limits are as follows:
User Type Annual fair usage limit for free requests Undergraduate student 8 Masters student 15 Research student 25 (plus 2 thesis digitisation requests via EThOS) Academic staff 25 (plus 2 thesis digitisation requests via EThOS) Professional and academic-related staff 15
Should you wish to make requests beyond your fair usage limit, this is possible but such requests will be chargeable at the subsidised rate of £8.00 per request.
What can I request?
You can request the following types of publication through Document Supply:
- Book chapters
- Journal/periodical articles
- Conference papers
- Doctoral theses (can only be requested by research students and academic staff)
Where will my items come from?
The majority of Document Supply items are sourced from the British Library. If the British Library is unable to supply the item, we will contact other UK university libraries to attempt to locate a copy.
In some cases, where we believe that a requested item will be useful to other UCA students and staff, we may choose to purchase a copy for the UCA library collection rather than request it from another library. In this situation the purchased item will be reserved and loaned to you as a regular UCA library item.
How do I submit a request?
Before making a Document Supply request, you should always check that the item you need is not already available in the UCA library collection across our four campuses; to do this simply search for the item in the library catalogue and/or article search. Please remember that we will only submit Document Supply requests for items that are not already available to you in the UCA library collection. If you are unsure simply ask at your campus Gateway Desk.
Once you are ready to submit your request please follow these steps:
- Go to the UCA Library Catalogue and select the Requesting Material link in the top right menu.
- Log in using the number on your Student or Staff ID card and your library PIN. Unless you have changed it, your PIN will usually be the first 4 digits of your ID number.
- Select which type of publication you wish to request using the pull-down menu.
- Fill in the request form with as much information as possible. The minimum information required is an author and a title. If you require a specific edition, make sure you include which edition you need, the full publication details and that you specify that it is this edition you require in the Comments area of the form. Then click Send.
How will items be supplied to me?
Journal articles, book chapters and conference papers are supplied as PDFs or paper copies that you can keep for personal use. PDFs supplied by the British Library use copy protection technology and you will therefore need to register for a free British Library On-Demand account to use these files (see separate instructions).
Books are supplied on a loan basis and must be returned by the due date provided to you when you collect the book. The loan will normally be for at least 3 weeks, but this will vary depending on the requirements of the external library which owns the book. We will send an email reminder to your UCA email address shortly before each Document Supply loan is due back.
How do I download and read PDF journal articles supplied through the service?
Please see our separate guide How to view British Library PDF Journal Articles for full instructions.
How long does it take?
On average, it takes around 10 days for items to arrive. It can take however longer than this if we are not able to get your item from the British Library or your request is placed on a waiting list. We therefore ask that you allow a minimum of 10 working days between the date you place your request and the date by which you need your item.
How will I know what is happening with my request?
UCA Library staff will email to let you know when your request has been submitted and despatched. They will also inform you if the request has been cancelled or delayed for any reason. Gateway staff at your campus will let you know either by phone or email when items are available for collection. Email updates will be sent to your UCA email account.
How much does it cost?
The service is free for eligible UCA users for requests within your annual fair usage allowance. If you wish to submit requests beyond your allowance, these are however charged at £8.00 per request.
Does the service charge fines?
Yes, Document Supply loan books that are not returned by the stated due date will be subject to fines of 50p a day. These will be added to your UCA Library account.
If you lose a Document Supply book, you will be charged the full replacement cost as specified by the library which owns the book. In the case of British Library books, this charge is over £170.
Can I renew/extend Document Supply loans?
Yes, you can request up to two renewals of each Document Supply loan. You must proactively contact the Gateway Services team at your campus to request a renewal, and this must be done in advance of the due back date. Renewals are subject to the agreement of the library that owns the book and are not guaranteed.
There is no charge for renewals. However, if you do not request a renewal before the due date then overdue fines will be charged at the rate of 50p a day until you return the book. Please note that automatic renewals do not apply for Document Supply loans, as these books are not owned by UCA.
Why has my request been cancelled?
There are various reasons why a Document Supply request may have to be cancelled:
- The item is already available in the UCA library collection, either online or through the Cross-Campus Loans service.
- The item is unavailable from any other UK library following our checks.
- You have exceeded your annual fair usage allowance for requests and do not wish to pay for a chargeable request.
- You have fines/charges of over £20 on your UCA library account.
If your request has to be cancelled, Library staff will always email you to inform you of the exact reason.
If you have any further questions about the Document Supply service please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.