ArticleRequest & Document Delivery Service

For publications not held by Stirling University Libraries you can use the ArticleRequest and Document Delivery services.  You can use our Library Catalogue to check if we already have a publication.

1. Request a Journal Article

2. Request a Book or Other Publication Type

About the ArticleRequest Service

ArticleRequest is a free service for staff and students at all campuses to obtain journal articles that are not held electronically by Stirling University Libraries. Requests are sent to an international consortium of libraries that shares articles. If available, the article link is emailed directly to you.

Make a request directly in ArticleRequest

First check in Stirling's Library Catalogue that the journal article you need is not available electronically from our Library.  If not available:

  • Then submit a request to ArticleRequest.
  • Choose 'University of Stirling', then enter your name and the number above the barcode on your Staff/Student ID card.


  • Fill in as many details about the article as you know (this will speed up the processing)
  • If the article is available you will receive an email with a link directly to the article PDF file.
  • The link only remains active for 30 days so save your article PDF file straight away.

Alternatively, you can use ArticleRequest with WebBridge: when using the Check WebBridge button in Library databases - if no electronic version of the article is found at our Library, then the ArticleRequest link will appear in the WebBridge window. Click on the 'Request article' link under the ArticleRequest heading.

Your requests:

  • You can also request articles that the Library only holds in print format or at another campus.
  • Most requests are successful and arrive within 24 hours (90%).
  • If the article you requested is not available then the Library will automatically forward the request to our Document Delivery Service.

If you wish, before you make a request, you can check if the item will be available by searching the ArticleReach Catalogue. If it is available then choose 'Request Article' in the ArticleReach catalogue. If it is not available you can make your request directly to our Document Delivery Service (see below).

About the Document Delivery Service

The Document Delivery network allows Stirling University to borrow items from other libraries in the UK and abroad which are not available in Stirling University Libraries.

The DDS service is for all staff and students at all campuses.


What does the service cover?

You may request books, reports, theses or articles from journals via the Document Delivery Service. 

Is there a charge?

Stirling University library does not charge readers for the use of the document delivery service. However there is a cost to the library for each request (currently between £5 and £30) so you should only ask for essential items.


On the DDS system, Clio, click 'create a new account' then enter your library barcode in the box and click 'check for existing account'.  If you have already set yourself up on the system, you will be given the opportunity to reset your password.  If no existing account is found, you will be taken to the 'Create a new CLIO web account' page where you can fill in your details and set a password.

How do I make a request?

When placing a request:

  • please first ensure that the item is definitely not in the library by checking the library catalogue
  • if you are requesting a journal article - use the ArticleRequest Service (unless you have already checked the ArticleReach Catalogue and know if won't be available via ArticleRequest)
  • allow plenty of time for us to obtain items
  • due to the cost to the library please restrict your requests to a reasonable number
  • it is also useful, whenever possible, to read any abstracts which may be available and (for students) to discuss possible requests with their supervisor in order to gauge the relevance of the original document

If you need assistance locating abstracts, please ask at the Information Centre on level 2 of the library.

For each item that you require, please complete a request form.

Once the web form is submitted an email is automatically sent to the Document Delivery Service and your request will be processed.

How long does it take?

We cannot guarantee to obtain any item within a specified period. For example articles from mainstream periodicals often arrive within a few days, while some books may take several weeks, and there is usually a delay of several months in obtaining items from abroad. An increasing number of journal articles can be emailed directly to you via Secure Electronic Delivery this can take only a few hours.

How do I check the status of my requests?

You can login to the DDS system to check the status of any requests you have made. Go to the section 'View your requests'.

What happens next?

Many articles are emailed to you as a PDF.  Books can be picked up from the DDS desk at the Information Centre.

Occasionally items are lent to us on the condition that they are read only in the library. Under no circumstances can we break this rule and therefore you will need to view the document in the library on these occasions. We regret that we are unable to forward any loan item, or to mail to an external address. If you are not in regular attendance at the University, you should use the inter-library loan facilities at your local library. If there is a problem in obtaining the item you require (eg an incomplete reference), then we will contact you as soon as possible in order to keep you informed of progress and to obtain any additional information.

Secure electronic delivery (SED)

The British Library can now deliver articles from its huge collection of journals directly to your PC by email. You will be sent an email from the British Library with a PDF of your article. Clicking on the link within the email will download and open the PDF. The link works best if you are using Microsoft Outlook as your email client.

Important notes about SEDs:

  • The electronic copy will be available to download from the British Library server for 14 days, after which the file will be deleted. If, for any reason, you cannot access your document in time, please contact DDS advice.
  • You are permitted to make only one paper copy from the electronic copy. We recommend you print your document on first viewing.
  • You will not be able to store your document on your PC.

Setting up SED

To access your SED, you will need to have Adobe Reader installed, together with the FileOpen plugin.

  • If you are a member of staff FileOpen can be downloaded from Run Advertised Programs on your PC go to control panel> run advertised programs> Adobe FileOpen Install. 
  • All computing lab PCs have Adobe Reader and the FileOpen plugin installed.
  • If you are using your own computer you can install FileOpen and Adobe Reader from the web:

We recommend that you use Internet Explorer and Microsoft Outlook if possible - problems have been reported with different web browsers and email clients.

Renewal and return of DDS items

The loan period for a book is now five weeks. When you are finished with your book, please return it to the DDS desk at the Information Centre. 


Please return all items which you receive on loan promptly. This is particularly important because we rely on the goodwill of other libraries to lend us material. It may be possible to renew items. Please contact staff at the Document Delivery desk immediately if you foresee any problems in returning any item on time. If you do not return an item on loan in good time then there is a danger that you could be charged. The British Lending library (from which we obtain most of our loans) imposes a minimum charge of £108 plus VAT for non-returned or excessively overdue items. It is our practice to pass this charge on to the borrower and once a charge has been levied no refund is possible. If you have any queries about the service, please ask the staff at the Document Delivery desk.


We would ask users requiring a renewal to give DDS a week's notice.  Due to new procedures at the British Library we will only be allowing one renewal per DDS book due to the British Library now charging £4.20 for each renewal. In addition if the book is not returned on time we will automatically be charged even if it is still in transit.


Please contact the Document Delivery Service, or by phone on 01786 467239. 

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