Our Guide to Source Collection answers some of the most basic questions about collecting sources during the editing process. You can also come to the Reference Desk for help with source collection when the journal manual and the Bluebook don't answer your questions—the research librarians at the Law Library all worked as editors on a journal while in law school.
Analyzing sources - before you start searching
How do I figure out which Bluebook rules apply?
Can you tell what the source is? For example: a book, or a Congressional document, or a treaty?
- Check the Bluebook tables and index. Read the rules, too. They tell you which version of a source should be used. For example, you might end up looking at a newer edition of a book than the one the author cited in their first draft.
- Bieber’s Dictionary of Legal Abbreviations can translate abbreviations.
Ask a research librarian for help in deciphering odd citations, and identifying and locating materials.
Check our Guide to Source Collection for tips on collecting books, articles, primary materials, and other sources. And please see a reference librarian for help if you can't find something.