Monday, November 9, 2015

Electronic Resource of the Month: Utilizing ProQuest

Welcome to another new monthly segment, Electronic Resource of the Month! On the second week of each month we’ll be highlighting electronic resources available to Loyola Law students and faculty. We’ll be tagging these posts with appropriate tags at the bottom; you can use these tags throughout the blog to help guide your research.
Loyola Law students and faculty have access via the Law Library and the University Monroe Library to five ProQuest databases: Congressional, Legislative Insight, New York Times Historical, Dissertations and Theses, and Religion. Congressional and Legislative Insight are available via the Law Library’s Online Resources webpage; Dissertations and Theses, New York Times Historical, and Religion are available via Monroe Library’s Databases webpage. You will need to login using your Loyola username and password or use a Loyola networked computer.

Here we will be looking at Congressional and Legislative Insight, great resources for federal legislative research. Using these resources, you can find committee hearing transcripts, House and Senate documents, Congressional Research Service (CRS) Reports, and other similar legislative documents.

Congressional is better situated for browsing in order to look at multiple laws/other documents on topics. If you are looking for specific legislation, Legislative Insight may suit you better. Both databases have legislative history information, but Insight will have CRS Reports, Presidential Signing Statements, and other similar documents that are not available on Congressional. To ensure complete coverage of your topic, you may want to look at both resources.

On Congressional, you can also search for news and social media posts related to particular topics. From the homepage, you can search for social media posts including Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and other blogs written by Senators, Representatives and Federal agencies. When searching documents, a menu on the right-hand side of the document main page will list related news sources that can be accessed, either through recent news or New York Times Historical. Be cautious with these news links as they are not always directly related to the subject you are researching.

Bluebook Rule 12 requires that citations to official session laws include the Public Law Number and the Statute at Large citation. The main page of Legislative Insight has a Citation Checker, which will allow you to enter a Public Law Number, Statute at Large citation, or enacted bill to retrieve the equivalent citations.
The Bluebook: A Uniform System of Citation R. 12, at 121 (Columbia Law Review Ass’n et al. eds., 20th ed. 2015).

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