Using Brief MARC Records for Incoming ILL

Record Requirements

Items received through a 3rd party interlibrary loan can be circulated to patrons in Evergreen through the use of brief MARC records. This method enables a library to assign data entry associated with interlibrary loans to a particular staff member, as well as taking advantage of Evergreen’s automatic email and text message notifications.

Record Requirements

We recommend the following best practice for creating a fixed set of records to be used for interlibrary loans. Some sites may choose to enter bibliographic information for the particular item in these MARC fields, while others may prefer to use generic data, as the actual data is retained in their 3rd party interlibrary loan software.

  • Bibliographic records should include the following fields, and text should be in upper case to further identify the record as a brief ILL record:

    • 100 $a for author’s full name
    • 245 $a for title, and 245 $b containing ILL
    • 599 $aILL with a subfield $9 containing the Library Archives Canada code of the library who created the record.

These records can be created using the sitka_book_rda MARC template. This template is available by selecting Cataloguing → Create New Marc Record.

  • Volume records should use ILL for the call number. This call number does not need to be changed on a per-loan basis.

    • In multi-branch systems with centralized interlibrary loan the Owning library/call number should be the branch handling interlibrary loan.
  • Item records should use either be a real barcode affixed to a card that is used for checkout, or a barcode that can be easily written onto a card or wrapper that circulates with the item.

    • A shelving location called ILL or Interlibrary Loan should be created and assigned to items attached to these MARC records. This shelving location should be set up to be holdable, but not OPAC visible. This will prevent patrons from discovering these brief records in the OPAC. Multi-branch systems with centralized interlibrary loan should created a system level shelving location.
    • Library staff can create a library specific MARC template with all required attributes pre-loaded, thereby facilitating data entry and consistency when creating a fixed set of records.
  • If interlibrary loans should follow a circulation policy that is different from the library’s default circulation policy, library staff should ensure that a policy exists for their library, and contact Co-op Support if a policy needs to be created. Co-op Support recommends using the circulation modifiers "ill-no-renewal" and/or "interlibrary-loan".
  • Staff can keep track of which records are available for use by putting all of the items into an item bucket.


One issue with using actual bibliographic title and author data is that returned ILL items with outstanding fines will display on the patron record with the current title of the MARC record under which their interlibrary loan circulated. For example, if a barcode is re-used while a patron still has fines attached to that item, patron’s record will be updated and contain the new title information, not the information for the item they originally borrowed.

Support recommends ILL and circulation staff be aware of this and adopt procedures to manage fines on ILLs at time of check-in if using actual bibliographic data in brief MARC records. This could include adjusting the bill balance to zero for the circulation fine and creating a manual bill with all relevant details in a note, or collecting payment at time of check-in when possible.

Sites using generic data will not have to manage this as fines on patron account would reflect the title as Interlibrary Loan Book, for example.

Copyright © 2008-2018, BC Libraries Cooperative