This guide provides instructions on how to find articles in legal and non-legal journals available through the Brooklyn Law School Library's electronic resources as well as Westlaw and Lexis. It covers both law reviews and non-legal academic journals as well as legal news and non-legal news publications.
Indexes are an excellent alternative to full-text searching when you want to find articles on a particular subject. By using an index, you can limit your search results to a specific subject area. Full-text keyword searching on the other hand will include articles that contain your keywords, regardless of the subject of the article. For example, let's say you want to write a paper on the use of litigation to mitigate the effects of climate change. You can do a full-text search in Westlaw or Lexis using the keywords climate change, litigation, and environment. This will retrieve all articles that contain these terms, whether or not the article itself actually discusses the subject of climate change litigation. Or, you can use an index and retrieve articles by subject - you may choose the subject "climate change" in a legal periodical index and retrieve all articles assigned the subject tag "climate change." You may even choose sub-topics to narrow your results further.
To use an index, click on the subtab under Law Reviews & Journals for "Legal Periodical Indexes". This will bring you to a list of the most commonly used legal periodical indexes.
The following Bluebook (21st Edition) rules address citation of materials referenced in this guide:
Rule 16: Periodical Materials (Law Reviews, Journals, Magazines, Newspapers, Student Notes, Book Review, Symposium, Newsletters)
NOTE: Where a print version is accessible, citation should be made to the print source. Where, however, the print source is difficult or impossible to obtain, or the governing authority has designated the electronic source as the official version, citation should be made to the electronic source with consideration of Rule 18's principles on authentication. If a periodical source is only available online, cite to it directly in accordance with Rule 18.2.2. (Rule 16.8 (b))
Rule 17: Unpublished and Forthcoming Sources
Rule 18: The Internet, Electronic Media, and Other Nonprint Resources (including CD-Roms (Rule 18.4), Microform (Rule 18.5), Films, Broadcasts, & Noncommercial Video (Rule 18.6), Audio Recordings (Rule 18.7))
The Bluebook requires the use and citation of traditional printed sources when available, unless there is a digital copy of the source available that is authenticated, official, or an exact copy of the printed source as described in Rule 18.2.1. (Rule 18.2)
Rule 20: Foreign Materials
See Tables 10, 13 & 14 for abbreviations