The Library has a guide full of helpful tips for your first year including, where to find back-up copies of course textbooks, how to print outlines, how to prepare for exams, and how to reserve a group study room. We also suggest this guide which lists books that can help with your classes and exams this year.
The Law School also has a page to help incoming students that details ways to become an active member of the law school and university community, helpful resources that are available on campus, and related administrative matters.
Did you ever wish there was an easier way to read those assigned cases for your classes? Then take a look at AudioCaseFiles. The Thurgood Marshall Law Library has recently acquired a subscription to LexisNexis CourtroomCast. One component of this database is AudioCaseFiles. It offers access to edited versions of the most commonly assigned cases for 1L and 2L classes. These downloadable files are available on any mobile device. When you access an opinion, you will also get the full text of the edited opinion, a brief fact summary and the rule of law. There is also a link to the Justia version of the full opinion. All opinions can also be printed.
You must register with the CourtCast system in order to access files. Go to the database homepage: http://courtroomcast.lexisnexis.com/ and click the AudioCaseFiles link at the top of the screen.
CourtroomCast will now display a sign in prompt. New users should select the "sign up" button to create their own account. From the registration screen, select the University of Maryland School of Law from the list, provide your umaryland.edu email address, create your own password and give your role (1L).
A confirmation email will then be sent to you. You must use the link in this email to confirm your registration.
Once registration is complete, click the AudioCaseFiles link at the top left of the screen.
You can now search by subject or course book title. For a more sophisticated search use the search box at the top right of the screen. If you search the title of the coursebook assigned for your class, be aware that the latest edition might not be on the list due to contractual constraints but the majority of cases for a particular title will be posted. Cases are arranged alphabetically.
Access to AudioCaseFiles is a great opportunity to learn anywhere, at any time by using the web. If you have any questions, please contact any of the Research Librarians.
We apologize in advance for the noise caused by the window construction taking place on the Paca side of the library. The drilling will only occur between 6:00 a.m. and 11:00 a.m. during the week. The construction is estimated to take two weeks. Free disposable earplugs are available at the front desk.
This is a good time to remind everyone that, even when its construction season, the open areas of the library have been designated as quiet zones for studying and research. Please conduct all conversations in the lounges. Study rooms are available. Two study rooms on the third floor of the library (Rooms 3321 and 3322) may be used on a first-come-first-served basis. Other third floor study rooms (3320, 3323, 3324 and 3325), which can be reserved by law students via the Room Reservation System.
Cell phone use and skype calls are limited to designated cell phone areas in the law library. The designated areas are the Lounges on the 3rd and 4th floors, all Group Study rooms, and the Fayette Street stairwell. A cell phone booth is also located just outside the law library entrance. If you receive a call, please go to one of the designated areas.
We strive to make the law library a quiet and comfortable place for reading, writing, and contemplation. Please let the librarians at the front desk know if someone is being disruptive.
Conducting research for a summer project is sometimes a real learning process. It often involves topics and resources that are interdisciplinary rather than legal. How and where do you start? The Thurgood Marshall Law Library has a number of resources to make your work easier.
Start your research from the library homepage and look at secondary sources. Books and articles offer explanations and commentaries on a variety of topics that will introduce you to your subject. They also contain additional references to similar information that will help you to get an overall picture of your topic.
Finding Secondary Sources with Discovery Service
This research tool is located at the top of the screen of the library's homepage and offers one-stop shopping. Be sure to look at the screen and make selections for the scope of your search: full text, University of Maryland System or UM Carey Law. Then use the narrowest terms possible for your search strategy. Results will show books, electronic resources and articles. You can further narrow your search by choosing filters at the left of the screen. If you have trouble accessing an item, contact a librarian at the CHAT link.
Google and Google Scholar
Both Google and Google Scholar are excellent resources to use for interdisciplinary searches. For more effective searching, go to the Google Search Help Center. When searching on Google or Google Scholar, remember to access from the library web page. Also, be certain that your settings allow you to access the full text of articles. To check your settings, go to Google Scholar and choose settings from the line of links at the top of the screen. Then select Library Links from the left side of the screen.
The Thurgood Marshall Law Library subscribes to a large number of databases that are not law-related. Academic Search Premier, Business Source Premier, CIAO, JStor, National Journal, Proquest Congressional, PubMed, Web of Knowledge and a variety of Bloomberg BNA Databases are just a few. If you don’t know the precise name of a database, you can either search by subject from the law library web page or you can use the black ribbon at the top of the screen (e-journals and databases) to access a search box where you can change the default "starts with" selection to "contains" and type in pertinent words.
Many non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have excellent web pages that contain a wealth of information. The Brookings Institution, Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD), the Kaiser Family Foundation, the World Bank, and the United Nations are prime examples. Many of these sites have links to reports and statistical data.
Most governments and government agencies also have web pages. The Maryland Archives page contains a tremendous amount of information on the history and current status of the state – all in PDF format. The web page of the European Union – EUROPA – is another outstanding resource. And country specific web pages such as those of China, France and Germany can be excellent sources of information.
Newspapers around the world offer access to their publications. But access varies and many newspapers allow limited or "current edition only" to non-subscribers. The law library subscribes to databases such as the Baltimore Sun, Washington Post and the New York Times. These titles can be found on the library web page. News resources are also available on Bloomberg Law, Lexis and Westlaw.
Looking for a summer work study position? The Law Library still has openings, which you can view here. Federal Work Study Employment, through Federal government funding, provides eligible students with the opportunity to work on or off campus and earn funds as an alternative to loan debt. Students must complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to qualify. Students can obtain positions both on and off campus for work study and non-work study employment.
Researchers often wish to locate multi-jurisdictional surveys of enacted state laws on a specific topic. There are several resources available to help you do this, including licensed databases such as WestlawNext (WLN), Lexis Advance, Bloomberg Law, and HeinOnline, as well as a number of free Web sites. Using these surveys will still require the researcher to do some independent research and updating, but they can give the project a jump start. (This post will mainly address surveys of enacted laws as opposed to sources for tracking pending legislation/bills.)
On WLN, type the words “50 State Surveys” into the default search box and you will be presented with links to a list of topics for which surveys are available. These can be browsed, or you can choose to search all the surveys available by keyword. Also available is a list of 50 State Regulatory Surveys.
Lexis Advance has “50 State Surveys, Legislation & Regulations” that can be browsed by Table of Contents. Retrieve the list by typing in the default search box as shown for WestlawNext above. The available surveys consist of tables with links to state and administrative code sections.
TMLL users now have access to HeinOnline’s “Subject Compilations of State Laws” database, which covers 1960-2013. To access it, select Hein from the TMLL database list and then select the Subject Compilations from the list of Hein databases.
From the landing page, you can search the various fields including keywords, titles, cases, courts, etc., or you can browse the surveys by subject as shown below.
Also, some entries in Hein’s Subject Compilations of State Laws include citations to law review articles, many of which are available full-text in Hein and are linked directly from search results. This Hein database also provides useful links to some external sources of state law surveys.
Other licensed TMLL databases also include topical surveys of state laws. For example, the Bloomberg/BNA Health Law Resource Center includes State Law Topical Surveys on a number of health related topics.
Among the free sites available to find surveys is that of the National Conference of State Legislatures. The NCSL provides reports as well as legislation and bill tracking on many current issues.
Many other nongovernmental organization Web sites compile state laws and legislation on specified topics; for example, the Guttmacher Institute's State Policies in Brief provide information on sexual and reproductive health and rights, reflecting recent legislative, administrative, and judicial actions. These subject compilations can be located by Googling the topic or issue. Naturally these compilations should be used with caution, taking into account possible organizational bias; also, their content must be verified and updated. For help, ask a librarian!