133armenia

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FCIL Newsletter
vol. 13, no. 3: May 1999


Report from Armenia
Mirela Roznovschi
NYU Law Library

In March and April of this year, I spent 10 days in Yerevan, Armenia, as part of the Rule of Law project funded by the USAID. The project is between Armenia State University Law School and New York University Law Library. During my assignment there I trained faculty and students on online legal research and on building the School of Law Home Page. My curriculum covered HTML editing, designing Home Pages, creating a virtual electronic library, legal research using Westlaw and Lexis, specialized legal research in the field of Public International Law, Private International Law, Foreign and Comparative Law on the Internet legal databases. I also provided training on the U.S. legal system and U.S. government legal databases.
 

My time was spent on teaching (5-7 hours per day) and preparing my lectures according with the reality I met at the Yerevan Law School. Despite Internet problems or LAN problems, some language obstacles (at the beginning, not all my students were able to understand English

even though they were able to read English very well) or some software complications - the program covered all proposed objectives. In my teaching I emphasized individual research and independent work while tests checked the level of acquired knowledge every day.
 

During my training program I covered:

-HTML basics, search engines, database evaluation and acquisition of electronic resources

-FrontPage98

-Westlaw, Lexis from description to legal research (especially international and foreign legal materials, primary and secondary
sources).

-European Union, Council of Europe databases, CELEX, GLIN, United Nations ODS and Web, WTO, CIESG, CIESIN, ACE, UN Treaty  Collection.

-Specialized legal research in the field of Human Rights, International Organizations, International Courts, International Criminal
Law, International Treaties.

-Foreign Legal databases (Russia, France, USA, etc).

-Secondary sources (law reviews, legal journals, scholarly publications available online)

-Principles for electronic collection development and maintaining the virtual library

-The School of Law Home Page in three languages (Armenian, English, Russian).
 

Comments:

I am very fortunate to have had such hard working students able to follow the entire program at the pace I imposed and the load I proposed in my Syllabus. They stayed for hours in the class room without a break, eager to learn more, to understand more. Every student or professor in my class of fourteen had a personal project so I had to supervise their work individually. It was exhausting to be jumping from one computer to another but exhilarating to see how the group was progressing day by day.

My hosts were wonderful and caring and they made my visit not only very nice but also very fruitful. I would like to mention here Karen Kevorgyan, the School of Law Vice Dean, and Sergey Arakelyan, the Law Library's director. I also would like to thank all my students whose feedback and final evaluation of the program showed that my efforts were useful and meaningful to them.


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