Introducing Mandy Lee

Mandy LeeThis week a new class of students is beginning their education at Chicago-Kent. Our newest research librarian, Mandy Lee, arrived on August 21st  along with you, and looks forward to getting to know you.

Mandy came to Chicago-Kent from the University of Nebraska College of Law. She also served as a reference assistant at the University of Illinois College of Law Library, and as a teaching assistant for faculty in the UIUC graduate library/information science program.

Mandy has experience as an extern at the Circuit Court of Cook County, a law clerk at the Chicago Housing Authority, and an intern at UNESCO in Bangkok. She was a volunteer in Chicago at the Domestic Violence Legal Clinic and the Illinois Human Rights Commission. As if that weren’t enough, Mandy has been a real estate broker associate at Baird & Warner.

What were you doing before you came to Chicago-Kent?

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End of Summer Reading – Bryan Stevenson, Just Mercy

Just Mercy coverThe summer’s almost over – time to read one last book on the beach.  If you’re looking for inspirational reading about the great power of the legal system, check out Bryan Stevenson’s memoir, Just Mercy.  Stevenson is a death-row attorney whose stories about working with inmates are fascinating and inspiring.

Stevenson is the founder and executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative (EJI) in Montgomery, Alabama.  In addition to working on death penalty cases, the EJI promotes racial justice, fights mass incarceration, and helps children in prison.

AALL Keynote – Social Recap

Stevenson was the keynote speaker at this year’s American Association of Law Libraries Annual Meeting. Librarians at this national conference were excited to read his book and share quotes from his keynote address on twitter: Continue reading

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Chicago-Kent at CALI Conference 2017

Chicago-Kent librarians will be traveling to speak at the 2017 annual CALI conference this week in Phoenix, AZ. Catch up on their topics here, find links to watch the livestream, or and follow along online via twitter at the #CALIcon17 hashtag if you want to join the conversation remotely!

The “Conference for Law School Computing” will be hosted at the Arizona State University Sandra Day O’Connor School of Law from June 14-15. Each year it includes a wide variety of speakers representing law schools and the legal tech companies that support us from around the country.

All sessions are being live streamed and recorded this year. The session pages will have a link for the live stream that will be replaced after the conference with a link to the recorded video when those are available.

2017 Chicago-Kent Presenters

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Library Services for Alumni

Alumni Card Back

This past weekend, Chicago-Kent was proud to send yet another class of students into the world of legal practice, armed with the skills and tools that they will need to succeed.  The library would like to congratulate all newly-minted alumni on their achievement. We would also remind them that we are still here if you need us.

Has your new boss asked you to find a regulation, and you can’t quite remember where to look?  Contact the reference desk!  Did you forget where to find a form for a contract you need to draft?  There’s a guide for that!  Just want to chat about the good old days in library?  We’d love to hear from you!

If there is anything that the library can help you with, just know that we are still here for alumni just as we are for current students.  Check out the alumni services page of our website.

Congratulations, Graduates!

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2017 Summer and Post-Graduation Access to Westlaw, Lexis & Bloomberg Law

Westlaw, Lexis, Bloomberg Logos


Here is a summary of the access that will be offered during the summer of 2017:


1Ls & 2Ls: You can use Thomson Reuters products, including Westlaw and Practical Law, over the summer for non-commercial research. You can turn to these resources to gain understanding and build confidence in your research skills, but you cannot use them in situations where you are billing clients. Examples of permissible uses include the following:

  • Summer coursework
  • Research assistant assignments
  • Law review or journal research
  • Moot Court research
  • Non-profit work
  • Clinical work
  • Externship sponsored by the school

If you are working for a firm or a for-profit organization you should use the Westlaw account provided by your employer.

You do not have to do anything to gain access to these tools over the summer. If you have any questions, please contact your Thomson Reuters Academic Account Manager.

Grads: Graduates should register for Grad Elite access through a pop-up that you will see when you log in.  Don’t see the pop-up?  Try logging out and logging back in.  Grad Elite lasts until the end of November.  Grads will have access to Westlaw and Practical law for non-commercial use for 60 hours per month.



  • Lexis Summer Access – All students have Full Access with their law school ID all summer. This includes BOTH academic use and work use (no restrictions). No need to register – full access is automatically provided.
  • Lexis IDs: Spring 2017 graduates have full access to Lexis via their law school IDs through December 31, 2017. This ID also grants them access to the Graduate Home Page (detailed below).
  • Spring Graduate Home Page: On June 30, Spring graduates’ view of the Law School Home Page will switch from its current appearance to the “graduate view”. This new view will provide helpful information for your careers and job search.

Bloomberg Law

Bloomberg Law offers students unrestricted access over the summer and for 6 months following graduation.  No special registration is required.


If you have any questions regarding access to any of these services, please feel free to contact our account representatives:

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Changes to Bloomberg Law and Westlaw

Have you recently logged in to Bloomberg Law or Westlaw, only to find that your favorite tool or resource is not where you left it?

Good news–you’re not losing your mind!

Westlaw and Bloomberg Law have recently undergone significant face lifts to their interfaces that will affect how you interact with them.  Here are some of the key features that you’ll want to be aware of in both platforms.

Image result for westlaw logo

The primary changes in Westlaw will affect the way you use secondary sources (you are making frequent and effective use of secondary sources…right?!).  In the past, clicking the “Secondary Sources” link from Westlaw’s homepage would bring users to a page where that encouraged them to first choose the type of secondary source that they were looking for (Texts & Treatises, Journals & Law Reviews, etc.), and/or by jurisdiction.  This main landing page for secondary sources has now been redesigned to put all of these filters on the left side of the screen.  While the default in Westlaw is to search across all secondary sources at once, these filters allow users to think critically about the type of resource that they are most interested in, and should be used efficiently to tailor your search and filter out unwanted results.

Westlaw now provides users with several different ways to find a particular publication:

Since we encourage students to use secondary sources early and often in the legal research process, learning how to navigate this new interface will be crucial for success.  For additional information about Westlaw’s freshly designed secondary sources interface, see their helpful guides here and here.


Image result for bloomberg law logo

The changes you will see in Bloomberg Law when you log in are considerably more substantial than what we saw in Westlaw.  Bloomberg Law has essentially revamped their entire interface.  Bloomberg has changed the way that its search and navigation functions operate, with an eye towards increased speed and efficiency of content retrieval.

The most noticeable change to Bloomberg Law is the navigation menu that appears on the left side of the homepage.  This is where you will be able to access most of the content contained within Bloomberg Law.  This menu will follow you around the site as you navigate to different pages, so if you’re ever in doubt as to where something is, remember that you can always find this navigation panel.

Also of note is an increased efficiency in the content that is displayed in Bloomberg Law’s advanced search bar.  Bloomberg Law has made it easier to find pages and resources within the system, simply by typing keywords into the search bar and viewing suggestions.  These include links to the popular Practice Centers within Bloomberg Law, as well as links to treatises and primary materials related to the keywords.

Using Bloomberg Law is truly a new experience since the redesign.  It is worth exploring the new interface to determine how you can integrate these new features into your workflow.  For a complete tour of Bloomberg Law’s new features, we encourage you to watch this explanatory video.

As always, there is no substitute for hands-on experience, so we would suggest test driving the new Bloomberg Law and Westlaw interfaces for yourself to begin familiarizing yourself with where your favorite tools and resources now reside, and how they work.

As always, you can always come speak with Chicago-Kent’s helpful research librarians with any questions about how these new interfaces work!

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Online Word Guide for Formatting Appellate Briefs

Word 2016Need some help formatting your appellate brief?  Emily Barney and Debbie Ginsberg are around during the day on Thursday and Friday.

If you need help in the evenings or weekends, we’ve collected online materials – guides, videos, sample documents, and handouts – to help make formatting your brief in Word as straightforward as possible.

Word for Law School Library Guide

Need assistance after hours or over the weekend? This online guide has information and videos to help you:

Handout for Table of Authorities & Page Numbers

If your brief is written and you’ve styled it to create your Table of Contents, the last step is sorting out your page numbers for each section and marking your citations for your Table of Authority are usually the last steps.

This  handout is designed to help you verify each step is working as planned (print directly from Google Drive here)


Need to run a last-minute check on your document to look for and fix hard-to-find errors, from abbreviations you forgot to define to basic BlueBook errors?  PerfectIt works only with Windows, but you can find it on the PCs in the lab in the Library.

If you have a Windows computer, you can download a trial here.


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Design in the Law: Jury Instructions Collaborative Workshop

Earlier this semester, Professor Nancy Marder and Professor Tomoko Ichikawa organized a collaborative faculty workshop for Chicago-Kent College of Law and IIT’s Institute of Design. The workshop considered the problem of jury instructions in the legal field and how design strategies could be applied to work towards effective solutions.

Speaking at the Faculty Workshop for Chicago-Kent College of Law and the Institute of Design, these faculty members discussed issues with jury instructions and strategies each discipline might bring to a problem like this one.

Professor Marder noted the purpose, use, and specific problems with jury instructions. She also described methods that have been used to try to solve those problems and some of the major challenges to enacting changes.

Professor Tomoko Ichikawa shared processes that the design school uses to address this type of issue. Faculty from both schools offered questions and suggestions in an interactive portion that lead to a discussion of what larger issues might need to be taken into account and how formal design approaches could be misused if not well understood.  Continue reading

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Coming Up: ABA Techshow 2017 (Mar. 15-18)

ABA Techshow 2017

Now, more than ever, it’s important to understand legal technology, which can make lawyers more efficient, connect them more closely with clients – or eliminate legal jobs. With new technologies introduced every day – not to mention an ethical requirement to understand these technologies – how can lawyers and law students keep up?  (See Rule 1.1, Comment 8.)

ABA hosts an annual Techshow in Chicago that provides one of the best opportunities for students to engage with emerging legal technologies hands on.  The Techshow runs from March 15 -18 at Hilton Chicago.  The conference will feature dozens of one-hour sessions on all kinds of legal technologies – from practical tips for using Microsoft Office, to digital security, to favorite websites and mobile apps.

Students can register to attend all of these sessions for only $100 (a great bargain).  This year, for the first time, the ABA Techshow will feature an academic track which will cover issues focusing on law schools and law students.

If you don’t have time to attend all of the sessions, the free vendor showcase is open on Thursday and Friday. You can stop by any time for as long as you like.  The vendor showcase is a great way to learn about new legal technologies and services in an exhibit hall featuring more than 100 companies.  You can see live demos of legal tech systems and equipment, and pick up free pens and a few other useful gadgets.  The Techshow is also a good opportunity to learn more about alternative jobs available in the legal tech sector.

Several of us will attend, and we hope to see you there, too!

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What we did over break – Librarians during the intersession

During the recent intersession, your librarians did not rest: we were active in several intersession courses, teaching research, explaining technology, and documenting your classes for social media.

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