|Legal Research||Dictionaries/Encyclopedias||Education Law||Constitutions|
|Laws/Codes/Regs||Case Law||Articles||Citing Sources||Comments|
The purpose of this course research guide is to focus on some specific resources in the University Library and on the World Wide Web useful for legal research. Also, consult the Educational Leadership, Policy, and Law course research guide for additional resources. Should you have questions, stop by the Reference Desk on the first floor. You may also call the Reference Desk at (334) 229-4110 during the hours the Library is open.
Start with these sources to help you understand the various aspects of legal research.
Both federal and state governments pass laws to carry out the powers given them by their constitutions. These laws or statues are then codified (arranged by subject in the United States Code), and regulations are developed to administer them. Use the following sources to find the laws, codes, and regulations for the United States and individual states. For additional information on the federal legislative process, read How Our Laws Are Made and Enactment of a Law. You may also wish to explore the Cornell Law School's Legal Information Institute site.
Reporters provide the text of court decisions (case opinions), which form the basis of case law. Digests organize the headnotes (summaries) from court decisions by topics.
Education-Related Case Law
US Supreme Court Cases
US Circuit Courts of Appeal
US District Courts
State Case Law
Much of the scholarly legal literature is published in law reviews (journals). Searching the Library's online databases is the most efficient way to find articles in law reviews and other journals. For additional information on the databases listed below and for others, explore our list of databases. Our databases are now easily accessible off campus by clicking on the database name and typing in the information requested. If you need additional assistance with accessing the databases, contact Randy Curtis (334 229-6968) or Cedric Davis (334 229-6998).
Some of the databases provide access to the entire text of articles. If the text of an article is not available in a database, check for the law review or journal title in Serials Solutions (ASU) to determine if the article is available in another online database. Also check HORNetCat, our online catalog, for availability of journals in the Serials Department on the third floor. You may order those not available in the Library or via a full-text database through Interlibrary Loan.
Legal & Education Databases
You will use the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association to cite your sources. A copy of the Manual is available at the Reference Desk on the first floor of the Library. Additional assistance with citing electronic publications is available from the APA online site.
Please take a few minutes to let us know what you think about this guide. Has it helped with your research? Do you have any suggestions for improving the guide? You may e-mail Marsha V. Taylor(firstname.lastname@example.org) or call her at (334) 229-6839 with your comments and suggestions.
Course Research Guides | Information Literacy Program
University Library & Learning Resources Center | Alabama State University
Alabama State University