Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Alternatives to Rosetta Stone

Want to learn another language? Or brush up on your high school French? Maybe you’d like to travel (once you graduate), or, maybe having foreign language skills may prove useful in other ways.

The possibility of making a career in international law is greatly enhanced by knowledge of a foreign language…or two. Law students can take advantage of the language programs available through the Penrose Library. And DU is now expanding the number of options available to acquire foreign language skills. Many students, faculty, and staff have taken advantage of the Rosetta Stone program, and now Penrose is now offering additional programs, on a trial basis, as described below. See the rest of the story here.

Computer-Assisted Language-Learning Programs at DU
As you may have heard, Penrose Library and the Center for World Languages and Cultures (CWLC) are evaluating the computer-assisted language-learning (CALL) programs, including Rosetta Stone, that we offer to the campus community. Currently, we offer Rosetta Stone and Tell Me More, but there are several other programs available, including Live Mocha, Mango, Pimsleur, and Transparent Languages. Together, this broader suite of tools would provide our students and faculty with a wider variety of languages and would serve a broader range of learning styles.

If you are currently using Rosetta Stone through Penrose, you will want to be aware that Penrose will be transitioning away from the current Rosetta Stone program, and will be moving to a more limited option (details at the link, above). This is your opportunity to try out the alternatives that could be offered in its place, and express your views on the best replacement(s). And, if you tried Rosetta Stone, but found it didn’t meet your needs, here is an opportunity to find a program that matches your learning style.

Taking a trip to Mexico or Italy may be beyond the means of many of us, but the break is a great time to explore Spanish or Italian language learning programs. Because maybe, someday, having those language skills will be the key to getting us that position that we really want in Geneva or Beijing!

Written by Joan Policastri, Foreign,Comparative & International Librarian

Friday, January 27, 2012

Restricted Library Access

The Westminster Law Library will be on restricted access evenings and weekends from January 30, 2012 - February 27, 2012. The change to restricted access is being implemented to help support our law graduates by providing a quieter place to study while they are preparing for the February 2012 Colorado bar examination.

The doors will be locked from 6pm - closing weeknights and from 6pm Friday until opening on Monday morning. During those times, patrons will need a DU law school ID card to swipe at the front door to gain access. Non-law school patrons, such as attorneys and other individuals needing to do legal research, will need to knock on the door and speak to the Circulation Desk employee in order to enter the library. DU (non-law) students are asked to please find another place to study during this time. Thank you for your consideration.

Written by Patty Wellinger, Reference Services Coordinator

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Legal History Databases

Are you interested in legal history or trying to track down a classic work in a particular are of law for your paper? The library subscribes to a database with several modules called the Making of Modern Law (MOML). These are available remotely to current SCOL students, faculty and staff. Other patrons may access these databases from the public access terminals on Level 2 & Level 3 of the Law Library.

For researchers of American legal history, Primary Sources is a fully searchable digital archive of the published records of the American colonies, documents published by state constitutional conventions, state codes, city charters, law dictionaries, digests and more.

Provides digital images of every page of 22,000 legal treatises on US and British law published from 1800 through 1926. Full-text searching on more than 10 million pages provides researchers access to critical legal history in ways not previously possible.

Historical trial accounts and official documents covering famous cases as well as everyday events in U.S & British courts. Primary source material also includes some legislative and administrative proceedings.

U.S. Supreme Court Records and Briefs contains the world's most comprehensive online collection of records and briefs brought before the nation's highest court by leading legal practitioners. It includes transcripts, applications for review, motions, petitions, supplements and other official papers of the most-studied and talked-about cases, including many that resulted in landmark decisions.

Written by Patty
Wellinger, Reference Services Coordinator

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Resources Supporting Research on P4R

A recent post on The View From Above, the blog of The Ved Nanda Center for International and Comparative Law, discussed the World Bank’s Project for Results (P4R) which proposes a new financing alternative from the World Bank for development, and poverty reduction programs. Students in SCOL courses such as Global Climate Change or the Sustainable Development series, or international business courses may be interested in locating materials in this area.

If you would like to find additional information on the World Bank or the Project for Results, as well as some basic background for the discussion, here are some resources to get you started – there are many other resources you will want to consult. See particularly the tabs on Projects and Operations, and Data. Research papers can be found under the Publications tab.Here is a link to the results of a search in the Westminster Law Library catalog for a keyword search on
“world bank” AND “indigenous peoples”
If you would like to find additional information on the World Bank or the Project for Results, as well as some basic background for the discussion, here are some resources to get you started – there are many other resources you will want to consult.
About/From the World Bank:
Jurist’s This Day in Law: World Bank Created
The World Bank Group homepage - See particularly the tabs on Projects and Operations, and Data. Research papers can be found under the Publications tab.
Here is a link to the results of a search in the Westminster Law Library catalog for a keyword search on “world bank” AND “indigenous peoples”
Non-World Bank organizations that may be of interest include:
Recent Westminster Law Library Project Finance books include the following:
1) Energy & Environmental Project Finance Law & Taxation: New Investment Techniques. New York: Oxford University Press, 2010. Level 1 K3981 .E4 2010
2) The Law and Business of International Finance. Hoffman, Scott L., New York: Cambridge University Press, 2008. Level 1 K891.B8 H64 2008
3) Project Finance, Securitsations, Subordinated Debt. Wood, Phillip., London: Sweet & Maxwell, 2007. Level 1 K1331 .P765 2007
And, don’t neglect the Penrose Databases. Some items that might be of interest include these three items:

1.    Doing business [electronic resource] : an independent evaluation : taking the measure of the World Bank-IFC doing business indicators / World Bank Independent Evaluation Group

2.    International Business/Finance Databases from Penrose Library

3.    International Financial Statistics - Covers the monthly publication International Financial Statistics as well as data found in the annual publication International Financial Statistics Yearbook. Our subscription does not cover Balance of Payments Yearbook, Direction of Trade Statistics Yearbook, or Government Finance Statistics Yearbook. The product can browsed by country or by variable, and can also be searched. Areas of statistical coverage include exchange rates; fund accounts; interest rates; international liquidity; international transactions (imports and exports); balance of payments; money and banking; government finance; prices, production, and labor; and national accounts. IMF press briefings, press conferences, official IMF statements, and many other documents are also available through the service. Our subscription allows up to five simultaneous users.

Using a research guide is a great way to learn more about the resources available, as well as to keep track of the places you’ve looked. The American Society of International Law’s Electronic Research Guide: International Economic Law is an excellent guide for this topic.

And, finally, don’t forget the Nanda Center’s Research Guide. Use the “Enviro” and “Indig Ppls” tabs to locate additional resources.

Written by Joan Policastri, Foreign, Comparative & International Law Librarian

Monday, January 23, 2012

Lexis Advance Launches at DU

Lexis is hosting a Lexis Advance Launch Party on Tuesday, January 24, 2012 in the forum. Come have fun and learn more about this exciting new Lexis product. There will be carnival games, a snow cone machine, and help for registering Lexis Advance IDs. Open to everyone! 

You can also learn more about Lexis Advance by watching a YouTube video or reviewing some Research Guides. Robert Ambrogi's LawSites blog includes a review of the main features of the new software.

Katy Sparks, the Academic Lexis Rep for DU will be offering Lexis Advance training sessions later in the semester.Lexis Advance is available via your iPad or iPhone! Click here to download the free apps.

Written by Patty Wellinger, Reference Services Coordinator


Saturday, January 21, 2012

“Shepardizing” Confusion

How do you know if your case, statute or other authority is still good law? How can you find other authorities on the same subject or who have cited your case? Use a citator, one of which is Shepard’s Citations. Frank Shepard originated this legal service in 1873, and the company moved to Colorado Springs, Colorado in 1948. For over 100 years, this citator was only available in print. It was primarily lists of case citations (without case names) that cite your case, preceded by a letter indicating whether it affirmed, overruled, discussed or followed your case. Shepard’s also listed the number for the West headnote topic and key number which the case discussed. This meant that one did not have to physically look up all of the cases listed, only the ones which dealt with your legal issue.

LexisNexis purchased Shepard’s in the later 1990s, and released their first online version around 1999. They began developing their own system for research headnotes and tools, which are also not a part of the case opinion they may precede. Until LexisNexis switched over to its own Citations they continued using the West topic and key numbers for their Shepard’s Citations. Like many libraries, the Westminster Law Library has discontinued most of their print Shepard’s Citations, except Colorado. The online version of Shepard’s is found in the law school password protected LexisNexis research system, as well as the publicly available LexisNexis Academic database on the Westminster Law Library’s homepage.

Here comes the confusion. West is a competitor of LexisNexis, and still publishes many of the official case reporters and secondary sources such as AmJur, ALR and digests, using its research tool known as the West topic and key number system. The password protected and the public Westlaw databases use this same tool, and call their citatorKeycite”. The Westlaw headnotes are not part of the case opinion, just as the newer LexisNexis headnotes used in their current online databases are not a part of the online opinion. So, you cannot plug a LexisNexis headnote into a West product, and you cannot use the West headnotes to find materials in the LexisNexis research system. Although you may hear attorneys using the now trademarked term “Shepardizing”, they often are still referring to the West citator and headnotes, or may be using that verb generically to say “is it still good law?”

Written by Catharine Cott, Reference Librarian

Monday, January 16, 2012

Foreign, Comparative & International Law Research Classes

Are you interested in practicing global or international law? Are you a member of the International Law Journal and want to improve your foreign, comparative & international law research skills? Come join Joan Policastri, the Westminster Law Library's very own FCIL research specialist in a series of classes being offered during the Spring semester.

There will be nine classes offering a variety of databases that can help you with your research projects. Each topic will be offered twice, once at noon and once at 5:15pm on the same day. A certificate of completion will be offered to those students who attend all nine sessions. Click here to print off a flyer with more details. Noon sessions will be held in SCOL Rm. 313, PLEASE NOTE: the Evening sessions have been moved to SCOL Rm. 330 R (library study room) due to a scheduling conflict.

Topics include:
  • HeinOnline - Law Journals, UN Collection
  • Foreign Law Guide / Index to Foreign Law Periodicals
  • United Nations website & UN Treaty Collection
  • HeinOnline - Constitutions of the World, Treaties & Agreements Library, FIL resources
  • Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law / International Encyclopedia of Law
  • Oxford Reports on International Law / Oxford Scholarship Online
  • Columbia International Affairs Online (CIAO) / Europa World
  • Inter-Am / Latin America
  • Social Science Research in the Penrose databases
For more information, contact Joan Policastri at jpolicastri@law.du.edu or 303-871-6017.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Colorado Bar Association (CBA) Offers Free Student Memberships

Become a student member of CBA today. Click Not A CBA Member? JOIN NOW on left frame. Scroll to and click Student Membership Application and complete online. Your student CBA membership also includes free membership in one of the following local bar associations:

  • First Judicial District
  • Arapahoe
  • Boulder
  • Denver
  • Douglas/Elbert
  • El Paso
  • Pueblo
  • Weld

Students may also join the following CBA sections for a fee prorated fifty percent after January 1, 2012

Law Practice Sections Dues

Agriculture & Rural Law 15.00

Dispute Resolution 25.00

Business 25.00

Communications & Technology Law 15.00

Construction Law 10.00

Criminal 25.00

Disability Law 15.00

Elder Law 25.00

Entertainment & Sports 15.00

Environmental 15.00

Family 30.00

Government Counsel 15.00

Health 15.00

Immigration Law 15.00

Intellectual Property 30.00

International Law 20.00

Judicial Section 15.00

Juvenile Law 20.00

Labor & Employment Law 15.00

Litigation 20.00

Natural Resources & Energy Law 20.00

Real Estate 25.00

Solo/Small Firm Practice 15.00

Taxation 25.00

Trust & Estate 25.00

Water Law 20.00

Workers’ Compensation 30.00

Written by Sheila Green, Reference Librarian

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Changes to Prospector Borrowing

UPDATE: Please note that NO Prospector borrowing is available via the law library until February 4th due to the merge listed below. Please request materials through WorldCat / ILL until Prospector is working again.

Prospector is a combined catalog of 26 Colorado & Wyoming libraries that allows you to search for and to request items that are not owned by DU. The library catalogs for the Westminster Law Library and the Penrose Library at the University of Denver are being merged on the Prospector borrowing system. Due to this merge, Westminster Law Library patrons will need to request books through Prospector by selecting the U of Denver tab instead of the U of Denver Law tab when asked by the form “With which library are you affiliated?” This change begins January 9, 2012. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the Interlibrary Loan Department at illdept@law.du.edu.

Written by Patty Wellinger, Reference Services Coordinator

Monday, January 9, 2012

International Law... From Above

Are you interested in international affairs? Want to know what some of your faculty think about current events? Want to hear more from the folks at the Denver Journal of International Law and Policy? You can find all of those things, and more, at SCOL’s newest blog, The View From Above (TVFA). July 1, 2011, marked the first postings from The View From Above, the official blog of The Ved Nanda Center for International and Comparative Law, and the archives are already a great source of ideas for papers as well as source materials. Some of the topics on the blog have included: drones, responsibility to protect, China, corporate responsibility, piracy, Greek debt, South Sudan, Palestine, and the Arab Spring. (At least one posting has already had an inquiry re citing it in a paper.)

Here is how TVFA describes itself -

The View From Above is a Denver-based online publication dedicated to creating a forum where practitioners, professors and students can share ideas, debate and engage in an ongoing conversation about international law and foreign policy. In the long term, The View From Above aspires to become the primary online publication for high-level discussion on current international law developments as they occur. Through the use of the internet and social media, we hope to disseminate information in a meaningful way in order to bridge the gap between academics, practitioners, policymakers, and students. The View From Above hopes to advance the practice of international law by making the discussion of international legal issues as responsive to the rapidly changing landscape as technology will allow.

The TVFA is a great addition to SCOL’s already excellent, world-respected line up of international law resources, including the Ved Nanda Center for International and Comparative Law, and the Denver Journal of International Law and Policy (it was great to see the DJILP prominently displayed at the entry to the Peace Palace Library). The Nanda Center was created in 2006 with a gift from DU Law alum Douglas Scrivner, and, his wife, Mary. The DJILP was created by our own Professor Ved Nanda in 1971.

In addition to posts from Prof. Nanda, other bloggers include Professors Akerson and Wiersema, your fellow law students and members of the DJILP staff. Guest bloggers include former students and current staff. Jon Bellish was instrumental in putting together the final product, and he is an active blogger, too. And the project could not have come together without Karlyn Shorb, the Administrative Director of the Nanda Center.

Written by Joan Policastri, Foreign, Comparative & International Librarian

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Bar Exam Changes in 2012

The Colorado Supreme Court (Court) exercises jurisdiction over all matters involving the licensing of persons to practice law in the State of Colorado. The Court also appoints the Colorado State Board of Law Examiners (Board), which recommends changes or additions to the rules of procedure governing the admission to the practice of law. The Board announced that Colorado has adopted the Uniform Bar Examination (UBE) effective November 1, 2011. Other jurisdictions adopting the UBE include Alabama, Arizona, Idaho, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, and Washington. See amended C.R.C.P. Chapter 18 Rules 201.1 et. seq., as well as the following websites: http://www.coloradosupremecourt.com/BLE/ble_home.htm ; http://www.cbaclelegalconnection.com ; and http://www.ncbex.org/ for information.

The UBE score includes scaled scores from the Multistate Bar Examination (MBE) (50%), Multistate Essay Examination (MEE) (30%), and the Multistate Performance Test (MPT) (20%). Prior to admission to practice law in Colorado, applicants must also complete the Multistate Professional Responsibility Examination (MPRE) and the one day Mandatory Course on Professionalism. The ability to transfer UBE scores among states is determined by each individual jurisdiction.

Written by Catharine Cott, Reference Librarian