Presentations & Course Materials


  • Advanced Legal Research Theatre

    Elizabeth Caulfield, MLIS, JD
    Head of Reference and Instruction Librarian
    Texas Tech University School of Law Library
    1802 Hartford Avenue, Box 40004
    Lubbock, TX 79409-0004
    806.742.3990 x 311

    I created Advanced Legal Research Theatre to get students actively involved in learning the fundamentals of case law research, including characteristics of West’s National Reporter System and digests. I used the exercise, which consists of six fill-in-the-blank scripts, in an advanced legal research class of twelve students. Before the class, students were responsible for reading chapters six and seven of Legal Research Illustrated by Steven M. Barkan, Roy M. Mersky, and Donald J. Dunn (9th ed. 2009). At the beginning of the class, I used the first three Power Point slides to introduce the concept of performing scenes to the students. Then, I divided the students into six pairs. Each pair was responsible for filling in the blanks of one script, using the pages listed on their script from Legal Research Illustrated. (I have not included the handouts by West referred to in scripts 5 and 6. The handout referred to in Script 6 appears no longer to be available.) After giving students time to find the answers in those pages and fill in the blanks, they ‘acted out’ their scenes for the class (read their scripts). I went through the relevant Power Point slides after each pair acted out a scene to reinforce or correct what the students had said in the scene. The slide(s) to discuss after each scene are indicated on the bottom of each script. I have removed the pictures that are in my original version of the slides due to copyright concerns. In their place are descriptions of each picture.

  • Advanced Tax Law Research

    James Kelly
    Access Services Research Librarian/Lecturer-in-Law
    Alyne Queener Massey Law Library
    Vanderbilt University
    Nashville, TN 37203
    (615) 343-0208 

    This syllabus was used for a one-credit-hour pass/fail Advanced Tax Law Research.  The final assignment, which is included, is a brief client letter regarding a tax issue and a research log documenting the student’s process.

  • Banking Law Research Class

    Stefanie B. Weigmann
    Boston University School of Law
    Pappas Law Library
    765 Commonwealth Ave.
    Boston, MA 02215

    This was a one-credit, five session class on Banking and Finance Law Research.  Each class was 2 hours and 20 minutes.  The class covered statutes and legislative history in the first class, regulations in the second class, regulatory bodies and their publications (aside from regulations) in the third class, other state, international and NGO banking actors in the fourth class and financial information in the fifth class.  The model was to demonstrate resources, have the students complete a similar in class exercise and then a similar homework exercise.  The classes could be used as one unit or the various individual sessions could be used separately.

  • Cost Effective Research

    Sue Altmeyer, J.D., M.L.S.
    Digital Content Librarian
    Cleveland Marshall College of Law
    2121 Euclid Avenue, LL 116
    Cleveland, Ohio  44115-2214

    This lecture was prepared for an advanced legal research class.  I modify it to present to first year classes that want a lecture about cost effective use of Lexis and Westlaw and/or alternative databases and free web sources.  For the advanced legal research class, I have a couple of follow up assignments (I did not submit them to the Teach-in kit), one where the students critique a search and point out ways to save money.  Another assignment is to do various searches using the free web and alternative databases such as Casemaker, CCH, etc.

  • Health Law Class

    David Bachman
    Senior Legal Information Librarian
    Boston University Pappas Law Library
    765 Commonwealth Avenue
    Boston, MA  02215

    The class consisted of 5 class sessions, each 2-1/2 hours in length. The site has a separate tab for each class session, including an assignment and detailed outline, and subsidiary pages with links, instructive and descriptive content, and in-class exercises for students to submit answers. The class was tailored to topics and materials relevant in the weeks it was taught, but materials could be adapted and different examples used to illustrate the covered materials, including: federal legislation and regulations, case law, legislative history, state law materials, international health organization sites, secondary sources, research platforms such as BNA and CCH, and current awareness tools. I think most of the content is fairly self-explanatory. The most complete description of the material covered in each class is set out in the detailed outline for each session. There was no final examination, but the last class had an in-class exercise designed to require students to use many of the resources covered during the 5 class sessions.

  • Legal Bibliography Class

    Austin Martin Williams
    Reference/Student Services Librarian
    Georgia State University College of Law Library
    P.O. Box 4008
    Atlanta, GA 30302-4008

    The materials provided include examples of documents I used when teaching Legal Bibliography at Georgia State University College of Law: a syllabus, quizzes, and assignments. These documents will provide instructors with a framework for creating their own course materials. The quizzes may also be beneficial for generating class discussion questions or using as clicker/polling questions.

  • Legislative and Administrative

    Sue Altmeyer, J.D., M.L.S.
    Digital Content Librarian
    Cleveland Marshall College of Law
    2121 Euclid Avenue, LL 116
    Cleveland, Ohio  44115-2214

    The lecture and exercises were prepared for an Administrative Law Class.   Statutes are covered because the students needed to know about enabling statutes, and statutes requiring changes in regulation.  I covered legislative history (very briefly), and how the annotated U.S. Code often has citing references to regulations.  I also covered the usual CFR, Federal Register, agency decisions, & agency guidance.  I used both Internet sources (although I was unaware of when I made the presentation last semester), WestlawNext and classic Lexis (Lexis Advance did not have a lot of the legislative history stuff, and still doesn’t as I write this). The students really enjoyed doing the exercises and found them useful.

  • Researching Administrative Law

    Steven Ellis, Esq.
    Legal Information and Digital Services Librarian
    Pappas law Library
    Boston University School of Law

    Courtney Shelby, JD, MLIS
    Associate Dean for Inforrmation Services
    Director of the Law Library and Associate Professor of Law
    Maurice A. Dean School of Law at Hofstra University Law Library

  • Researching Immigration Administrative Law

    Karen Breda
    Legal Information Librarian & Lecturer
    Boston College Law School
    885 Centre Street
    Newton, MA 02459

    I created the Researching Immigration Law PowerPoint as a resource for Boston College Law School students participating in the Immigration Law Moot Court Competition.  The PowerPoint provides the following:  i) an overview of agency decisions; ii) an overview of administrative and judicial review of agency decisions, with a focus on proceedings before the Board of Immigration Appeals; iii) a list of 23 federal government agencies and offices involved in regulating immigration in the United States, with website links; and, iv) a pathfinder of print and electronic resources for finding the decisions of those agencies.  The lecture can be used to guide students (and lawyers new to immigration law) through the complex federal immigration system.  It is particularly useful for those who haven’t taken administrative law who might otherwise find the layers and variations of the Chevron Doctrine confusing.

  • Specialized Legal Research – Statutory and Regulatory Law

    Creighton J. Miller, Jr.
    Barbara Ginzburg
    Washburn University
    School of Law Library
    1700 SW College Ave.
    Topeka, KS 66621

    During the Summer 2012 semester, we team-taught LW949—Specialized Legal Research: Statutory and Regulatory Law, a one-credit, upper-level elective meant to address legislative and administrative research topics that often receive little coverage in first-year research and writing courses. To meet the time limitations of a one-credit class and a compressed summer schedule, we focused narrowly on the federal administrative rule-making process and on the enabling statutes that give rule-making authority to federal agencies. As a final class project, each student prepared a “research dossier” compiling the primary sources and interpretive materials connected with a federal regulation of the student’s own choice.

    As our contribution to this teach-in kit, we are providing some of the materials that we prepared for use in the class. We hope these will prove useful as a starting point for future instructors, both those teaching similar courses and those covering administrative, statutory, or legislative history research in other contexts.

    Materials Included:

    1) Course Syllabus
    2) Quiz 1 — A pre-test given prior to introducing administrative law research; designed to remind students of information from their first-year research and writing class and to alert them to various administrative research concepts.
    3) Class Project — The assigning document for the research dossier that served as the final project for the class.
    4) Research Strategies & Tactics Presentation — An introductory PowerPoint on themes that inform the practice of legal research: research as a process, making use of value-added tools (indexing, cross-references, citations, etc.), and time/cost efficiencies.
    5) Administrative Law Presentation — A brief, non-technical overview of administrative law; focused primarily on the process of informal rule-making.
    6) U.S. Administrative Law & Presidential Documents Checklist — A fairly comprehensive listing of federal administrative research sources with information on and how/where each can be found and accessed; intended as a general reference that students can consult as needed.
    7) Code of Federal Regulations Presentation — A presentation introducing the structure and basic use of the CFR.
    8) Statutes Presentation — A PowerPoint designed to accompany an introductory lecture on the process of statutory publication.
    9) Statutes Checklist/Handout — A list of critical federal statutory sources in various formats and the locations where they can be found; also provides introductory material on interpreting statute citations.
    10) Example Statutes Presentation — A series of imaginary federal statutes that demonstrate how statutes  evolve through the process of publication and subsequent amendment; includes session law and codified versions of: a Public Law on an Original Topic, a Public Law Amending Earlier Public Law, a Public Law Amending an Existing Code Section, a Public Law Enacting a Code Title as Positive Law, a Public Law Directly Amending a Positive Law Code Title, and a Freestanding Public Law Affecting a Positive Law Code Title.
    11) Federal Legislative History Checklist — A fairly comprehensive listing of federal legislative history research sources with information on and how/where each can be found and accessed; intended as a general reference that students can consult as needed.
    12) Methods for Compiling Legislative History Materials — A moderately successful attempt to explain the purpose of various legislative history tools; highlights the distinction between collections of specific legislative history documents (e.g., bills, hearings, reports), indexing tools, and sources for comprehensive legislative histories.