Proxy Authorization - Borrowing

University of Illinois faculty members, graduate students, and other library borrowers with extenuating circumstances may authorize another library borrower to check out library materials for them.

This authorization is usually extended to students who are assisting a faculty member or a graduate student with their research. A spouse, staff member, etc. can also be designated as a proxy patron. If you have any questions about proxy authorization, please contact the Circulation Desk.

How to Apply

To obtain authorization, both parties must complete and sign a Proxy Request Form. The form may be filled in online but must be printed and signed by both parties and include both of their library account numbers. Completed forms may be turned in at the Circulation Desk on the second floor of the Main Library.

Authorization lasts for up to one year. Borrowers are responsible for all library materials charged to their accounts.

Instructions for Proxy Patrons

Check Out

Once you are authorized, you can check out library materials for another individual. Present your i-card or courtesy card at the desk and tell the staff member that you are checking out materials for another library borrower.

Library materials checked out by proxy will appear on the library account of the library borrower who authorized the proxy.  These items will receive the loan period for which the authorizing library borrower is eligible.

  • For example: if a graduate student who is a proxy for a faculty member checks out material for the faculty member, those items will appear on the faculty member’s account, and will have the loan period for which the faculty member is eligible.


To renew items checked out by a faculty member, contact the Circulation Desk. Inform them of your proxy status and give the name of the professor you are assisting. They can then renew the items. Items cannot be renewed online.

Request Books

You can’t use your proxy authorization to request books through the Online Catalog or the I-Share Catalog. However, if the borrower uses their own account to request items through the library catalog, you can pick those items up at any library location for them.

When requesting I-Share items please keep in mind that I-Share items can only be checked out to the account from which the request was placed.

Request Articles

Generally, you will not be able to request articles online from the library collection. The exception will be the Library’s DocExpress service, available through the Interlibrary Loan Office. DocExpress allows you to request PDF photocopies of articles the library owns in print. There is no charge for faculty, graduate students, or staff, but undergraduate students pay $5.00 per citation.

Interlibrary Loan

Proxy students cannot currently place Interlibrary Loan (ILL) requests for professors. Professors will have to place ILL requests themselves, but their proxy is authorized to pick up their ILL items.

Placing Materials on Reserve

You can place materials on reserve by filling out a Physical Reserve Request Form, available on the Reserves Guide for Instructors. On the form, fill in the professor’s name and course number(s), but if you are to be the contact person for these reserves you can use your own telephone number and email address. If you do this, indicate you did so in the “Notes” section of the form with your name and position with the professor. See the Reserves Guide for more information.