Research Guides

1L Research Guide

Offers a general strategy for approaching any legal research question; links to online resources for each step in the process; and tips applicable whether you are working on assignments in your Legal Research & Writing or Written & Oral Advocacy classes, matters for a clinical course or externship placement, or client research in a summer associate position.

Administrative Law Sources

Free, official and other online sources, as well as Berkeley Law Library print and online sources, for materials from federal and California executive agencies and administrative bodies.

American Indian Law

A guide to the law of the United States as it pertains to the American Indian. Includes print and microform resources held by the Law Library as well as online databases, texts, and web sites.

Armed Conflict and International Law

Designed to cover research on issues related to international humanitarian law, including law of war and law of armed conflict. Sections include locating international instruments, cases, national law, and more.

Basic & Background Sources for International & Foreign Legal Research

A research guide that focuses on basic and background sources for researching international, foreign, and comparative law topics. Sources include freely available websites as well as subscription databases. Research guides, encyclopedias, dictionaries, and more are suggested for any stage in the research process.


Online and other sources for finding legal briefs from cases filed in state and federal courts. See U.S. Supreme Court tab for information regarding availability of recordings and transcripts of oral arguments.

Business and Legal Aspects of Sports and Entertainment (BLASE)UCB only

HeinOnline's Business and Legal Aspects of Sports and Entertainment (BLASE) database is designed to assist researchers in locating sources relevant to the many issues surrounding these subject areas. Organized into sixteen tabs, each covering a distinct type of material, including legal periodical literature, books, case law, and U.S. federal and state materials. BLASE provides a unique topical arrangement for the documents within each tab. The treatment of sports-related material is comprehensive, while the approach to entertainment-related material focuses on movies, music, television, and theater.

Business Research

A guide to business information and an annotated list of the best electronic resources for the legal researcher available at Cal.

California Administrative Law (UC Hastings)

UC Hastings Law Library Research Guide provides direction on finding and updating current California regulations as well as finding superseded regulations and regulatory history.

California Legislative History Research

A guide to doing a California legislative history at the Berkeley Law Library.

California Legislative History: Basic Online Research

The California State Library's guide to researching California legislative history using free, online resources.

California Practice Materials

Examples of guides and treatises available from some major publishers of California legal material, designed to give an idea of the scope of information available.

California Propositions

How to find text, analyses, arguments, status, history, and case law relating to California ballot initiatives, referenda and recall elections, including information on attempted ballot measures that failed to qualify for the ballot.

Compiling a Federal Legislative History: A Beginner's Guide (Library of Congress)

"Compiling a federal legislative history may seem intimidating at first glance, but it does not have to be. In this research guide, we will walk you through the steps you can use to compile your own federal legislative history."

Consumer Protection Law

Consumer protection law covers a number of different interrelated subject areas including bankruptcy, commercial law, real estate, debtor-creditor and privacy law intended to protect consumers. It is governed by both federal and state laws as well as a complex array of state and federal agencies and regulations. This guide introduces the major federal and California laws governing consumer protection, as well as the federal and California agencies enforcing and regulating those laws.

Court Rules & Procedures

Sources for state and federal local court rules, rules of court, etc.

Docket Information and Court Filings

Tips for searching free and fee-based court-sponsored or subscription resources for viewing docket sheets and for downloading underlying, filed documents from federal and state cases.

Empirical Research (Fordham University School of Law)

From Fordham University Law Library, this guide provides information on where to find statistics and datasets, by topic, both legal and non legal resources are included as are resources for statistical data analysis.

Employment Law Guide (U.S. Dept. of Labor)

The Guide describes the major statutes and regulations administered by the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) that affect businesses and workers and is designed mainly for those needing "hands-on" information to develop wage, benefit, safety and health, and nondiscrimination policies for businesses.

Environmental Law Basic Resources

Basic resources for finding cases, regulations, statutes, and secondary sources.

Fifty State Statutory Surveys

How to find compilations of state statutory law on specific topics.

Financial Accounting News (Bloomberg BNA)Berkeley Law only

Guidance on emerging, evolving, and complex issues relating to accounting rules and principles, financial statements and disclosures, management control and analysis, auditing principles and standards, and accounting practice and responsibility. Registration and individual password required.

Finding Freely Available Resources for Research

A starting point for students, faculty, alumni, and members of the public who want free remote access to online research materials. Many commercial databases and electronic journals provided by the libraries at UC Berkeley, including the Law Library, are limited to computers in the UC Berkeley campus network. This is due to our license agreements with the vendors of these electronic resources.

Finding Library-Licensed eBooks From the Main Library

The Main Library on the UCB Campus buys and subscribes to both individual eBook titles and collections of eBooks available to Law School students and faculty. Those eBooks appear on various platforms--such as Springer, ebrary, EBSCO, and Safari--but you can find eBook titles using Oskicat, the Main Library's catalog.

Free & Low-Cost Legal Research

There are countless free (or low-cost) legal research resources available online. The trick is narrowing down the available information to find reliable and up-to-date information. This guide provides links and suggestions for free and low-cost legal research resources, including: free federal, California, and secondary resources; low-cost legal databases; and other resources and guides.

How to Get Published: A Guide to Human Rights and Social Justice Journals

This guide is aimed at undergraduate students, law and other graduate students, and recent alumni who wish to publish their research related to human rights and social justice. The guide provides information on preemption checking, picking a publication, the mechanics of the submission process, and more information.

Immigration Executive Orders

Provides information and links to resources on researching President Trump's executive orders, and immigration law generally.


A legal aid 501(c)(3) organization founded at Harvard, ImmigrationHelp provides free legal help for work permits, DACA, and citizenship. They also have a comprehensive database of educational guides that explain immigration process.

Intellectual Property Patents & Trade Secrets Practice Center (Bloomberg BNA)Berkeley Law only

Provides the full text of all decisions reported in United States Patents Quarterly from 1929 to the present. . Provides news, analysis, finding aids, treatises, laws and regulations regarding patents. Includes access to selected international agreements and treaties. Registration and individual password required.

International Business Transactions

This IBT guide covers researching national laws related to international business transactions.  It covers specific topics: arbitration, commercial law, competition/antitrust, labor, securities regulation, and more.

International Commercial Arbitration

The guide includes information on locating treaties, awards, national laws, and other information.  Includes both print and electronic sources, including databases like KluwerArbitration.

International Human Rights

This guide to international human rights research covers strategy and sources, both print and electronic.

International Organizations

Guide to researching international organizations, including the UN, EU, ILO and more.

Issues in Legal Education

A selection of recent important studies, reports, scholarship, news, etc., relating to several facets of legal education. Topics include ABA and California Bar developments, audiences pursuing legal education, student identity groups and law journals, global partnerships, institutes and research centers, the economics of law school, and mentoring.

JD Writing Requirement

This guide provides students with resources and information that support them in completing the Berkeley Law writing requirement.

Legal Advice and Referrals

Suggestions for self help services, finding a lawyer, and locating organizations that provide specialized legal help.

Legal Research and Writing: Introduction to Law Library Resources

A brief survey of basic legal and non-legal research tools, including print and online aids to writing legal documents, both scholarly and practical.

Lexis & Westlaw Search Tips & Tricks

For all you need to know to start using smart, logical, sophisticated Terms & Connectors on the major legal research services. Includes examples with a comparison of results.

LLM Survival Guide

Library resources and good starting points for basic legal research and writing skills, geared to LLM candidates at Berkeley Law.

Local Government Legal Resources

Suggested sources of information pertaining to municipal or county legal research, with a special emphasis on California local government.


This guide is designed to assist the scholar or student seeking access to subscription news sources for current and historical news.

Open Source & Low Cost Law Textbooks: OER Tools

Guide for faculty wishing to use or create their own Open Educational Resources (OERs).

Preemption Checking: Checklist

A guide for student authors to make sure the paper you’re writing hasn’t been written by someone else.

Prep for Your Clerkship InterviewUCB only

Resources and tips for finding out about biographical and career history, caseload and docket profiles, and jurisdictional facts about a specific judge.

Prep for Your Law Firm Interview

A selection of library and other research resources to help you get an overview of a law firm, attorney, or judge's organization and practice, in preparation for interviewing for a summer associate, intern/extern, or entry-level position.

Refugee Law

This guide covers researching refugee law, including print and electronic sources. There is a section on U.S. immigration research, as well as a section on locating foreign law.

Refugee Law: Country Conditions/Country of Origin Research

Research guide focusing on country conditions and country of origin (COI) research. Includes government reports, IGO and NGO documents, news and more.

State Legislative History Research Guides (Indiana University School of Law Library, Bloomington)

An index of state legislatures and online legislative history research guides for all fifty states hosted by University of Indiana's law school.

Student Computing Guide

A guide to computing at Berkeley Law. Covers laptops, the lab, printing, scanning, and other miscellaneous computer-related concerns.

Study Aids

Study aids, including Nutshells, Examples & Explanations, Understanding Series and Outlines are introductory texts that help you prepare for class and exams. They complement your own reading, class preparation and outlining, explaining various topics of law in a straightforward, narrative manner.

Tax Management Weekly Report (Bloomberg BNA)Berkeley Law only

Provides timely information on federal legislative, regulatory, judicial, and policy developments from the Treasury Department, Internal Revenue Service, the courts, and Congress. International developments, as well as developments in the U. S. states, are also covered. The Report provides articles on new and emerging areas of taxation. Individual registration and password required.

The United Nations

Both print and electronic sources for researching basic UN legal issues, documents and publications.

United Nations Treaties

This guide provides detailed instructions for how to find treaties and associated treaty actions in the United Nations' Treaty Collection and other websites.