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Successful Summer Strategies: Research in the Real World: Home

Research in the Real World Starts Here. Use this guide to orient yourself to the world and research environment.

Law Library Reference Department


George William Hopper Law Library
Dept. 3035, 1000 E. University Ave.
Laramie, WY  82071

Thank You

Content for this site is used with permission from Camilla Tubbs at Thurgood Marshall Law Library, University of Maryland - Francis King Carey School of Law.


This guide suggests steps you can take to prepare for your summer job. 

  • Become familiar with the legal research options at your location.  Learn which research tools your employer uses. Especially within law firms it is important to know what each vendor offers and the pricing models employed so that you do not accidentally run up costs. 
  • If you are lucky enough to have access to a law librarian, make that person's acquaintance immediately. Ask for a library orientation if one isn't automatically made available.
  • If the library is limited or non-existent, find out whether there is a nearby public law library or local bar or courthouse library that you may be able to use.  Pay a visit, introduce yourself, and register, if necessary.
  • Ask for information as to your employer’s policies with regard to copying and borrowing materials and billing research services to clients. Find out whether your office has access to Lexis and/or Westlaw, and clarify whether any restrictions are placed on use of these resources.
  • If your employer has a Lexis or Westlaw representative, get to know that person and take advantage of any training sessions or "free" usage hours that may be available to you.
  • If you know before starting work or find out upon arrival that you will be doing a lot of research in a particular area of law, get some background knowledge or an overview of the subject by quickly reviewing a nutshell, hornbook, or treatise. Ask a librarian to suggest an appropriate source.