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Legal Research


Welcome to the Henry Whittemore Library Legal Research LibGuide! 

Please feel free to contact a librarian at any time during your research process.

Primary and Secondary Sources in Legal Research

Legal research can include the use of both primary and secondary sources.  Primary sources are official pronouncements of governmental lawmakers.  Examples of primary sources include court decisions, statutes, and regulations that influence legal doctrine.  Secondary sources are works that discuss, explain, or analyze legal doctrine, but are not actual laws.  Examples of secondary sources include: treatises, hornbooks, restatements and practice manuals.


Legal Primary Sources

Legal Secondary Sources

  • Court decisions
  • Treatises
  • Statutes
  • Hornbooks
  • Regulations
  • Restatements


  • Practice manuals


  • Law reviews from academic journals

How to Login if You are Off-Campus

FSU's Whittemore Library requires that users who are off-campus authenticate through Blackboard.  Blackboard accounts are set up through Blackboard, not the library, so while we will help as much as possible to get you onto our databases from off-campus, sometimes we may have to refer you back to Blackboard or Information Technology to get your account set-up properly.  Below we have included links for how to get to the ITS Help Desk if you need assistance.

Links for Students

Frequently used links.

Contact the Library

Circulation Desk
(Renewing, ILL, Checkin/Checkout)

Reference Desk
(Database help, Using materials)