Entering 1L Students: The Law Library’s Selective Summer Browsing List

We certainly do not expect you to read all of the books noted below. Some of them probably won’t make much sense until you start classes. However, you can still flip through them this summer to get a feel of what law school is about. All of these books can be found in and borrowed from the law library.

1L of a Ride

1L of a Ride : A Well-Traveled Professor’s Roadmap to Success in the First Year of Law School by Cecil C. Humphreys.
This book provides practical advice on how to succeed in law school both academically and emotionally from perspectives of an experienced law professor and anecdotes from former students. The author claims
“. . . to provide new students with a candid, beginning-to-end roadmap to the first year of law school, along with the navigational and other tools to complete the sojourn scholastically accomplished and emotionally intact.”


Getting to MaybeGetting to Maybe: How to Excel on Law School Exams by Richard Michael Fischl and Jeremy Paul.
Law school test questions are different from most all other examinations. As such, there may be more than one correct answer, hence the title of the book, Getting to Maybe. Mostly it’s the analysis that matters on law school essay examinations. The authors do an excellent job in explaining the importance of legal analysis over the mere “correct answer.” They focus on making sure the reader understands legal analysis when taking law school tests.


Reading Like a LawyerReading Like a Lawyer: Time-Saving Strategies for Reading Law Like an Expert by Ruth Ann McKinney.
As law students, you will be reading more than ever. Good reading is not innate, but a skill that can be learned. The author’s purpose for the book is
“. . . to teach you . . . how to read law-related material as efficiently, effectively, and powerfully as possible.”



Legal Writing in Plain EnglishLegal Writing in Plain English: A Text with Exercises by Bryan A. Garner.
The author has taught an accelerated course at Texas Tech School of Law during the past few summers. Like taking law school tests, legal writing often requires an altogether different style of writing than you have done in the past. We encourage you to browse the book that way you will know what to expect and can get in the right frame of mind before beginning classes in the fall.



Law School ConfidentialLaw School Confidential: A Complete Guide to the Law School Experience: by Students, for Students by Robert H. Miller.
The author presents a guide for law students, and discusses the application process, financing, preparation for classes, curriculum, honor codes, competition, recruiting, and other related topics.

Summer Services

Summer-border-clipartSummer is here and so are long hot lazy days… unless you are enrolled in summer school!

If you are here for the summer taking classes, studying for the bar exam, or working locally then you need to know some of the services that are available to you from the Law Library.

If you are here you can still check out a study carrel.  Please contact David Kelly at the Circulation desk, 806-742-3957, and he can help you get a carrel for the summer.

The Law Library is open during the summer (with reduced hours) and we still provide the same services we had during the regular semester; friendly staff, medicine, study aids, etc.  When you need a break from studying please come by and chat for a little bit.  Click here to see when we are open.

You also have access to various databases over the summer even if you are working!  Alyson Drake has written a post outlining what database services are available.

We hope that you have a great summer no matter what you are doing!  If you are here in Lubbock, remember, we are here for you and want to be of service!

Summer Electronic Database Access

Wondering whether you can use Lexis, Westlaw, or Bloomberg at your summer jobs?

LexisAdvanceLexis Advance:

Your law school log-in will allow you unlimited access to all legal content and news in Lexis all summer for both academic and professional purposes.  Some employers may give you a Lexis ID of their own to use for work purposes.

Your law school log-in will remain active all summer without any action from you.  You will also continue to earn points during the summer.


Students automatically get FULL access all year-round (180 hours per month). You do not have to do anything to gain access over the summer.

Please be reminded that the academic use restriction applies to summer access. Permissible uses include:

  • Summer coursework
  • Research assistant assignments
  • Law Review or Journal research
  • Moot Court research
  • Non-Profit work
  • Clinical work
  • Internship/Externship sponsored by the school

bbergBloomberg Law:

Bloomberg Law offers students unlimited and unrestricted access to your Bloomberg Law accounts for any purpose, anytime, anywhere, including for use over the summer.

Legislative Insight Featured Spotlight: Legislative Process

This is the second post in a three-part series spotlighting Legislative Insight database features. For this post, we’re looking at the “Legislative Process” tab, available off the menu bar (shown below).

Leg Proc 3.1The legislative process is broken down into seven steps:

  1. A bill is drafted and introduced (either through the House or Senate)
  2. A bill is referred to a committee and subject to hearings and markup
  3. A committee votes to report a bill
  4. A bill goes to the floor
  5. The bill goes to conference
  6. The bill goes to the president to sign or veto
  7. The enacted law is printed and codified

Each step is explained in detail by clicking the orange information tab (shown below). In the example below, the Legislative Process page breaks down the intricacies of when a bill is referred to a committee.

Leg Proc 3.3 The Legislative Process page on Legislative Insight demystifies the law making process by providing a step-by-step guide in simplified language.

Access to ProQuest’s Legislative Insight database is available through the Texas Tech Law Library website under the Electronic Databases tab.

End of the Semester Library Resources

The spring semester is almost over; there are only a couple of weeks left of school and then finals!  This is always a busy and stressful time, however the Law Library is here to help you finish the semester on a positive note.  Here are some items the library has available to you to help you through the end of the semester.

west academic studyaidsThe Law Library has study guides to check out!  We have all different types of study aides that can be checked out or used online (WestAcademic Study Aids).  There are books, cds, and flash cards available for you to use.

aspirin collageThe Law Library also has a supply of items to help you cope better during your studies.  The library has ear plugs, aspirin, ibuprofen, antacids, and bandaids.  The library also has other items to help you like phone chargers located throughout the library, disposable earbuds, laptop chargers, and various projector chargers.

One of our most helpful resources is our study rooms.  We have 5 rooms available and they can be reserved online here.  If you have problems reserving your study room, contact the Circulation Desk (806-742-3957) and staff can help you reserve your space.

study room collage

Don’t forget to reserve a laptop if you need one for a final exam.  If your final has the option for laptops you will receive an email notifying you with instructions on how to reserve a laptop.  Please, don’t forget the laptops are first come-first reserved, so make sure you reserve your laptop early!

circulation staff

Our last resource is our best, and that is our staff!!  If you have any questions or need help, please come by and talk to one of our circulation desk staff members and they will be glad to help you get the information you need.


Good luck on your finals and enjoy the summer break!!!

GPO to Digitize all Issues of the Federal Register

federalregisterThe U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) recently announced that it plans to make every issue of the Federal Register digitally available to the public. Approximately 14,587 individual issues, which go back to 1936, will be digitized. The digitization is expected to be completed in 2016. Currently, digital versions dating from 1994 to the present are available on GPO’s Federal Digital System (FDsys). The Federal Register is updated daily by 6 a.m. and is published Monday through Friday, except Federal holidays. (Source: Federal Depository Library Program).


Publish in Open Access Law Reviews for Higher Scholarly Impact

The Law Librarians blog posted about a paper by James Donovan, Carol Watson, and Caroline Osborne on SSRN called The Open Access Advantage for American Law Reviews.

imgresFrom the article:
In answer to law faculty questions about how participation in an open access repository will affect the works’ impact, the present research offers a definitive reply. When looking at citation by other law reviews to all the author’s work, the averaged increase in citations in flagship journals is 53%. In general, half of these cites will be dispensed in the first six years after the article’s publication. OA articles will attract more attention earlier in the lifecycle of the publication, and endure longer on the intellectual stage.

For authors, the message is clear: The open access advantage is real, sizable, and consistent. The minimal effort to upload an article onto an OA platform such as SSRN or a school’s repository pays rich dividends in the currency of subsequent citations in law reviews and court decisions.

From the abstract:
Articles available in open access formats enjoy an advantage in citation by subsequent law review works of 53%. For every two citations an article would otherwise receive, it can expect a third when made freely available on the Internet. This benefit is not uniformly spread through the law school tiers. Higher tier journals experience a lower OA advantage (11.4%) due to the attention such prestigious works routinely receive regardless of the format. When focusing on the availability of new scholarship, as compared to creating retrospective collections, the aggregated advantage rises to 60.2%. While the first tier advantage rises to 16.8%, the mid-tiers skyrocket to 89.7%. The fourth tier OA advantage comes in at 81.2%.

Citations of legal articles by courts is similarly impacted by OA availability. While the 15-year aggregate advantage is a mere 9.5%, new scholarship is 41.4% more likely to be cited by a court decision if it is available in open access format.

Make sure to upload to SSRN for discoverability. And upload your article to your institutional repository for good measure, too.