INFO 681

Drexel University
College of Information Science and Technology
Winter Quarter, 1998


Instructor: Heidi Weston Heller

Offices: 410 Rush Building, (215) 895-2493
             T218 Biddle Law Library, (215) 898-6724 (9a.m. - 2 p.m. M, T, W, F only)

Other:  Home phone: (610) 667-1485


Required Text:

The Blue Book: A Uniform System of Citation, 16th ed. Harvard Law Review, 1996.
Robert C. Berring, Finding the Law, 10th ed., West, 1995
Nancy P. Johnson and J. Wesley Cochran, Legal Research Exercises to Accompany - How to Find the Law, 9th ed., West, 1996.

Recommended Texts:

J. Myron Jacobstein and Roy M. Mersky, Fundamentals of Legal Research, 6th ed, Foundation Press, 1994.
Morris Cohen, Robert C. Berring, and Kent C. Olson, How to Find the Law, 9th ed., West, 1989.


Participation and attendance 10%
Workbook exercises and weekly "Examine and Explain" exercises 30%
Final Exam 60%
(workbook exercises and E&E's are not graded)

If you are having trouble with a workbook question...

Re-read the question, carefully.
Re-read the spine of the volume you'r using to find the answer.
Read the front matter of that volume
If still puzzled, call me.


Week 1 - Thursday, Jan 8

Introduction to course and course materials; lecture on background of legal research, basic legal research vocabulary, case law publication; orientation to Biddle Law Library; demonstration of LOLA.

Assignments for Jan 15:

Introduction and chapters 1, 2, and 4 in Berring
Workbook exercises 2 (skip questions 15-17)
Week 1 E&E

Week 2 - Thursday, Jan 15

Case publication and case finding; reporters and digests.
Hand in exercises 2 and E&E from Week 1

Assignments for Jan. 22:

Chapter 3 in Berring
Workbook exercises 3 (skip questions 8&9) and 4 (skip 11-15)
Week 2 E&E

Week 3 - Thurday, Jan. 22

Case verification and updating
Hand in exercises 3 & 4 and E&E from Week 2

Assignments for Jan. 29:

Chapters 5&9 in Berring
Workbook exercise 6, then 5
Week 3 E&E

Week 4- Jan. 29

Statutes and session laws, court rules
Hand in exercises 5&6
Week 4 E&E

Assignments for Feb. 5:

Chapters 6&7 in Berring
Workbook exercises 8&9
Week 4 E&E

Week 5 - Thursday, Feb. 5

Computer-Assisted Legal Research (CALR)
Hand in exercises 8&9 and E&E from Week 4

Assignments for Feb. 12:

Chapter 8 in Berring
CALR assignments
Week 5 E&E

Week 6 - Thursday, Feb 12

Administrative law sources; cases, codes, guidance
Hand in CALR assignments and E&E from week 5

Assignments for Feb. 19:

Chapter 10 in Berring
Workbook exercise 12
Week 6 E&E

Week 7 - Thursday, Feb. 19

Legal indexes & encyclopedias, casebooks, hornbooks, nutshells and study guides.
Hand in exercise 12 and E&E from week 6

Assignments for Feb 26:

Chapter 11 in Berring
Workbook exercise 14
Week &  E&E

Week 8 - Thursday Feb. 26

Other secondary sources; research strategies
Hand in exercise 14 and  E&E from week 7

Assignments for March 5:

Read Berring, "How to Be a Great Reference Librarian," 4(1) LRSQ (1984), reprinted at page 159 of  The Spririt of Law Librarianship: A Reader, Rothman, 1991 (on Closed Reserve at Biddle Law Library)
Workbook exercise 15
Week 8  E&E

Week 9 - Thursday, March 5

Research strategies; the profession of law librarianship
Hand in exercise 15 and  E&E from week 8

Assignments for March 12

Workbook exercise 7

Week 10 - Thursday, March 12

Review course final
Hand in exercise 7

Week 11 - Final Exam

Date, time and format TBA



Week 1 Blacks Law Dictionary
Want's Federal-State Court Directgory, any edition
The Blue Book: A Uniform System of Citation, 16edition
Beiber's Dictionary of Legal Abbreviations: Reference Guide

KF156.B53 1990 (REF)
KF8700.Z19.F42 19__ (Ready Ref)
KF245.U54 1996(REF)
KF246.B46 1997 (REF)
Week  2 United States Law Week, any edition
West's Federal Rules Decisions, any volume
How to Find the Law, 9th edition
Fundamentals of Legal Reseach, 6th edition
KF105.B8 (CR *)
KF8839.F4 (Biddle)
KF240.C583 1989 (RRR *)
KF240.J34 1994 (RRR *)
Week  3 Pennsylvania District and County Reports, any volume
American Bench: Judges of the Nation, any edition
Almanac of the Federal Judiciary, 1997 ed.
Law and Legal Information Directory, 9th ed.
KDF51.A4 D55 (Biddle)
KF8700.A19 A47 (SR *)
FOLIO KF8775.A6 A45 1997 (SR)
KF190.L35 9th ed. (ReadyRef)
Week  4 Westlaw Database Directory
Lexis/Nexis 1997 Directory of Online Services
Using Computers in Legal Research: A Guide to Lexis and Westlaw
Law and Legal Information Directory, 9th ed.
(Not cataloged; ask at REF)
(Not cataloged; ask at REF)
KF242.A1 W74 1994 (Biddle)
KF90.S52 1992 (REF)
Week  5 Specialized Legal Research
Subject Compilations of State Law, any edition
Who's Who in American Law, any edition
Federal Locall Court Rules, 2d edition
KF240.S63 1987 (REF)
KF240.S795 (REF)
KF372.W48 (REF *)
KF8820.A19 1995 (Biddle)
Week  6 Sources of Compiled Legislative Histories
Federal Legislative Histories: An Annotated Bibliography and Index
United States Government Manual, 1997/1998
Oxford Companion to the Supreme Court of the United States
KF42.2 1979 (REF *)
KF42.2 1994 (REF)

JK421.A3 (ReadyRef)
KF8742.A35 093 1992 (REF *)
Week  7 Legal Looseleafs in Print
Legal Newsletters in Print
Constitution of the United States of American: Analysis and Interpretation
ABA/BNA Lawyers Manual on Professional Conduct
KF1.S73 1997 (ReadyRef)
KF1.L44 (ReadyRef)
KF4527.K54 1996 (REF *)

KF305.A8 A23 1984 (CR)
Week  8 AALS Directory of Law Teachers, 1996-1997
AALL Spectrum
Martindale Hubbell Law Directory

KF266.D55 (Ready Reference
Per A (latest issues in RRR)
KF190.M37 1997 (REF)

         *Also in other locations. Check LOLA.
            RRR=Reserve Reading Room; CR=Closed Reserve; SR=Security Reserve