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Study Aids Available at the Library: Home

This research guide lists study aids available at the UC Hastings Law library

What Study Guides Are Available

Free Online Access to West Study Guides for Current Hastings Students:
Hastings students have FREE ACCESS to West study guides.  Hastings students can view these guides online without an account, or by creating an account allowing users to customize the guides with highlighting and saved notes.  These include:

4th Floor Library Circulation Desk:
The library has a number of resources and study aids that may be helpful to students. Study aids kept at the Circulation Desk can be checked out for two hours. Below is a brief description of the types of study aids available, followed by a list of study aids organized by subject. This list is current but is not comprehensive. For other materials available in the library, check the Hastings online catalog. Earlier editions of the study guides are on the 5th and 6th floors and can be borrowed for four weeks.

Also consider taking a look at the course specific outlines prepared by other Hastings students and published on the web by ASUCH, and HPILF. (NOTE: Unlike the books mentioned on the list below, you'll have to double-check the accuracy of these student-generated outlines.)

Hornbooks and Treatises:

• A hornbook is a one-volume statement of the law on a particular subject. It can be a great place to find a clear explanation of a point of law. Hastings students have FREE online access to West Hornbooks.  Hastings students can view West Hornbooks online without an account, or by creating an account allowing users to add saved highlighting and notes.The library keeps hornbooks on most subjects at the 5th floor stacks by call number in their respective legal subject area. [NOTE: Many professors have preferences for specific hornbooks. Check with your professor for recommended authors.] While hornbooks are useful for general principles of law, they are only published every few years and do not cover recent changes in the law.
• A treatise is a comprehensive, multi-volume treatment of a particular area of law. They are typically updated several times per year.  Most major treatises are shelved in the 4th floor research alcove. Others are available at the stacks.

Study Aids:
  • The Center for Computer Assisted Legal Instruction (CALI) produces multiple-choice lessons in almost every subject area with answers and explanations. The lessons are available online or in CD format. Hastings students can obtain a free CALI CD at the Reference Desk and download the exercises to a laptop. Alternatively, students can obtain an authorization code from a reference librarian, which will allow online access to all of the CALI exercises at
  • There is a set of Gilbert Law Summaries on audio CD covering basic first year topics (torts, contracts, property, criminal law, civil procedure, constitutional law, and exam taking.) They are available at our Media collection, 4th floor next to the newspapers & magazine area.
  • The library has all of the titles in the Nutshell Series. Nutshells are West-published short narratives about a specific area of law and typically cover the material emphasized in a semester-length course. One particularly interesting title for students thinking about going to law school and for first-year law students is Introduction to the Study and Practice of Law. Check the library catalog for the location and availability of each Nutshell title.
  • Many volumes of the Emanuel Outlines and Emanuel Crunchtime series, published by Wolters Kluwer, have been added to our collection in Fall 2015. They contain useful outlines for legal courses.
  • The books in the Examples and Explanations Series published by Aspen Law & Business provide clear overviews of approximately twenty areas of law. Each title contains hypotheticals with helpful answers and explanations. The most recent editions of these titles are kept at the Circulation Desk.
  • The library also has several titles in the Understanding series. The most recent editions of these titles are kept at the Circulation Desk.
  • Roadmap Law Course Outlines covering fifteen subjects have been quite popular in the past, but many of the books in this series have not been updated by the publisher for over 5 – 10 years. These books include a short summary outline of the law and a detailed outline correlated to various casebooks.

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