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  • This Subject Area Index lists all CALI lessons covering Legal Research.
  • The Legal Research and Writing Outline allows you to search for terms of art that correspond to topics you are studying to find suggestions for related CALI Lessons.

Legal Research

Legal Encyclopedias

This lesson is about Legal Encyclopedias. As one of the main types of secondary resources for legal research, Legal Encyclopedias can be useful for a variety of basic legal research tasks. This lesson will give you an overview of legal encyclopedias, explain how they are used in legal research, and run through a couple of hypotheticals using legal encyclopedias. The lesson focuses on the two legal encyclopedias covering American Law in general, Corpus Juris Secundum (CJS) and American Jurisprudence 2d (AmJur 2d) and gives some examples of state legal encyclopedias.

Legal Research 101: The Tools of the Trade

This lesson is intended as an introduction to the basic resources for researching the law and does not cover research methods using either print or online sources. References to print or computer-based resources are added for illustration and not comprehensiveness. Using a lawyer-under-construction theme, we take the student on as an apprentice and introduce him or her to the basic tools of legal research. Legal Research 101: The Tools of the Trade is primarily intended for first year law students. It is most appropriate for law students during their first semester and would also be useful in paralegal studies. The lesson presumes no prior knowledge of how to do legal research. It is, therefore, not intended for the advanced legal researcher, except perhaps as a refresher.

The Legal Research Game: Fee or Free Edition

Choosing the most appropriate sources to fill your research need is a crucial part of your research strategy. Knowing when it is more appropriate to use print legal research sources and when it is more appropriate to use free or fee-based electronic legal research sources is important for efficient and cost effective research. This exercise will focus on the decisions you may need to make when choosing between print, free web, and fee-based electronic databases.

Legal Research Methodology

This exercise is designed to help law students develop their abilities to handle legal research assignments. Students who have some experience doing legal research or who have completed their first year legal research course will benefit the most. However, these lessons may be used to supplement the learning process for students studying legal research for the first time.