Tag Archives: Library

Check out these new additions to the Coastal Library collection!

We’ve added new books! To view a table listing the new print resources that the library received in June and July 2013, click Continue reading below. Most of the items listed there can be found in the General Collection and checked out for up to three weeks by members of the Coastal Community.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to stop by the Reference Desk on the third floor of the Library & Technology Center or contact the Reference Librarians via email, telephone (904.680.7612), or the Ask a Librarian form.

If you think we should consider adding something to the collection, please feel free to recommend it here (Coastal ID login required). Continue reading

Don’t Forget Secondary Sources

Librarians often tell students to start researching with secondary sources. Secondary sources are a great starting point for researching an unfamiliar area, providing a narrative explanation of complex concepts, giving citations to primary authority, and commentary on cutting edge legal issues. Something we don’t discuss that secondary sources can provide confirmation that there is no clear rule or guidance on an issue or common sense answer. In these instances, secondary sources are not our starting point, but rather our last ditch effort to find something, anything, to confirm that which is suspected as true. Recently a CLE (Continuing Legal Education) book confirmed for a researcher that there is no clear answer to a lien question. The book was found by using our catalog and searching for the larger concepts (association and Florida). Roaming the shelves is another great way to find secondary sources in print. We have a call number list on some of the shelves on the second floor that can help narrow this type of search.

Of course, secondary sources, including many CLEs, are available in Westlaw and Lexis, Hein Online, and sometimes in Google Books. It is important to remember that many secondary source titles are only available through one database. So, Tax Analyst titles are only available on Lexis, whereas WGL titles are only available in Westlaw. So it often a good idea as a student, who has educational access both Westlaw and Lexis, to search both vendors if information is still needed.

Free Software for You – and its Good!

All of us have been inundated with offers of free software we can install on our phones, tablets, and laptops. I’ve gotten a little cynical about it: legal publishers are eager to offer free apps and browser extensions as a way of marketing themselves. Still, some of it is actually pretty useful. Lexis Advance and WestlawNext are available through proprietary apps that work well.

Occasionally, free software can even be great! How would you like the chance to download software that is used daily by virtually all the “AmLaw 100” law firms; software that would cost you approximately $400.00 for a single-user license?

You can. CaseMap is available through LexisNexis, and all students can download it from their LexisNexis homepage. After logging on, go to the “Free Downloads” tab, and then look under “Litigation Tools” for CaseMap. Once you install it, open it, and click on the CaseMap Quick Start Tutorial on the right hand panel to get started. Any questions? Your librarians are here to help.

In the Library this Week (June 4th – 9th)

Take a Break in the Library
What:  Soda and Snacks
When:  Wednesday, June 5th starting at 12:30pm
Where:  Library Copy Lounge
Catch:  While supplies Last.

Possible Sound from the Atrium
There will be an event conducted in the Atrium tonight (4th), 6:30pm-8:30pm.  The noise from this event may be heard in areas of the Library, particularly on the 1st floor from 8:00pm-8:30pm.  Please Plan your Studying Accordingly.

Other law libraries

We at the Florida Coastal Library really, really like you all.  We are here to help and answer your questions.  But you may not be close by, you may need a print resource.  If you can’t come to us, then definitely go to another library!  They are (almost) as nice and helpful as we are.

Where can you go?  Well, that depends.  Most states have some kind of public law library system – you can look at some lists of those libraries, both national and regional.  You can also do a search in Google (or your favorite search engine) for something like county law library list (if you have an area, like Florida or California or Duval County, to add to the search that’s even better!).

You can also use public law school libraries for free in most cases.  And even private law schools will often let you in (sometimes for a small fee, but often at least a couple times for free).  There are also some lists of the law school libraries (this one goes directly to their catalogs, but you can then find the name of the law school near you).  Or you can look at the law schools and find their library page.

Once you find a library – do not be shy to talk to the librarians, they want to help you (just be sure to use your best library voice…).

Good Summer Reads!

Are you looking for some light summer reading? Nothing is better at the beach than a law book! Why read the latest trashy novel or hot biography when Android apps in one hour for lawyers  or Finding your voice in law school: mastering classroom cold calls, job interviews, and other verbal challenges is available? You can find all your summer reading needs through the Coastal catalog including  these new acquisitions. Please shake the sand out before returning them.

Continue reading

Aron Swartz, Open Access, and Libraries

The tragic suicide of Aron Swartz has put the Open Access movement in the spotlight. Open Access is the practice of providing free, unrestricted access to scholarly work through the internet. Proponents of open access to scholarly journals argue that since taxpayers fund almost all research, they should not have to purchase the results of that research from a private publisher.  Journal subscription costs are born by libraries, who are increasingly saying “No,” to expensive journals. For more discussion of open access, see this web page by Peter Suber, Director of Harvard’s Open Access Project: http://bit.ly/oa-overview

The oldest law library in the United States is a great resource for small firms and solo-practitioners!

The Jenkins Law Library located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania is over 200 years old, but don’t let its age cause you to think that it is just a relic of the past. The Jenkins Law Library is still going strong and makes available a wealth of legal research tools and resources. Students, solo-practitioners, and law firms can become members of the law library and take advantage of the many databases and resources available. Even if you are not a member of the Jenkins Law Library, the law library offers services that may be useful to attorneys, such as legal research, copying, Shepardizing or Keyciting cases, and document delivery. The Jenkins Law Library is a great low cost alternative to other well-known legal information providers.

WorldCat.org

By now, most of you have probably used Encore – our library’s catalog. More efficient (though no less magical) than the card catalogs of old, Encore allows you to see all the library resources you have access to as a member of the Coastal Community.

But what about when you are off site? Maybe you want to do some light ConLaw reading over holiday break? Or maybe that last minute preparation for Moot Court oral argument has to be done out of town?

Fear not, just as Encore is a catalog that shows you what we have here at Coastal, WorldCat.org is a catalog that can show you what is available wherever you are around the world.

Simply type in your preferred search using title/author/keyword terms and then you can narrow by facets on the left, similar to Encore. Once you locate a particular record, you can see which libraries hold that resource and how far they are from your location.

Take Legal Research in a Nutshell, for example, since we all know how important it is to keep your legal research skills sharp.The WorldCat.org record for this resource can he found here. Follow that link and you’ll have the chance to Enter your location – zip code, city/state (or province), or country.

Enter 32256, for example, and you’ll see that the closest library to hold that resource is… the Florida Coastal School of Law Library & Technology Center! What library closest to you has it?