Preemption Check

This guide shows you how to do preemption checks on your potential law review articles, or major scholarly writings which you might be doing for an independent study. A preemption check is much more than just Shepardizing, and this guide tells you how to do it yourself and do it right the first time.

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Writing a Paper this Semester?

Here are some common questions and answers:

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Noise Level

Throughout the academic year and as we get closer to finals, students seek quiet areas to study, free of ringing phones and personal conversations. Keep in mind that voices carry in study rooms (even when doors are closed) so please be considerate. The 4th floor is a designated quiet study zone.

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Library Access Policy

While law students, faculty and staff are Seattle University Law Library’s main constituents, please note that the Law Library is open to all Seattle University faculty, staff, students, and alumni who are engaged in research or studies that require the use of legal material.  Circulation privileges are limited to Seattle University faculty, staff, currently enrolled students, or alumni who purchase library memberships.

Members of the general public can purchase a $5 day pass for access to the Library with no circulation privileges.  Additionally, members of the general public have full access to the United States government documents acquired by the Library through its membership in the Federal Depository Library Program.  All non-law school patrons must show identification at the Circulation Desk and complete the “Visitors’ Registration Form.”

During reading and examination periods, access to the Law Library is limited to law students, alumni, faculty, and researchers with specific collection needs.  The Seattle University Law Library access policy is posted on our website at:

If you have questions about access or unauthorized patrons, please contact the Law Library Circulation staff on the 2nd floor of the library.  Campus public safety can also be contacted: x5990 (non-emergency) or x5911 (emergency).

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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 at

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.  For specific titles see our Finding Study Aids Guide at:

The library maintains one copy of each required first year casebook in the Reserve area 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.  

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: and click on the links under Study Rooms and Equipment Requests.

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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.

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Library Study Aids

The law library purchases the following study aid series:

Current study aids are located in the Reserve collection. Study aids are available for 2-hour check out and selected “starred” copies can be checked out overnight. Overnight books are available at 3 p.m. and are due the following day at 11 a.m. for day students and 6 p.m. for evening students. On Thursdays at 3 p.m. the overnight status converts to weekend so the study aid will not be due until Monday. Please note that there is no weekend checkout during the exam period – overnight checkout only. Overnight books cannot be renewed. Fines will accrue for late items at the rate of 25 cents per hour for the first four hours and $1 for every hour thereafter. Selected copies of older editions of study aids are located in the Treatise collection for checkout.

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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.

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New and Notable: Think Like a Lawyer


Edwin Scott Fruehwald, Think Like a Lawyer: Legal Reasoning for Law Students and Business Professionals (ABA 2013) New Books Collection KF379.F78 2013

“This book focuses on fundamental skills necessary for legal problem solving, such as rule-based reasoning (deductive reasoning), synthesis (inductive reasoning), analogical reasoning, distinguishing cases, and policy-based reasoning. The useful exercises that appear throughout the text enable you to practice the skills you are gaining as you progress through the chapters.”
– Scott Fruehwald

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Reprographics Guide for Law Students

Need to scan documents or photocopy handouts?

The Law Library does not have an in-house copy center, so for students looking to photocopy, scan, or fax documents we’ve created a guide to help you locate these services on campus. The guide documents where you can find these resources as well as the contact information and any fees charged. We’ve also included the information for the nearest off-campus copy center in case you can’t make it to one of the on-campus providers.

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