Learning about the subject
Use your research vocabulary as a source of search terms for both online and manual sources. These sources also contain citations to relevant primary authority.
SOURCES: Legal Encyclopedias
Legal Encyclopedias are useful when you know nothing about a particular area of law. With an Encyclopedia, you get a general idea of the topic. However, a legal encyclopedia will not give you in-dept knowledge of a particular subject.
List of Federal and California Legal Encyclopedias:
Treatises focuse on a single area of law, such as trademarks, in much greater detail than a legal encyclopedia. Treatises can also lead you to relevant primary authority such as cases.
Do a keyword search for background materials on the libraries' online catalog using the search terms you have listed.
SOURCES: Law Review Articles
Law review articles are the most detailed of a particular area of law. In addition, law reviews are the most persuasive source of secondary authority. However, the focus of law reviews are so narrow that you will probably not find a law review article that is relevant to your area of research. In addition, a law review article is probably not a good source for locating relevant cases.
SOURCES: Other Secondary Materials
In addition to the secondary materials already mentioned, there are other secondary sources that might be relevant to your research.
Follow the links for examples of other secondary materials:
SOURCES: Looseleaf Sets
Looseleaf sets are a type of legal resource which brings together a variety of types of information from either primary or secondary sources concerning a particular topic or area of law. Looseleaf sets are good at keeping up with current events in the law
Click on the links to see examples from major publishers of looseleaf sets: