Archive for the 'Law Library' Category

Oct 30 2014

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Staying Current with Twitter

Among the many ways to stay current with news and information, those available to BU Law students include: searching and receiving legal news updates from such premium sources as Bloomberg/BNA and Law 360; reading legal blogs, which you can access through a newsreader by subscribing to RSS feeds; and creating Alerts through Lexis, Westlaw and Google, among others.

Another current awareness tool–and a great one for up-to-the-minute topical information–is Twitter. A few of the ways you can use Twitter:

Like other tools, Twitter can contribute to a sense of overwhelm, being inundated with too much information. That’s a good reason for being selective, setting time limits and letting go of what is no longer helpful.

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Oct 27 2014

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Writing a Paper? Want to Impress your Professor? Make an Appointment with a Research Librarian.

Filed under Law Library

Are you Googling and finding articles at sites that ask you to pay?  Chances are the library has a subscription to that journal.  Do you know the best books on your topic?  We can help you write a better paper by pointing you to better resources.  We have a research guide that points you to all the sources you might need.  We also offer appointments with a research librarian which can be tailored to your paper topic.  Let us help you write the best paper you can.

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Oct 17 2014

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Chat with a Reference Librarian on LiveChat

Filed under Law Library

Did you know that as a law school student you can remotely chat with the reference librarians? LiveChat is available during normal reference hours, and it is fast and easy to use, even on your phone. To access it, just go to and start typing!



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Oct 17 2014

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Friday Fun Fact.

Filed under Law Library

Ever wondered WHY libraries, like new cars, have a smell all their own?

Click on the image below to discover the answer:


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Oct 15 2014

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Research on International Human Rights Law

Few topics get more attention around the world than human rights, but many students are uncertain about the source and scope of those rights.

If you are researching the topic, the library’s research guide is one starting place. As with most international law topics, consulting a good secondary source, such as a leading treatise or the Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law, is often a great way to identify primary documents and learn about enforcement mechanisms.

The most prominent arena for international human rights law is the United Nations apparatus, which includes:

A relatively new UN process is called Universal Periodic Review, which provides a regular assessment of every UN member state’s human rights record.

Other human rights systems include the regional systems in Europe, the Americas and Africa–each with its own conventions, commissions and tribunals.

Many sources provide ongoing coverage of human rights developments around the world, including non-governmental organizations (NGOs), such as Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch; blogs, such as Human Trafficking Search and  Immigration Prof Blog; news agencies of the UN and  U.S. State Department (and the Department’s Human Rights Reports); and international news sources, such as the BBC and Reuters.

Other research guides that may provide relevant guidance include our guides to Treaty Research, Refugee & Asylum Law and International Courts & Tribunals.


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Oct 14 2014

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Research Tools for Foreign Law.

Filed under Foreign Law,Law Library

Researching a foreign jurisdiction—-and no I don’t mean California—can be a daunting task. Issues of language, availability of materials and or course legal regime can pose seemingly insurmountable hurdles.  Luckily the Law Library has a robust suite of databases and research guides to get you started and provide direction.

Here are some useful resources to consider when approaching a research task for a foreign jurisdiction:

The Foreign Law Guide is a fantastic starting place of introduction. It offers “relevant information on sources of foreign law, including complete bibliographic citations to legislation, English translations and selected references to secondary sources.”

Each country has a home landing page that looks like this— note that in addition to the main title headings there is the ability to search laws by subject:

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vLex Global has collected legal documents (statutes and cases) from many government websites and added some secondary source materials to create a single database.  It allows searching across various countries and there is a customized Google translate overlay.

The Constitute Project  is a fantastic way to search foreign Constitutions for free and, uniquely, by topic.

We have three International Encyclopaedia of Laws: Constitutional Law, Cyber Law and Intellectual Property which provide comprehensive secondary source material and anaylsis in their respective focus areas.

Constitutions of Countries of the World by Oxford  provides access to current and historical constitutions for countries around the globe.

and our own Foreign Law Research Guide provides insight into the research process and the myriad of other sources available to you.

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Oct 08 2014

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Where to Go, What to Do in Boston

Filed under Fun!,Law Library

If you’re new to the area, you may not know all the great neighborhoods that are easily accessible from campus. BU Today recently ran a great piece on things to do in Coolidge Corner, just a short ride on the Green/C Line or a 15-20 minute walk from the law school. Take in a movie at the Coolidge Theater, shop, have a meal or explore the neighborhood on your own.

Previously, BU Today has highlighted Central Square, Harvard Square, Chinatown, Davis Square, Jamaica Plain and other neighborhoods. If you’re looking for something to do this weekend, these guides are a good place to start.

Other places to look:’s Events calendar; The Improper Bostonian (and see the extensive listings in the print edition, distributed throughout the area); The Boston Calendar; and the City of Boston’s City Calendar; to name a few.

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Oct 08 2014

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Creating Uniformity in State Law

Filed under Hein Online,Law Library


State law poses several questions at the outset – is this a common law issue or a statutory issue.  How does my state answer this question as opposed to other states?  Two organizations have worked to bring uniformity to the law across state lines both in common law and in statutes.  The American Law Institute is responsible for the Restatements which work with academics to create a clear statement of the rules articulated in common law for a number of areas, like torts, that are primarily embodied in case law.  A number of BUSL professors are reporters for the American Law Institute: Prof. Kull is the reporter for the Restatement of the Law Third, Restitution and Unjust Enrichment;  Prof. Harper is a reporter for the Restatement Third, Employment Law; and Dean O’Rourke is a reporter for the Principles of the Law of Software Contracts.  Other faculty including Prof. Frankel, Prof. Feld and Prof. Gordon have also advised the ALI on various topics.  The National Conference of Commissioners on Uniform State Laws, responsible for model laws, work to hammer out statutory language in areas where states would benefit from uniformity.  States can than choose to adopt these model laws.  HeinOnline has excellent libraries for both of these bodies.  If you were looking for the Restatement of Torts 2d, the Model Penal Code or the Uniform Penal Code, you will find it on HeinOnline.


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Oct 07 2014

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Bloomberg, Lexis, and Westlaw Training begins the week of October 13th. Reserve your space TODAY.

Fall training by our vendor representatives begins the week of October 13th. These trainings are strongly recommended for ALL 1L and AmLaw LLM students to pick up where your Library Research classes left off.

Our vendor reps will introduce some of the “bells and whistles” unique to their individual platforms and will assist you in developing that most essential of your lawyering skills: research proficiency.

The reps publicize their training dates on their respective sties and all upcoming training can be found and registered for at the following links:


Bloomberg Law:

Lexis Advance:



(Remember, many employers expect that you will have completed the vendors’ research certification trainings BEFORE day one on the job.)

UPDATE: Bloomberg Law Training will be held on these two dates:

Oct 16 1-145 pm – Room 414

Oct 28 1-145 pm   – Room 414

You may email our Bloomberg Rep., Eric Malinowski, at to register.



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Oct 06 2014

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Technology and the Law

Filed under Apps,CALI,Cloud,Law Library

Increasingly programs are being built that are designed to aid lawyers in answering routine client questions.  Services have arisen that say they will answer your legal questions online.  How does these developments play into traditional legal careers, and is there something out there for the law student technology wiz?  Here is a panel from a recent conference attended by some of the innovators in legal technology which discusses how technology could fundamentally change lawyers, law firms, and the practice of law itself.

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