New Student Information

This guide is a must read for those who are new to law school or for those who are still confused about anything in the library, from the card security system to how to reserve a study room!

First-Year Law Student Resource Guide

This is the authoritative guide to our favorite things here in the library to help you survive being a 1L.  It covers resources about law school, case briefing, and outlining.

1L Information

We met many of the new students during the recent library 1L orientation, but if you were unable to attend, here is a summary of some of the most important things we covered:

Library Survival Guide
If you need information about law school in general, briefing a case, or outlining, consult our new student guide.

Library Tours
We will provide short tours of the law library during the first few weeks of school.  Check back on the law library website for more information and sign ups.

Study Aids
The library has a variety of study aids located in our reserve section including: Nutshells, Hornbooks, Examples and Explanations, Emanuel Law Outlines and Gilbert Law Summaries.  Search our catalog for specific titles on the library catalog or see our Finding Study Aids Guide.  Remember, study aids are just that: aids to your regular study.  They are not a substitute for attending class and reading required material!

Casebooks
The library maintains one copy of each required first year casebook on Reserve for two-hour check-out (no overnight checkouts).  The first year casebook collection is to be used for quick reference or limited photocopying and is not intended to be a substitute for purchasing casebooks.  The library does not purchase copies of required supplementary materials/handouts or upper division course materials.  Search our catalog for specific titles.

Study Rooms
Study rooms can be reserved for your study group.  It’s a two hour maximum per day per group.  For more information, visit: the law library site and click on the links under Study Rooms and Equipment Requests.

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Featured Database: CALI Lessons

As you are starting your new classes, we’d like to remind you about CALI lessons.  If you are unfamiliar, CALI lessons are interactive, computer-based tutorials on a wide range of legal subject areas.  Lessons are completely free for our law students. They are useful for mastering material during the semester and for exam preparation.

When registering a new CALI account, you must use our school’s authorization code to create the account. You can get the authorization code at the Reference Desk. You only need to use this authorization code once. After that, you will use the email and password you created when you signed up.  CDs with the lessons are also available at the Reference Desk.

Learning New Research Systems

studyingThe Library makes many different research platforms available to students–Blackboard, Casemaker, Lexis, Hein Online and Westlaw—to name just a few. Take advantage of your free access during law school and learn to use these platforms. On each system, look for tutorials, help screens and videos to help you get the most out of them.

Today in Legal History: Woman Lawyer’s Bill Passed in California

Through the efforts of Clara Shortridge Foltz and Laura deForce Gordon, the words “white male” were replaced with “person” in the state requirements to take the bar exam.  This had the effect of not only allowing women to take the bar, but minorities as well.  Ms. Foltz, the single parent of five children, went on that fall to become the first woman lawyer in California and won court battles to attend Hastings law school.  (At the time, it was not atypical to pass the bar prior to attending school).  Later in her career, Ms. Foltz drafted a bill that would create a public defender system, which was adopted by 30 states. The Woman Lawyer’s Bill was passed in California on March 28, 1878.

More information is available at:

ID Card Needed for Law School Building & Law Library Access

library swipePlease note that you need your university identification card to get into the law school and law library during specified times. More information about library hours and access is available here.

Law School Insight, Humor, and Inspiration

Sometimes you have to laugh … or wax theoretical … about the nature of legal education.  This research guide points you to commentary which is more useful than what you might find online, and it’s even in book form so you can read it on the bus.  Plus, you can see how different legal education used to be, and be extremely thankful it’s not like The Paper Chase anymore.

New and Notable: Excelling in Law School

0735599246Excelling in Law School: A Complete Approach  / Jason C. Miller
Call Number: KF272.M548 2013

Written by a recent law school graduate with an extraordinary success story, Excelling in Law School: A Complete Approach transcends merely surviving the experience, demonstrating how to earn high grades by working smart, excel in extracurricular activities, publish, and land top jobs. ..Miller relieves some of the anxiety about law school by conveying proven strategies that will appeal to today’s tech-savvy law student. He outlines the available resources and study-aids and shows how to effectively use new technologies such as websites that distribute outlines, companies that provide MP3s of detailed lectures on first year courses, student-maintained outline banks, recorded lectures, professor podcasts, and PowerPoint slides. Students learn the specific, unique skills required to approach law reviews and scholarships and to hunt for jobs. Excelling in Law School: A Complete Approach observes successful tactics used by other students and guides readers in selecting the strategies and resources that best fit each personality.

New and Notable: Finding Your Voice in Law School

Finding Your Voice in Law School: Mastering Classroom Cold Calls, Job Interviews, and Other Verbal Challenges / Molly Bishop Shadel
Call Number: KF283.S52 2013

From the Publisher:
Many college graduates aren’t prepared for the new challenges they will face in law school. Intense classroom discussion, mock trials and moot courts, learning the language of law, and impressing potential employers in a range of interview situations—it sounds intimidating, but it doesn’t have to be. Finding Your Voice in Law School offers a step-by-step guide to the most difficult tests you will confront as a law student, from making a speech in front of a room full of lawyers to arguing before a judge and jury. Author Molly Shadel, a former Justice Department attorney and Columbia law graduate who now teaches advocacy at the University of Virginia School of Law, also explains how to lay a strong foundation for your professional reputation.
Communicating effectively—with professors, at social gatherings, with supervisors and colleagues at summer jobs, and as a leader of a student organization—can have a lasting impact on your legal career. Building the skills (and attitude) you need to shine among a sea of qualified students has never been more important. Finding Your Voice in Law School shows what it takes to become the lawyer you want to be.