Author Archives: Morgan Stoddard

Library Training for Fall Faculty Research Assistants

The library will be offering two research training sessions for new faculty research assistants this fall. In this training, research assistants will learn about library services and policies and will gain an introduction to our databases and best research practices.

The sessions will be held at the following dates/times in the Computer Learning Center (CLC) in the Williams Law Library:

  • Friday, September 25, 11:30am-12:30pm
  • Wednesday, September 30, 3:30pm-4:30pm

To attend this training, research assistants simply need to sign up on the library’s website.

Any questions or requests for additional information may be sent to Morgan Stoddard, Research Services Librarian, mms237@law.georgetown.edu, 202-661-6598.

The Bluebook–Twentieth Edition

The new edition of The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation (20th ed. 2015) was published earlier this month, and copies are now available at the Georgetown Law Library!  I know everyone is eager to get their hands on a copy and really, really wants to know — what’s new in this edition?

Well, the twentieth edition is about fifty pages longer than its predecessor and now comprises a full five hundred and sixty pages of torment guidance, so to paraphrase Judge Richard Posner, I haven’t read the entire thing.  However, let’s take a look at some of the changes…

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The preface to the new edition lists many of the significant changes, which include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • The Bluepages (“practitioner” writing section) have been expanded to parallel the rules in the Whitepages (“academic” writing section).  Now, there is a basic Bluepages rule for every Whitepages rule, except for B17 and Rule 17, which are “Court and Litigation Documents” and “Unpublished and Forthcoming Sources,” respectively.
  • Rule 18 includes many changes to citing online sources and should be read carefully before citing materials under the new edition. An important addition that will help preserve information is Rule 18.2.1(d), which encourages the use of Internet archiving tools like perma.cc. and provides guidance on how to include a permanent URL in a citation.  On a related note, The Georgetown Law Library has long supported the preservation of online information with its participation in The Chesapeake Digital Preservation Group and perma.cc.
  • Another amendment to Rule 18 worth noting is that there is no longer a distinction between direct and parallel citations to online sources. All citations are treated as direct, which means not writing “available at” before a URL if a source is available in print and online.
  • Table 13, which used to list abbreviated titles for most U.S. law journals, is now “a more general guide for abbreviating periodicals” and lists abbreviations for common institutional names in Table 13.1 (e.g., Georgetown = “Geo.”) and other common words in Table 13.2 (e.g., Journal = “J.”). To format the proper abbreviation for a journal title, consult T13.1, T13.2, and Table 10 (geographical terms).
  • This edition includes new guidance on foreign and international materials. For example, Rule 21 now has a rule for citing International Monetary Fund materials and Table 2 (citation to foreign materials) has been updated and expanded.

For more detailed information on the new edition, see the useful compilations of changes published by the Warren E. Burger Library at the William Mitchell College of Law and the Pace Law Library.

Need help with The Bluebook and legal citation?  Visit the reference desk and the librarians will be happy to assist you.  Additionally, the Georgetown Law Library has a Bluebook Guide that will be updated later this summer to reflect changes in the twentieth edition.

Image Credit:  MTV/Warner Bros.

Library Training for Summer Faculty Research Assistants

The library will be offering two research training sessions for new faculty research assistants this summer.  In this training, research assistants will learn about library services and policies and will gain an introduction to our databases and best research practices.

The sessions will be held at the following dates/times in the Computer Learning Center (CLC) in the Williams Law Library:

  • Tuesday, May 26, 4:00pm-5:00pm
  • Friday, May 29, 11:00am-12:00pm

Research assistants can register for this training or request additional information by contacting Morgan Stoddard, Research Services Librarian, mms237@law.georgetown.edu.

Spring 2015 Faculty RA Training

The library will be offering two research training sessions for new faculty research assistants this spring. In this training, research assistants will learn about library services and policies and will gain an introduction to our databases and best research practices.

The sessions will be held at the following dates/times in the Computer Learning Center (CLC) in the Williams Law Library:

• Wednesday, February 4, 3:30pm-4:30pm

• Tuesday, February 10, 12:00pm-1:00pm

To register for this training or request additional information, contact Morgan Stoddard, Research Services Librarian, mms237@law.georgetown.edu.

The Ebola Outbreak: A Global Conversation and Resources

The Kennedy Institute of Ethics and the O’Neill Institute for National and Global Health Law at Georgetown University have created a website that provides access to Georgetown scholarship and resources related to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.  The website, The Ebola Outbreak: A Global Conversation and Resources, links to blog posts, articles, and events.

For other resources on bioethics, see the Georgetown Law Library’s Bioethics Research Guide.

Research Training for Fall Faculty RAs

The library will be offering two research training sessions for new faculty research assistants this fall. In this training, research assistants will learn about library services and policies and will gain an introduction to our databases and best research practices.

The sessions will be held at the following dates/times in the Computer Learning Center (CLC) in the Williams Law Library:

• Thursday, September 25, 12:00pm-1:00pm

• Tuesday, October 7, 3:00pm-4:00pm

Space is limited, so sign-up today!

Any questions or requests for additional information may be sent to Morgan Stoddard, Research Services Librarian, mms237@law.georgetown.edu, 202-661-6598.

Summer 2014 Faculty RA Training

The library will be offering two research training sessions for new Georgetown Law faculty research assistants this summer. In this training, research assistants will learn about library services and policies and will gain an introduction to our databases and best research practices.

The sessions will be held at the following dates/times in the Computer Learning Center (CLC) in the Williams Law Library:

  • Thursday, May 22, 11:00am-12:30pm
  • Wednesday, May 28, 5:30pm-7:30pm

Space is limited, so sign-up today!

Any questions or requests for additional information may be sent to Morgan Stoddard, Research Services Librarian, mms237@law.georgetown.edu, 202-661-6598.

Library Training for Faculty Research Assistants

The library will be offering two research training sessions for new faculty research assistants this spring.  In this training, research assistants will learn about library services and policies and will gain an introduction to our databases and best research practices.

The sessions will be held at the following dates/times in the Computer Learning Center (CLC) in the Williams Law Library:

  • Wednesday, February 5, 3:30pm-4:30pm
  • Friday, February 14, 11am-12pm

To attend this training, please sign-up here.

Any questions or requests for additional information may be sent to Morgan Stoddard, Research Services Librarian, mms237@law.georgetown.edu, 202-661-6598.

Monitor Congressional Committees and Hearings with GovTrack

Congress is back in session.  To stay informed about upcoming hearings and other activities of congressional committees, sign up for alerts from GovTrack.  GovTrack can send you an email (daily or weekly) when committee hearings are scheduled or you can receive notifications on the meetings and bills before specific committees.

GovTrack also allows you to track particular members of Congress, bills and resolutions, and votes and recently started offering state legislative tracking.  Visit GovTrack for more information.

For information on other resources that will help you stay informed about what’s happening on the Hill, see the list of current awareness tools in the Georgetown Law Library’s Legislative History Research Guide.

Continental Congress Resources Online

If you are researching the Continental Congress, there are a number of great electronic resources for accessing its materials, some of which are freely available online.

Journals of the Continental Congress
The Journals of the Continental Congress are on HeinOnline and are also available for free on the Library of Congress website A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation: U.S. Congressional Documents and Debates.

Letters of Delegates to Congress
The Letters of Delegates to Congress are also on HeinOnline and A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation.

Papers of the Continental Congress
The Papers of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789, are currently available for free online from Fold3.  

The Papers on this site are a digitized version of the microfilm collection (M247) created by the National Archives and Records Administration. For an overview of this collection, see this guide from the National Archives and Records Administration. 

You can browse these Papers or search by keyword on Fold3.  It can be also very helpful to utilize the Index: Papers of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789, available on HeinOnline, when searching the Papers on Fold3.  The collection is large, and the Index will help you more quickly identify relevant Papers contained therein.  Additionally, since Fold3 provides information on where each document is published in the microfilm collection, you can use the Index to find roll, item, and page numbers and search the Papers on Fold3 using these document identifiers.  Note: It often, but does not always, work to search the Papers on Fold3 using the document identifiers.  If you are not finding a document using the identifiers from the Index, try searching by keyword or subject (from the Index) instead.

Finally, Fold3 also provides access to the collection of Miscellaneous Papers of the Continental Congress (NARA Microfilm Publication M332).

If you need assistance with any of these resources or have other questions about researching the Continental Congress, contact a librarian at the Reference Desk.