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Legal Research

LSP 120

Legal Research

LSP 120

Course Description

Prerequisite: ENG 111 or OAT 151 with a "C" or better, and LSP 115 with a minimum grade of "C". Develops legal research techniques for both state and federal case law, statutes and administrative regulations. Emphasizes basic legal reasoning and writing skills for logical, organized problem solving. Familiarizes students with the most frequently used reference materials as well as online, commercially available legal databases including development of search queries. Credit may be earned in LAS 120 or LSP 120 but not both. (22.5-0)

Outcomes and Objectives

Produce an academic research composition.

Objectives:

  • Locate information using a variety of search tools and methods including library sources.
  • Select source material appropriate to the writing context.
  • Integrate his/her own opinions with various source points of view.
  • Quote, paraphrase, and summarize accurately.
  • Document sources in conventional style with parenthetical references in text.

Evaluate information to reach a conclusion.

Objectives:

  • Access and utilize a variety of information resources.
  • Develop search strategies.
  • Identify information needs, evaluate information resources and content, and determine if the information source is suitable for needs.
  • Properly cite the most common sources used in legal research.
  • Begin research for reports or other projects in a discipline.
  • Understand the ethics of acting upon information (i.e., plagiarism, copyright).

Practice researching basic legal issues using the law library.

Objectives:

  • Be familiar with the resources available in the typical law library.
  • Practice researching.
  • Practice case analysis.
  • Practice comparing and contrasting cases to resolve issues.