ILL Purchase on Demand Policy

Created October 2009; Revised June 2012; Revised March 2017; Revised August 2023

Many libraries will not lend recent imprints. Prior to the adoption of this policy, JMU Libraries’ Interlibrary Loan would notify the patron that the book was unavailable due to recent publication and the request would be canceled. The patron would then either have to wait until lending restrictions are removed, until the requestor notified JMU librarians to place the order, or until the book arrived on approval. In an attempt to be proactive with user requests, JMU Libraries adopted an ILL Purchase-on-Demand policy.  This policy meets the dual goal of filling a user’s immediate need for a recently published book and of adding a potentially high-use title to the collection.

When patrons request items through ILL which are recent publications; only available internationally; only available as an eBook (and unavailable through ILL); or have limited/no holdings on OCLC, those items will be rush ordered by the Acquisitions Coordinator within Collections Administration. Items must be in scope of JMU Libraries’ Collections Policies and meet the following additional criteria:


  • Price limit: $250 for most books; exceptions occur on a case-by-case basis
  • Electronic is the preferred format; exceptions may occur to accommodate patron needs and format availability
  • Interlibrary loan staff may also use their discretion to acquire other items through purchase on demand when the cost for purchase is lower than the cost to loan an item.


  • Dissertations
  • Test Preparation Materials
  • Audio CDs (music, audiobooks)
  • Popular DVDs
  • Workbooks
  • Reprints
  • Obvious popular titles (such as Diet Books, Cookbooks, Self-Help, Get-Rich-Quick books)
  • Travel Books

Source(s) of Authority: Director, Interlibrary Loan & Course Reserves in collaboration with Collections Administration