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Secondary Sources

Secondary sources criticize, describe, discuss, and summarize the law found in primary law sources. (Primary law includes constitutions, laws, judicial opinions, and regulations.)


Since call numbers group books by subject, you can browse the shelves and see books on similar subjects shelved together.

A Browser's Guide to the Reference Area bookmark shows approximate call numbers for lots of common topics. Since the call number system is the same throughout the library, you can use the bookmark to browse call numbers in the Classified Stacks too.Browser's Guide bookmark

Or use this list of call numbers for study aids.

If you know the call numbers of a couple of relevant books, you can look at the shelves around them to see what's there.

Limits of browsing:

  • You won't see books that are currently checked out or in use.
  • You might miss books that focus on a different jurisdiction. If you browse KFW, you'll see books on Washington State law, but you'll miss the nationally focused books on the same subject in KF.
  • You won't see the general sets (encyclopedias, American Law Reports) that could have something on your topic.

Georgetown's Treatise Finder

West Academic Study Aids

The law library subscribes to a database of study aids and commercial outlines via West Academic with both electronic and audio options.

Topics include 1L courses and common upper class law school courses. The subscription includes popular series such as:

  • Nutshells
  • Flash Cards
  • Legalines
  • ​Concise Hornbooks
  • Black Letter Outlines

Library Catalog

Online Services: Bloomberg, Lexis, Westlaw

Bloomberg Law Bloomberg Law logo, LexisNexis LexisNexis logo, and Westlaw Westlaw logo all have treatises and practice materials.

  • Look for a general listing (e.g., under Secondary Sources).
  • Look for secondary sources listed under a topic (e.g., Criminal Law or Labor & Employment Law) or a jurisdiction (e.g., Washington).

Publishers generally license their treatises to only one of these systems.

Bloomberg Law Bloomberg Law logo has books from Bloomberg BNA and the Practising Law Institute.

LexisNexis LexisNexis logohas books from Lexis Publishing and Matthew Bender.

Westlaw Westlaw logo has books from Thomson Reuters and some other publishers owned by that group.


Research Guides