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Book Retrieval means that you may place a request for an item that is not checked out, and it will be held for you at the UW-Madison campus library of your choice.

Expect delivery within 1-3 business days.

Materials with 14 day, 28 day, or semester loans are eligible for retrieval. You may have up to 50 active requests at one time.

For items currently checked out or renewed, see MadCat Help: Recall from Current Borrower.

To retrieve materials from the UW-Madison Shelving Facility, see Requesting from the UW-Madison Shelving Facility.

Send questions to Memorial Library Circulation.

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How to Place a Request

  1. Search for the item in MadCat.
  2. Display the single record. The item's status should be "Not Checked Out".
  3. Click on Place Requests, and if you haven't logged in, you will be prompted to do so. Enter your 11-digit ID number and last name, and click OK.
  4. Select RETRIEVE Madison Item at Madison Library from the dropdown menu. Click OK.
  5. For "Select an item", choose the copy you want retrieved.
  6. If applicable, specify an issue.
  7. Using the dropdown menu you MUST choose a library at which you wish to pick up the item.
  8. Type in your UW-Madison 11-digit ID number.
  9. Click on Submit Request. To clear all of the fields, click on Clear Form.

To see if the item is ready for you to pick up, check the Items Available section of My MadCat Account. You will also receive notification by email or mail.

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Who Is Eligible for this Service

All patrons who have a campus affiliation will be eligible:

  • Graduate and undergraduate students
  • Faculty and staff
  • Patrons who have been issued a Memorial Library borrowing card
    • Wisconsin residents who have obtained a deposit card
    • state, county and city employees
    • Wisconsin teachers
    • UW-Madison faculty spouses and children
    • domestic partners
    • library donors
    • corporate employees who have obtained a deposit card
    • UW-System faculty, staff and students
    • Beloit College students
    • Edgewood College students
    • Wisconsin Private College faculty

The following patrons are not eligible:

  • Patrons who have been issued a library card from Health Sciences, Law, State Historical, or Steenbock Libraries. These cards are not accepted at all campus libraries. Patrons with a library-specific card must apply for a Memorial Library borrowing card at the desk at the entrance to Memorial Library. Note: Appointments, such as honorary fellows and others not on the UW-Madison payroll, will also need to obtain a Memorial Library borrowing card.
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Why a Request May Fail

Failure During the Placement of a Request

A request may fail for the following reasons:

1. The item requested is not eligible for retrieval. Possible reasons:
  • Condition of the item
  • Reference materials
  • Reserve materials
  • Media such as DVDs or CDs
  • Material is in transit from one library to another (contact circulation staff at a campus library to have a "hold" placed for you).

2. Your patron record has been blocked. Some reasons for blocked records are:

  • An item you have checked out has been recalled by another patron and is overdue
  • Your ID has been blocked until the local address is updated

Failure After Successful Placement of a Request

After pacing a request and receiving the message "Your Request Was successful", you may be notified by library staff that your request cannot be filled. The reason will accompany the notice and will appear in your library record.

The following are reasons a request cannot be filled:

  • The item is checked out. You may recall the item from the current borrower.
  • The item is not eligible for retrieval.
  • The item cannot be located. Place an interlibrary loan request.
  • The item is on order or in process. Fill out the On Order / In Process Inquiry Form.
  • The item is on reserve for a course.
  • Other. Contact the owning library for more information.

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Checking Request Status

Access your patron record by clicking on My MadCat Account and logging in.

The following messages, under the section "Requests Pending", alert you to the status of your requests:

  • Accepted (MadCat acknowledges the receipt of your request)
  • Printed (Library staff acknowledges the receipt of your request)
  • Your request is number: 1 - Expires mm/dd/year (The item has been located and your request is being processed)
  • Canceled (This message will appear if you cancel your own request or if you have not picked up the item in the allotted time period)

When your item is available for pick up, the title will move from the "Requests Pending" section to the "Items Available" section of your record.

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Canceling a Request

Access your patron record by clicking on My MadCat Account and logging in.

In your record, "Requests Pending" and "Items Available" tables list the items currently being retrieved or items ready for pick up, respectively.

To cancel an item:

  1. Check the appropriate box in the column marked "Cancel".
  2. Click the "Cancel Requests" button.

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Video Help

A short video tutorial on Book Retrieval is available here. Flash Content

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