Call Numbers: The Basics

by PSL Law Library 12. September 2013 14:33


Call numbers are derived from a classification system used by libraries to organize materials into classes (subjects) so like materials are shelved together.  Our Library uses the Library of Congress Classification System which is often used by academic libraries in the United States and other countries.  You may be more familiar with the Dewey Decimal Classification System, most often used by public libraries.  You can find call numbers on the spine or cover (lower left corner) of the material.  Call numbers also appear in the results list and item records in the catalog.  If an item in the catalog doesn’t have a call number then it’s an online resource.

The call number can be narrowed into very specific subjects:
a. K is for Law
b. KF is for Law in the United States
c. KF801 is for Contract Law in the United States
d. KF801.A7 is for Casebooks on Contract Law in the United States
e. KF801.Z9 is for Study Aids on Contract Law in the United States 

Now that you know what a call number is you can use this information to locate materials in any academic library.  Find study aids on Contracts in any collection (or library) by looking for items with the call number KF801.Z9.  Many call numbers contain the publishing date to help ensure you select the latest edition.  Glannon Guide to Contracts, KF801.Z9 S49 2013 was published in 2013.  Finally, find a greater number of materials on a subject by looking for materials with similar call numbers.

*For more information on call numbers please refer to the library maps located at the Research Desk.

New Arrivals!

by Lynn 9. August 2013 13:37


Each month there are New Arrivals in the library. Check out

the ebooks, print titles, and latest editions of study aids that

have been added to our collection in August. 


Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin: Comprehensive Research Guide

by Michelle Vallance 5. July 2013 16:46

If you were following the recent affirmative action case decided by the U.S. Supreme Court in Fisher v. University of Texas at Austin, then you might be interested in a research guide compiled by the UT Law Library.

The guide provides full-text access to all of the pleadings in the case, from its original filing in the W.D. of Texas. In addition, you can find links to significant scholarly articles on affirmative action, as well as a news archive detailing the history of the Fisher case.

This is a terrific resource, especially if you are interested in writing your AWR on affirmative action!

Human Rights Writing Competition for Law Students and Recent Grads: Conference on Violence Against Women

by Yvette Brown 3. July 2013 10:10


Human Rights Writing Competition for Law Students & Recent Grads

Conference on Violence Against Women—Boston, MA

Posted: 02 Jul 2013 04:22 PM PDT

"The Program on Human Rights and the Global Economy (PHRGE) at Northeastern University School of Law announces a writing competition for current JD Students and 2012 and 2013 JD graduates in the United States. The organizers are looking for papers that address human rights issues or human rights-based approaches to economic and social justice. Papers addressing domestic violence from a human rights perspective will receive special consideration within this competition. The winner of the writing competition will receive $500, as well as an invitation to attend the PHRGE 2013 Institute in Boston, MA, Nov. 7-8, 2013. By attending this conference, the winner will have the opportunity to present his or her paper to other institute participants. The 2013 PHRGE Institute is co-sponsored by the Due Diligence Project and will explore states obligations to end violence against women. For details see PHRGE Student Writing Competition Announcement."

From:  Legal Scholarship Blog

Justice Kagan: Master of the Topic Sentence

by Yvette Brown 1. July 2013 14:55


“She is a master of the topic sentence (“A trip back in time begins to show why”) and the stylish dig (“wrong, wrong, and wrong again”). Yet what puts her in a class by herself is her combination of down-to-earth writing and the ingredients essential to influential opinions: conceptual insight, penetrating legal analysis and argumentative verve.”

For more highlights of Justice Kagan’s writing style see The Talented Justice Kagan by Lincoln Caplan in the New York Times.   

To add more style and grace to your own prose or to join the ranks of the Masters of the Topic Sentence consult one of the many writing resources PSL Law Library provides.

For example, Anne Enquist and Laurel Currie Oates provide helpful tips and advice on the art of writing a good topic sentence in Just Writing : Grammar, Punctuation, And Style For The Legal Writer.

Topic Sentence Example From Just Writing:

“The court extended these protections in Rosenbloom, holding that plaintiffs in a defamation action would have to prove actual malice if the published statements were of public or general interest.  Rosenbloom v. Metromendia, 403 U.S. 29 (1971).”

As Enquist and Oates note, the above topic sentence “introduces the point the paragraph will make.”  It also “demonstrates an excellent method for writing topic sentences that introduce a new case:  It begins with a transition that relates the point from the new case to the previous discussion and then follows with a paraphrase of the holding."

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