Selecting Your Courses for Next Year: Why You Should Consider Legal Research

Selecting Your Courses for Next Year: Why You Should Consider Legal Research

Among the most important skills all lawyers rely upon is the ability to do legal research—to find what’s needed to interpret and analyze legal issues. Legal research is an integral part of the “competencies” that NYLS and the ABA require of law students. Effective research skills are vital to students engaged in any type of legal writing, to those who are clerking or participating in externships, and to those entering legal practice.

To help you prepare for the realities of law practice, we offer a number of courses that build upon skills learned in the first year and will make you a more efficient, confident and successful researcher.

Legal Research: Practical Skills (1 credit)
Builds on fundamental research skills through refining students’ techniques, introducing shortcuts and new approaches, and developing effective strategies. The course focuses on finding legislation, administrative materials, and related cases; using the secondary sources relied on by practitioners; attaining greater proficiency and comfort with Lexis, Westlaw, Bloomberg Law, and other online research tools, including reliable free and low-cost sources. We also offer this class with a focus on a particular substantive practice area, including Corporate & Business Law; Criminal Law; Family Law; Foreign and International Law; Intellectual Property Law; Labor and Employment Law; and Real Estate Law.

Legal Research: Skills for the Digital World (3 credits)
Continues to build on the fundamentals described in Legal Research: Practical Skills. Students concentrate on more advanced techniques and strategies and learn to evaluate online and print materials in order to choose the best and most cost effective source for particular projects. Some assignments are geared to students’ individual subject interests. Take-home assignments test and enhance students’ ability to perform various research tasks and strengthen their understanding of important research process and strategy considerations.

Want more information? Contact Prof. Michael Roffer