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Finding and Researching Law-Related Paper Topics: Key Sources

This guide is designed to help students locate legal databases which are useful for identifying paper topics. The full-text legal resources listed below are good starting points for legal research in general.

Advice on Scholarly Writing for Law Students

Preemption Check

Searching for Novel Issues

More Information

For a complete list of law-related databases available to OU students and faculty, please visit the Law Library web site.

Circuit Splits

Sample Westlaw and Lexis searches for topics that are a "first impression" to a court or "beyond the scope" of a law review article:

  • Courts of Appeals - Circuit Split: adv: circuit /s split and HE(copyright) and DA(aft2010)
  • Courts of Appeals - First Impression: adv: (issue or question or matter) /s ("first impression" or novel) & ATLEAST5(copyright) & da(aft 2010)
    • see copyright example on Westlaw
  • Law Reviews - Beyond the Scope: "beyond the scope" /s (note or article or comment) & ATLEAST5(copyright) & da(aft 2010)
    • see copyright example on Westlaw

Call for Papers

Additional Guides for Locating Paper Topics

Google Search - Hot Topics in Criminal Law

Google Web Search

Google Search - Circuit Splits

Google Web Search

Subject Specialist

Darin Fox's picture
Darin Fox
Darin K. Fox
Associate Dean
Director of the Law Library
and Professor of Law
Donald E. Pray Law Library
University of Oklahoma College of Law
Norman, OK 73019
Phone: 405-325-6540

Boolean Search Techniques for Paper Topics