Otterbein is a member of two consortia, OPAL and OhioLINK. OPAL (Ohio Private Academic Libraries) is composed of 24 private colleges in Ohio who share one online catalog, also called OPAL. OhioLINK is composed of 2-year and 4-year public institutions of higher education in Ohio, the State Library of Ohio, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Westerville Public Library, as well as a growing number of private colleges and universities. Through OhioLINK, Otterbein has access to a central online catalog, research databases, electronic journals, and other electronic products. Both OPAL and OhioLINK allow Otterbein University faculty, students and staff to request materials owned by other members.


To search the Otterbein Catalog ONLY:

  1. Click on "Search Another OPAL Library" and select Otterbein.
  2. Choose the criteria for your search (keyword, author, title, etc.) and type in your search.
  3. If Otterbein University owns a copy of the item you are looking for, check the status. If it says AVAILABLE, you can visit the library, locate the item on the shelves, and check it out at the Circulation Desk*.
  4. If Otterbein does not own a copy of the item you are looking for, you may want to expand your search to other libraries. To do so, click on "search OhioLINK" from the top tool bar.

To order from OhioLINK:

  1. Click on REQUEST THIS ITEM*
  2. Input the information requested. OhioLINK asks for:
    • Institution Affiliated With: Otterbein University
    • Last name, First name
    • Barcode # (From your Cardinal Card, 7777…)
    • Pickup: Otterbein Circulation Desk

When materials arrive from either OPAL or OhioLINK libraries, we will e-mail you that they are ready to be picked-up. You can also check your online record to determine when your materials arrive. See next section on "View Your Record."

*If you have any overdue items or owe any money you will not be able to request items. Check with the circulation desk staff to clear up any problems at x1215. For more information about requesting items from other OPAL or OhioLINK libraries, call Rebecca Raeske-Grinch at x3072.


  1. From the library's home page you can click on "My Account".
  2. Input information requested.
  3. To see what items you have checked out:
    • Click on the # of items checked out.
    • You will be able to renew your own materials here.
  4. To see the status of your requests click on # of requests.
    • Available: the owning library has not processed the book yet
    • In Transit: the item is on the way to Otterbein
    • On Hold or Ready for Pick-up: the item is ready for pickup
    • OhioLINK received: the item is ready for pickup

For assistance, please ask at either the Reference desk at x1984 or the Circulation desk at x1215 (press 4 for circulation).


Interlibrary Loan (ILL) service is designed to serve the research needs of Otterbein University faculty, staff and students. To request an ILL use the request forms on our website:

Articles requested through ILL are sent to your Otterbein e-mail account. If you prefer a different e-mail address, please notify Once the article is sent, you will be notified by e-mail.

It can take as long as 10 days from the date of your request to receive materials, although normally it is faster. Occasionally there are items that we are not able to borrow. The length of time you may have the borrowed material and any restrictions on the use of this material are determined by the lending library. If you need more time, some libraries will extend (renew) your requests. Contact the Otterbein Interlibrary Loan Office (x1164) to request a renewal. Keep in mind that a renewal should be submitted before the due date indicated on the book wrapper. It is important that books are returned on time to remain in good standing with the lending institution. You will be fined .50/day for all overdue ILL materials. Books or videos obtained through ILL can NOT be placed on reserve.

The copyright law of the United States (TITLE 17, United States Code) governs the making of reproductions of copyrighted materials. Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction. One of these specific conditions is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be "used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship, or research." If a user makes a request for, or later uses, a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of "fair use," that user may be liable for copyright infringement. This institution reserves the right to refuse a copying order if, in its judgment, fulfillment of the order would involve violation of copyright law.

Usually there is no charge for the ILL service. Occasionally, however, the ILL department must use a supplier that charges a fee (usually between $10 and $25). The library will pay up to $12 for faculty requests. To cover the difference, you may either charge your department or pay the library by cash or check. You will be notified, prior to ordering, about any requests that are subject to the additional fee.

Questions? Call Allen Reichert in the Interlibrary Loan Office at x1164 or Rebecca Raeske-Grinch in Resource Sharing x3072.


The library allocates funds for each faculty member to purchase library books and non-print materials. We welcome your suggestions for strengthening our collection. You should use the New Item Request Service to request items.

If you need the new material by a certain date or course reserve, please include this information in the comment section. We will do our best to obtain the item within your time-frame. Rush orders will be processed in emergency situations, but discounts are lost and shipping costs are a factor. Check the "hold this item for me" box, if you would like to have the material as soon as it is cataloged.

Please send any orders for Serials (periodicals, journals, newspapers, electronic journals, and/or standing orders) to Lois Szudy, Library Director for approval. Due to the inflationary increases in the cost of such items, very few, if any, new subscriptions are currently being added.

Call Elizabeth Zeitz in Acquisitions, x1938 for more information.

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