Library Write-In: Saturday, October 28th

Photo 1Each semester, Professors Baker and Drake host a write-in in the law library’s Collaborative Commons, as part of the Scribes Student Legal Writing Society series of events on scholarly research and writing.  This fall, the write-in is being held on Saturday, October 28th from 9:00am to 2:00pm.

At the write-in, we’ll provide breakfast and lunch.  Professor Baker and Professor Drake will also be on hand to help with any part of the research and writing process from paper organization and research help to editing and Bluebooking.  At lunchtime, we’ll give some quick tips for editing, but we’re there all day to help with whatever you need.  Last year’s students reported that having a day dedicated to writing really helped them focus in on their comments and seminar papers, and that the collective energy in the room pushed them forward.Photo 3

To attend, RSVP to Professor Drake at alyson.drake@ttu.edu and tell her you’d like to attend.  (As an added bonus, this will help us know how much food to order!)  We hope to see you there!

Please note: You don’t have to stay the entire time. You can drop by for all or part of the event.

The Importance of Legal Research Skills for Practice

Nearly all law schools are focusing on preparing “practice-ready” graduates. This approach to legal education was advanced in the 1990’s with the McCrate Report, and it has really taken hold within the last few years. A major part of preparing practice-ready grads is teaching effective, efficient legal research skills. For the past couple of years, survey after survey has shown the continued importance of legal research skills for practice.

In 2013, Steve Lastres, Director of Library & Knowledge Management at Debevoise & Plimpton LLP, analyzed the results of a recent survey conducted by The Research Intelligence Group called the “New Attorney Research Methods Survey.” Survey respondents “included 190 young attorneys equally represented by large and small law firms across a variety of practice areas. Nearly forty percent of the respondents were 28 or younger, in practice for five or less years, and a quarter of the respondents were recent law school graduates from the class of 2011 or 2012.”

Key findings from the survey included the following:

  • Newer attorneys spend more than 30% of their time doing legal research
  • Approximately 50% of associates think legal research should be a larger part of the law school curriculum
  • Over 80% of associates use an extensive range of content from traditional primary law and secondary materials to News, Court Transcripts, Verdicts, Dockets, Public Records and more.
  • Legal Classification systems are rarely used (only 12% begin with a legal classification system)
  • Attorneys use free online research resources but spend most of their time, over 8 hours per week, using paid-for online research services.

Additionally in 2013, the Wall Street Journal blog posted the results of a focus-group study with legal employers where the results showed that employers are looking for expert researchers with people skills. According to this study, “[t]he focus-group participants said ideal job applicants have a strong work ethic, can work independently without excessive ‘hand holding,’ and would bring a positive attitude to the workplace.” The other important skill was the ability to research. 

“Employers, particularly those with more years in practice, rely on new attorneys to be research experts. The employers in [the] focus groups have high expectations when it comes to new hires’ research skills, i.e., ‘[t]hey should be able to adequately and effectively find everything that’s up to the minute.’” Susan Wawrose, What Do Legal Employers Want to See in New Graduates?: Using Focus Groups to Find Out, 39 Ohio N. U. L. Rev. 505 (2013).

The legal employers noted that “[b]eing a research expert also means knowing how to scour books, not just websites. ‘Statutes, treatises and encyclopedias, and desk books are the sources employers still use in paper form. For this reason, new attorneys may want to be familiar with these paper sources.’” Id.

Last but not least, BAR/BRI recently released the first of what it intends to be an annual survey on the “State of the Legal Field.” The objective is to “evaluate industry perceptions about the state of the legal field” and establish benchmarks related to student practice readiness, employment expectations, employment trends, and law degree return on investment. Faculty, law students, and practitioners were surveyed.

Key finding number 2 from the BAR/BRI report stated that “[f]aculty placed very little importance on research, with just 4 percent citing it as the most important skill for recent law school graduates. In contrast, 18 percent of attorneys named research the most important skill a new lawyer should possess.”

These surveys offer proof from practitioners that legal research is a necessary skill for practice.

*This post was originally published on the RIPS Law Librarian Blog.

GovSearch: Power Search

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This is the second in a four part series blog post spotlighting Carroll Publishing’s GovSearch Suite.

What is a Power Search?

The Power Search feature allows you to search for people or offices and narrow your search by Keyword, Organizational Qualifiers, Geographic Qualifiers, and GovSense. You can also tailor your results to show positions or offices. Under the Positions option, you can further narrow the results by choosing between all, elected, plum, acting, nominee, or vacancy.

How Do I Perform a Power Search?

On the GovSearch home page, there is a People & Offices tab located at the top of the page. Under the People & Offices tab, you can locate the Power Search feature.

Below is a view of the home page. The green box indicates where the Power Search Feature can be located under the People & Offices tab.

People and Offices Tab with box

Below is a view of the Power Search feature. The green boxes indicate ways to narrow your search.

Power search with boxes

After entering a search term, the results page will generate a list of individuals or offices that relate to your search term. The results are organized alphabetically by last name. Along with the individual’s name, the results provide you with the person’s title, office, department, area, head office, location, and county.

Below is a view of the results page. The green box indicates the categories of information the results provide.

Results page with green box on categories

What Can I Do with the Results of a Power Search?

After the search tool generates your result, you can do various things with the results. On the left side of the name column, you can select specific names. At the bottom of the results page, you can choose to Select All or Clear All. After choosing a select option, you can either print or make a list of the selected results.

Below is a view of the results page. The green boxes indicate where you can individually select results, select all, or clear all. The green boxes also indicate where the make a list option and the print options are located on the results page.

results with green boxes around selection options

Access to Carroll Publishing’s GovSearch database is available through the Texas Tech Law Library website under the Electronic Databases tab.

September 2017 New Books

2017 Sept books 2

In September 2017, the Law Library added the following new titles to the collection to support the research and curricular needs of our faculty and students.

ANIMAL LAW

  1. Gregory E. Kaebnick and Bruce Jennings, eds., Recreating the Wild: de-extinction, technology, and the ethics of conservation (2017).
  2. Lacey Levitt, Gary Patronek, and Thomas Grisso, eds., Animal Maltreatment: forensic mental health issues and evaluations (2016).

CIVIL RIGHTS

  1. Eugene Schlossberger, A Holistic Approach to Rights: affirmative action, reproductive rights, censorship, and future generations (2008).
  2. Ronnie Bernard Tucker, Affirmative Action, the Supreme Court, and Political Power in the Old Confederacy (2000).

COMMUNICATIONS LAW

  1. Joseph J. Hemmer, Jr., Communication Law: the Supreme Court and the First Amendment (2006).

CRIMINAL LAW AND PROCEDURE

  1. James G. Houston, Phillip B. Bridgmon, and William W. Parsons, Criminal Justice and the Policy Process (2008).

ECONOMICS

  1. Samuel Gregg, The Commercial Society: foundations and challenges in a global age (2007).

EDUCATION LAW

  1. William F. Tate IV, Nancy Staudt, and Ashley Macrander, The Crisis of Race in Higher Education: a day of discovery and dialogue (2017).

ESTATES AND TRUSTS

  1. Sheila M. Blackford, Trust Accounting in One Hour for Lawyers (2017).

HEALTH LAW AND POLICY

  1. Colin L. Soskolne, ed., Sustaining Life on Earth: environmental and human health through global governance (2008).

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY LAW

  1. Henry C. Mitchell, The Intellectual Commons: toward an ecology of intellectual property (2005).

LAW AND SOCIETY

  1. Daphne M. Rolle, A Second Appeal: a consideration of freedom and social justice (2010).
  2. Ingrid Creppell, Russell Hardin, and Stephen Macedo, eds., Toleration on Trial (2008).

LEGAL HISTORY

  1. Steven Wilf, The Law Before the Law (2008).

LEGAL PROFESSION

  1. Angus Lyon, A Lawyer’s Guide to Wellbeing and Managing Stress (2015).

MEDICAL JURISPRUDENCE

  1. Danielle Griffiths and Andrew Sanders, ed., Bioethics, Medicine, and the Criminal Law (2013).

POLITICS

  1. Ronald J. Pestritto and Thomas G. West, eds., Challenges to the American Founding: slavery, historicism, and progressivism in the nineteenth century (2005).
  2. E. Robert Statham, Jr., Colonial Constitutionalism: the tyranny of United States’ offshore territorial policy and relations (2002).

RACE AND ETHNICITY

  1. Elwood Watson, Outsiders Within: black women in the legal academy after Brown v. Board (2008).

SENTENCING AND PUNISHMENT

  1. American Psychiatric Association, Psychiatric Services in Correctional Facilities (2016).

TAXATION—FEDERAL

  1. Joni Larson, A Practitioner’s Guide to Tax Evidence: a primer on the Federal Rules of Evidence as applied by the Tax Court (2017).

All of these books are available from the Law Library. If you would like to check out any of these titles, please contact the circulation desk at either 806-742-3957 or circulation.law@ttu.edu. Library staff will be able to assist in locating and checking out any of these items.

September 2017 Law Faculty Publications & News

Throughout September 2017, the Law Library received alerts for full-time TTU Law Faculty publications and news. Below is a compilation of daily alerts for September 1 to September 30, 2017.

Articles:
1. Arnold H. Loewy, The Wisdom of Universal DNA Collection: A Reply to Professor Meghan J. Ryan, 20 SMU Sci. & Tech. L. Rev. 21 (2017).

2. Bryan T. Camp, Equitable Principles and Jurisdictional Time Periods, Part 1, 2017 TXN Magazine 37-34.

3. Tracy Hresko Pearl, Fast & Furious: The Misregulation of Driverless Cars, 73 N.Y.U. Ann. Surv. Am. L. 19 (2017).

4. Gerry W. Beyer, Keeping Current—Probate, 31 Prob. & Prop. 30 (September/October 2017).

5. Bryan T. Camp, Franklin Roosevelt and the Forgotten History of the Earned Income Tax Credit, 20 Green Bag 2d 337 (Summer 2017).

Op-Ed:
1. Arnold Loewy & Charles Moster, It’s Debatable: Should hate speech be protected?, Lubbock Avalanche-J. (Sept. 1, 2017 09:45 pm), http://lubbockonline.com/opinion/opinion-columnists/2017-09-01/it-s-debatable-should-hate-speech-be-protected.

2. Arnold Loewy & Charles Moster, It’s Debatable: Can government invade sanctuary cities?, Lubbock Avalanche-J. (Sept. 15, 2017 05:33 pm), http://lubbockonline.com/opinion/opinion-columnists/2017-09-15/it-s-debatable-can-government-invade-sanctuary-cities.

3. Arnold Loewy & Charles Moster, It’s Debatable: Should burning the flag be a legal right?, LUBBOCK AVALANCHE-J. (Sept. 29, 2017 09:33 pm), http://lubbockonline.com/opinion/opinion-columnists/2017-09-29/it-s-debatable-should-burning-flag-be-legal-right.

Cited:
1. Prof. Loewy’s article A Proposal for the Universal Collection of DNA was cited in the following article: Meghan J. Ryan, The Privacy, Probability, and Political Pitfalls of Universal DNA Collection, 20 SMU Sci. & Tech. L. Rev. 3 (2017).

2. Prof. Humphrey’s article ‘‘But I’m Brain-Dead and Pregnant”: Advance Directive Pregnancy Exclusions and End-of-Life Wishes was cited in the following article: Dara E. Purvis, The Rules of Maternity, 84 Tenn. L. Rev. 367 (2017).

3. Prof. Black’s treatise FAMILY LAW IN UTAH was cited in several sections of 2 Utah Prac., Utah Family Law (2017 ed.).

4. Prof. Robert Sherwin’s article #havewereallythoughtthisthrough?: Why Granting Trademark Protection to Hashtags Is Unnecessary, Duplicative, and Downright Dangerous was cited in the following article: Delaram Yousefi, #protected: Hashtags, Trademarks, and the First Amendment, 33 Touro L. Rev. 1343 (2017).

5. Prof. Murphy’s work with Sidney A. Shapiro on the article Eight Things Americans Can’t Figure Out About Controlling Administrative Power was cited in the following article: Melissa Mortazavi, Rulemaking Ex Machina, 117 Colum. L. Rev. Online 202 (2017).

6. Two of Prof. Beyer’s articles, Statutory Fill-in Will Forms–The First Decade: Theoretical Constructs and Empirical Findings and Statutory Will Methodologies–Incorporated Forms vs. Fill-In Forms: Rivalry or Peaceful Coexistence?, are cited in the following article: Susan M. Chesler & Karen J. Sneddon, Tales from A Form Book: Stock Stories and Transactional Documents, 78 L. Rev. 237 (2017).

7. Two of Prof. Casto’s books, The Supreme Court in the Early Republic: The Chief Justiceships of John Jay and Oliver Ellsworth and Foreign Affairs and the Constitution in the Age of Fighting Sail are cited in the following article: Scott Ingram, Representing the United States Government: Reconceiving the Federal Prosecutor’s Role Through A Historical Lens, 31 Notre Dame J.L. Ethics & Pub. Pol’y 293 (2017).

Quoted:
1. Prof. Loewy was quoted in the following article: Meghan J. Ryan, The Privacy, Probability, and Political Pitfalls of Universal DNA Collection, 20 SMU Sci. & Tech. L. Rev. 3 (2017).

2. Prof. Ramirez was quoted in the following newspaper article: Karen Michael, Texas Tech pleased with enrollment numbers, Hispanic undergrad increases, LUBBOCK AVALANCHE-J. (Sept. 15, 2017 07:41 pm), http://lubbockonline.com/education/news/local-news/2017-09-15/texas-tech-pleased-enrollment-numbers-hispanic-undergrad.

3. Prof. Ramirez was quoted in the following newspaper article: Gabriel Monte, State judicial commission reprimands Lamesa judge, LUBBOCK AVALANCHE-J. (Sept. 20, 2017 07:38 pm), http://lubbockonline.com/news/crime-and-courts/local-news/2017-09-20/state-judicial-commission-reprimands-lamesa-judge.

News:
1. Prof. Tracy Pearl’s paper on semi-autonomous cars has been selected for presentation at the Law-STEM junior faculty forum at the University of Pennsylvania in October.  The conference is part of a consortium being run by the law schools at Stanford, Northwestern, and Penn.

2. Prof. Tracy Pearl has been selected to co-chair the development committee of the Women’s Faculty Writing Program on the TTU main campus.

3. On September 9, 2017, Prof. Gerry W. Beyer was the lead-off speaker at the 2017 Rocky Mountain Regional Meeting of the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel in Austin, Texas. His presentation was entitled Cyber Estate Planning and Administration and featured a detailed critique of the Revised Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act.

4. Prof. Baker was asked by the President Greg Lambert of the American Association of Law Libraries to sit on an advisory panel regarding the state of the profession during  AY2017-2018.

5. On September 19, 2017, Prof. Gerry W. Beyer was the featured speaker at a meeting of the Midland Odessa Business and Estate Council in Midland, Texas. His presentation and accompanying paper were entitled Avoiding the Estate Planning “Blue Screen of Death” with Competent and Ethical Practices.

6. Horn Professor Brian Shannon provided a Legislative and Case Law Update on Mediation and Arbitration as part of a CLE sponsored by the Lubbock County Dispute Resolution Center in Lubbock on September 9, 2017.

7. Horn Professor Brian Shannon will preside over the 1A FAR national conference in Washington, D.C., on September 24-24, 2017. Shannon is currently serving in his third term as President of 1A FAR, which is an organization of the NCAA Faculty Athletics Representatives at the 129 institutions and 10 conferences comprising NCAA Division I’s Football Bowl Subdivision. As part of the program, on September 25, Shannon will moderate a panel discussion entitled, “Enhancing the FAR/AD Relationship.” Panelists include Jack Swarbrick, the Athletic Director (AD) at Notre Dame, Sandy Barbour, the AD at Penn State, Allen Greene, the AD at Buffalo, Judy MacLeod, the Commissioner of Conference USA, and former Congressman Tom McMillan, who is President & CEO of LEAD1 (the national AD association).

8. Horn Professor Brian Shannon will preside at his first meeting as the new Chair of the NCAA Division I’s Legislative Committee in Indianapolis, Indiana, on October 2-3, 2017.

9. Professor Tracy Pearl has been selected as a 2017 recipient of the Lubbock Chamber of Commerce’s “Twenty Under Forty Award.” The Lubbock Chamber will be honoring her and the other award recipients at a banquet on November 9 at the McKenzie-Merket Alumni Center.

10. On September 5, Professor Loewy participated in a Federalist Society debate at the University of Mississippi against Professor Ron Rychlak. The topic was the universal collection of DNA.

11. On September 11, Professor Loewy participated in a Federalist Society debate at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill against Professor Bill Marshall. The topic was the abolition of the electoral college.

12. On September 25, Professor Loewy participated in a Federalist Society debate at the University of Houston against Professor David Crump. The topic was the Texas v. Johnson flag-burning decision.