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Interlibrary Loan and Document Delivery: FAQ

A guide to Interlibrary Loan and document delivery services at Himmelfarb.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How do I log into Documents2Go? What is it? Documents2Go, or 'Docs2Go' is an online portal that is accessible by GW Faculty, Students and Staff. First time users can login with your GW NetId and password.
  • How do I submit an ILL request?  All Interlibrary Loan and document delivery requests are submitted through our Docs2Go online portal. Please be as detailed as possible with your citation; for articles, including the PubMed ID (if your article is indexed in PubMed) will greatly help us in processing your request.
  • How long does it take?   Articles are normally delivered within 24-72 hours. Rush service guarantees delivery within one business day; there is an extra $10 charge for this service. Books can take 1-2 weeks, depending on where they are shipped from. If we are unable to provide Rush service articles within 24 hours from payment acceptance, you will not be charged. 
  • How will I be notified when my material arrives?  If you have requested a book, we will email you when it is ready for pickup. Please pickup and drop off your ILL item at the Himmelfarb circulation desk to ensure that it is checked in properly. 
  • What format will my article be in, and how will I receive it? When we receive your article and are ready to deliver it to you, we will send you an email informing you that your article is ready to be viewed on your Documents2Go account. From there you can download the article to PDF format for your records. 
  • Will I have to pay?  SMHS, GWSPH, and SON students, staff, and faculty are entitled to 15 free ILL requests per semester to support their research. Children's National Health System patrons, residents and fellows of accredited programs are covered by the Graduate Medical Education office or their respective programs. 
  • Can I include my department's Banner index number?   Yes; we will require authorization from your department head granting us permission to charge your department's Banner account. An email is sufficient for this purpose. 
  • Can I renew my ILL book?  Renewals are granted at the discretion of the lending library. Should you need a renewal, please contact the ILL office and we will request one from the lender. We will notify you if the renewal is granted, with a new due date, or denied--in which case, the original due date applies. 
  • What happens if I lose or damage my ILL book?  Libraries lend us their materials as a courtesy, and borrowers are expected to treat ILL items on loan with the same care and attention as Himmelfarb resources. Lost or damaged materials are subject to any and all additional replacement fees levied by the lending library. 
  • How may I contact the ILL staff? We are happy to answer any questions you may have about the Himmelfarb ILL program. Feel free to reach us at (202) 994-2860 or by email at

Documents2Go Statuses

While waiting for your article or book to arrive through ILL, you may notice the status of your request changes as it is processed. Listed below are a few descriptions of the most commonly seen statuses in your Docs2Go account. 

  • Awaiting Copyright Clearance: ILL staff must verify that each request complies with certain copyright regulations. If the request meets these criteria, it will be routed for further processing. 
  • Awaiting Request Processing: Once a request passes the Copyright Clearance, it will remain in this queue until it is processed by a staff member.
  • Awaiting Acquisitions Review: Occasionally, requests that meet certain criteria will be referred to the Acquisitions Librarian for purchase consideration. We will inform you if your request meets these conditions. 
  • Request Sent: Your request is being routed to libraries that appear to own the title. 
  • Awaiting Odyssey Processing: This request has been delivered from the lender and is waiting electronic delivery processing on our end. 
  • Checked Out To Customer: This means your ILL book has arrived and is checked out to your account, until the item is returned to the circulation desk at Himmelfarb. 
  • Cancelled by ILL Staff: In most situations, if an article is cancelled it’s because we already own it, it was a duplicate request, or the user has requested us to cancel it. If for whatever reason you are not sure why your request might have been cancelled, feel free to contact us. 
  • Request Finished: This status refers to requests that have been closed.  

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