News and information useful to Cleveland State College of Law students, faculty and staff.

Archive for the ‘Research Guides’


Center for Health Law & Policy Guide

image of scales & caduceusThe CSU|LAW Library Center for Health Law & Policy Guide provides information on, and links to, scores of resources concerning general health law, bioethics, Medicare/Medicaid law, and public health law.  The Guide covers key Federal and Ohio legislation and regulations, as well as numerous secondary sources, including study aids, books, and journals & blogs.  The Guide also covers key web sites of government entities and nonprofit, academic, and professional organizations, which provide access to a wealth of primary and secondary resources.  Researchers will also be interested in the Guide’s databases information, which covers several key interdisciplinary databases, such as PubMed.

Ohio Local Government Law Resource Guide

Looking for information on Ohio Local Government Law? Look no further! Visit the Law Library’s Ohio Local Government Law Resource Guide for resources you can use to find legal materials produced by the Ohio government. 

The guide includes information about Ohio’s forms of government, ordinances and resolutions, cases and administrative decisions and websites, databases and journals. If you need any assistance, don’t hesitate to reach out to a librarian at research.services@law.csuohio.edu.

Ohio Secondary Sources Research Guide

Secondary Sources can be incredibly helpful in legal research. These sources are typically used to help you, the researcher, with interpretation or analysis of primary sources. Secondary sources include things like legal dictionaries, law reviews, treatises, and restatements. 

If you are looking for a secondary source for any Ohio related research, check out the Law Library’s Ohio Secondary Sources Legal Research Guide. The guide will show you how to find and use secondary sources, practice materials, law review articles, and much more.

It’s About Efficiency – Why Use an Index When You Can Full Text?

If you’re looking for law review articles or other legal periodicals, your first thought might be to go to Lexis or Westlaw and navigate to the law reviews portion of those databases. From there you might decide to do a natural language or a terms and connectors (Boolean) search on your topic and review the results. The potential issue with this research strategy is that you may be facing a results list that is hundreds or even thousands deep. This is because you’re searching a full text database, which gives you results no matter where your search terms appear in a document.

Enter the index – a research tool that can help you quickly get to the most on point articles on your topic without having to review tons of results. Indexes are not full text, instead they bring you results when your search terms match the article title, abstract or author. This means that your results list will be much smaller, but way more on point, and this can save you time researching. Think about it – if your search terms make it into the abstract of an article, then it’s a guarantee that your article is all about those search terms.

One index to check out is Index to Legal Periodicals (ILP), which indexes legal periodicals from 1981 to the present. Many times your results in ILP will include a PDF or HTML version of the article, even though your search in the index did not search the article full text. If the text of the article is not included in your result, then you have the article citation and can look it up in Lexis, Westlaw, or elsewhere.

For more ideas about researching legal articles, have a look at our research guide Finding Articles in Law Reviews and Journals.

Research Guides and Law Databases for Paper Help

Students often access Lexis or Westlaw when beginning a research project. While these databases may be useful, widening the net in the search for information for your paper or project may be helpful.

When unsure about where to seek a particular type of information, think first of the law library’s Research Guides, which are subject-specific finding aids for locating resources on a topic. There is a direct link to the guides from the law library’s homepage.

The research guides also contain information on databases specific to the topic that may be of use to the researcher. The databases should be thought of in two broad categories: law databases and non-law databases. There is a link to the law databases from the law library’s homepage and the non-law databases (under the link ‘Research Databases’) from the Cleveland State Michael Schwartz (Main) Library’s homepage. The main library’s homepage link can also be found on the law library’s homepage.

The non-law databases contain full-text of articles and documents along with indexes and abstracts that cover a wide range of topics and interests. Some of the databases have many sources, while others might only have one source (e.g. Newspaper Source vs. New York Times).

Consider using other law databases (e.g., HeinOnline) to find information that is beyond the coverage of Lexis and Westlaw.