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The University of Massachusetts Amherst

STPEC (Social Thought and Political Economy) Research Guide

Use this guide to find information and research on topics in social thought and political economy

Interlibrary Loan

Interlibrary Loan is a service offered to obtain materials not available from the Library

Logging In
To use Interlibrary Loan, navigate to the front page of Interlibrary Loan 
Click the link at the top of the page labeled Login to Interlibrary Loan/Library Express 


Log in using your SPIRE username and password

Note: if this is your first time using this service, you will be required to create an account after logging in.

Requesting an item

Click New Request
image of request menu for ILL
 and choose the type of material you want to request and enter the bibliographic information on the next page.

And then click 
image of submit information button

Handy tip: many databases will populate the request fields automatically - look for the Ill button on the export menu

Items will be sent to the UMass Library Service Desk on the Lower Level of the Du Bois Tower.

Articles and book chapters will be sent to your Interlibrary Loan account as pdfs


Where else can you look for books?

In the Boston Area (or UNH or UConn):

Get a Boston Library Consortium (BLC) card (issued through UMass):
This card allows you to borrow books from many Boston area academic libraries, including Tufts, BU, BC, Northeastern, and the other UMass Schools.
To apply for a BLC card, contact Circulation at 413-545-2623 for more details.

You can also get materials from local military, public, and academic libraries.

Did you know that your local public library is one of the best places to start searching for information?
Most public libraries subscribe to many of the same general and interdisciplinary databases that UMass does and contain much of the same information
Many public library consortia have the smaller college libraries as members

Did you know that most academic libraries offer borrowing privileges to members of the local community? 
Most offer community borrowing cards to local residents
Contact the circulation desk at the library you want to use to ask about borrowing privileges
Community Borrower cards usually alow you to check out books but not use article databases (except on site). 
Your library card from that college also gives you access to the academic librarians of that institution.


Tip: Most national state universities charge a fee for library cards but many regional colleges and universities, and community colleges do not.



Library Express

What can I do if I am not in the Amherst Area?

Remote users can use Library Express through Interlibrary Loan to request materials from the UMass Libraries.  Request materials through your Interlibrary Loan account and the items will be sent to your home address via USPS Priority Mail with a signature needed for delivery.  You are responsible for making sure that the books are returned safely to the library by the items due date.

To use Library Express, please read the instructions on the Library Express page.

What can't be sent through Library Express?

Media (DVD, CD, or Microforms), non-circulating reference or limited circulation reserve materials cannot be sent through Library Express. Books requested through ILL from other libraries cannot be sent through Library Express and need to be picked up in person.

Tip: Most Public and Military Libraries offer the same Interlibrary Loan that UMass does and can request the same books as UMass can.