Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Happy New Year and Welcome to Spot-On Legal Research 2016

This post is going to ask you a few personal questions – did you make some New Year resolutions for 2016? Did any of them involve legal research? If not, let me suggest the following, guaranteed to help you get your research house in order:

Resolution: Attend the advanced certification sessions offered by Steven Albro for Lexis Advance coming up on Monday, January 25th and Wednesday, January 27th.  If you are a 1L at Western New England University School of Law, your Lawyering Skills professor may be offering extra credit for taking the advanced certifications. More on that later.

Resolution: Although you can take the WestlawNext certification series any time because it is offered exclusively online, Western New England University School of Law is promoting the WestlawNext certification process during the week of February 1st. This too may be eligible for extra credit from your Lawyering Skills professor. The certification process is broken down into two modules – “research more efficiently” and “research more productively.” To earn the certificate, take 6 of the short sessions offered under each module (all fall between 4 and 10 minutes) and then take the test. Voila! Certification. Make this the year you master KeyCite.

Resolution: Is there an aspect of legal research that you find particularly difficult? Are you terrified of being asked to do legislative history in your internship job? Make an appointment with your Law Librarian and ask him or her to go over that concept with you until you get it.  

Resolution: If that one-on-one with your Librarian seems too intense, how about asking him or her for a recommendation of a research text that you can consult? Our Library just purchased a book called Strategic Legal Research: Finding the Information You Need Efficiently and Cost-Effectively, authored by Tobin A. Sparling, a legal research and writing professor at South Texas College of Law. This book was recommended in a recent review in Law Library Journal as a great place to send a student who wants to know how to start and finish the research process.

Resolution: Here’s something new for 2016 – what about using one of the Law Library’s new e-books if you need a treatise on a particular topic of research? For example, want some background on elder law in Massachusetts? Go to this link, use your Library barcode and PIN and then do a keyword search – in this case “elder law” & Massachusetts, and presto, you have full access to Massachusetts Elder Law, 2d edition, published by LexisNexis. Soon you will be able to search for e-books directly in our catalogue but until then, use the above link.

You can take this quiz designed by psychologist Richard Wiseman to see if you will be one of the 22% of Americans who will stick to their New Year resolutions, or, you can just call us at 413-782-1458 and make that appointment for your legal research tutorial. In all events, Happy New Year!   

1 comment:

  1. Great post regarding Happy New Year. It is really special day because all relationships are important tin our life and on new year, we get a chance to live some memorable moments. So, I want to wish you a very happy New Year. Cheers.