Law Library News for the Week of June 2, 2008

Cheryl Nyberg, editor.

Try Something New

Have you noticed the new search box on the Law Library’s homepage? In the center column, below the library catalog search box? What is that grey box featuring a globe on which the words articles, laws, books, and regulations appear? Search combined databases? Search 360?

You have just encountered Search 360, a new database searching tool that the Library is testing.

With one search, you can find articles, books, government publications, laws, and a lot more. A mix of commercial databases and free websites is available, including:

  • CiNii (Japanese articles, reports, and proceedings on all subjects)
  • LegalTrac (law review articles)
  • PAIS (public policy articles)
  • Summit (books and other materials from 30+ libraries in Oregon and Washington
  • Thomas (bills and bill status, treaties, and other Congressional sources)

Enter search words or phrases (in quotations) in the box on the Library homepage to search all available databases. Or, click on the “More Search Options” link below the search box to review choices for more selective groups of databases. For instance, you can just search for East Asian law material or for articles from nonlaw journals.

Sounds great, right? There must be a catch.

Well, yes, a couple in fact.

Search 360 doesn’t have a password or ID to use LexisNexis or Westlaw, so you will still want to search those sources independently. And because Search 360 is working through dozens of databases using a variety of search systems, it takes a little time and loses some refinements beloved by power users.

To compensate for some of its disadvantages, Search 360 offers users several ways to sort their results. The most interesting feature is the one that clusters the search results by topic. Searching all databases for the word “Rehnquist” retrieves thousands of items. You can narrow the results by selecting one of the clusters, such as “Chief Justice” or “Rehnquist Court.”

Test out this new tool and let us know what you think!

Good Bye and Good Luck

Good luck on your finals and best wishes for a successful summer. May graduating 3Ls pass the bar exam with flying colors and begin their professional careers with confidence and enthusiasm.

Remember that the staff of the Gallagher Law Library is always here to help you. We invite you to attend the Bridge the Legal Research Gap on June 24th and to call or email the Reference librarians anytime with your legal research questions.

The Library will operate on its interim schedule beginning Saturday, June 14:

June 14 – 17, Sat – Tue, Closed
June 18 – 20, Wed – Fri, 8am – 5pm
June 21 – 22, Sat – Sun, Closed
June 23, Mon, Summer Quarter hours begin

Visit the Law Library Hours page for more information.

©2011, Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, University of Washington