Welcome to the Law Subject Guide - giving you information on library resources and services.
We always recommend that students begin their database training with the Using Legal Databases session, as this provides an introduction to the three main databases you will need during your studies. We run this live session as part of our 'Using the Library' lectures for undergraduate, postgraduate and PhD students at the start of each semester. You can book on to any of our live training events via the MyEd Booking system.
We have also recorded a version of this session that can be viewed at any time on the Law Librarian Media Hopper Channel.
We're also building a repository of training videos of our databases, including demonstration videos for Westlaw, LexisLibrary and HeinOnline. If you'd like a demonstration for one of our databases which we don't already have recorded, please contact us by email: email@example.com.
You may also be interested in the recent video we've made entitled 'Finding International Legal Resources via the University Library' (8 minutes 30 seconds) which offers a brief look at some of the databases which can be used to research International Law.
Scottish Legal Systems is a foundation course which many undergraduate students are required to take. There are some resources which it will be important for you to find to support your studies.
Stair Memorial Encyclopaedia: You will need to access this key resource for your course.
Finding Institutional Writers: Sometimes you will need to access materials written by the Institutional Writers of Scotland.
Advanced Legal Writing is an important course which many undergraduate students are required to take in their third year. There are some resources which it will be important for you to find to support your studies. We recorded a short video (10 minutes) to remind you of some of the ways that the Law Library can support your studies.
Some key resources to help you with legal writing can be found below:
Postgraduate and PhD students in the School of Law sometimes require specific assistance with using legal databases to conduct advanced searches and research. We've created a number of Microsoft Sway documents that we think will support students at this level of study.
If you require additional support for your research project, please contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a one-to-one appointment, or use the MyEd booking system to find a 'literature search clinic' for the School of Law.
LibSmart is an online, self-enrol Learn course developed with the aim of ensuring that every student is digitally capable in using online library resources for their study and research. Open to all, students can choose to complete the whole course or just the one or two modules which are most relevant at any point in the academic year. For each module completed, you will earn a digital badge!
LibSmart I is designed to be studied how and when it suits you. It has five modules that will take you step by step from starting to use the library to researching a topic for a report or essay. You can choose to work through every module or just the one or two most relevant to you.
LibSmart II will help you with the next level of library research, supporting advanced research projects like dissertations or systematic reviews. We've designed these modules to have a particular subject focus in mind so that students from different disciplines will be able to confidently navigate resources and databases that they may not be too familiar with.
We've written a Legal Information module which we think will be of particular use to anyone joining the School of Law as a postgraduate student who may not have undergraduate qualifications in Law, or for those working across disciplines (for example, interested in legal aspects of medical ethics, patents and trademarking, HR and employer liability, etc).
To find out more about how to register and access the resources, visit the LibSmart page for full instructions: www.ed.ac.uk/is/LibSmart
If you have used the resources on this page and have further questions about getting support with our legal databases, please contact us to discuss.
You can book one of our one-to-one appointments via the MyEd Events Booking system; just search for “Literature search clinic” and select the Law specific event, or search for “Law” and select provider group “IS Library and University Collections” to find available dates.
Alternatively you can email us directly on email@example.com to discuss a suitable date.
(Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday AM)
Student Associate Trainers for Westlaw and LexisLibrary: Both of these useful resources have a student trainer at the university who can meet with you to offer advice and training. Contact them for more information.
The databases have some help and training links on their search pages, or have dedicated guides to help you get started with their resources.
Additional databases for research:
There are free courses available from the Digital Skills and Training team.
Staff and students also have access to LinkedIn Learning- an online skills development service which contains 13,000 high quality courses in creative, technology and business. Courses are available in a range of different languages.