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HLSL Visiting Researcher Guide

This guide will give visiting researchers an overview of the resources and services available at the Harvard Law School Library.

Introduction

Please Note

The Harvard Law School Library will be getting a new roof this summer and along with this there will likely be some noise and disruption. Please keep this in mind if you are planning to do research here this summer and feel free to contact us if you have any questions on this.

Welcome to the Harvard Law School Library

This guide is meant to serve as an introduction to the resources and services available to visiting researchers at the Harvard Law School Library.  Please refer to the other tabs of this guide for information on using electronic databases, research guides and searching the Library's catalog as well as information on some useful services provided by the Library.  If you are interested in learning more about the process of applying to the Visiting Researcher and Visiting Scholar program, please consult the Visiting Scholar and Researcher (VS/VR) Program webpage.  To learn more about gaining admission to the Harvard Law School Library, please visit the Admission to the Library webpage.

For assistance with specific research questions:

  • Call the Reference Desk at 617.495.4516.

 

Popular Library Services

Library Tours:
If you would like to schedule a tour of the Library, please send a request to Research@law.harvard.edu.

Research Consultations:
Researchers can also request a one-on-one research consultation with a reference librarian to discuss specific areas of research or paper topics.  To request a research consultation, please fill out and sumit a Request a Research Appointment form.

Print Accounts:
Visiting researchers can set up a print account that will enable them to use the Library's printers by visiting either the Library's Administration Suite (Areeda Floor 5 between 9am and 5pm) or the Circulation Desk.

Useful Research Tools

Research Tools

Harvard provides a number of useful tools that can be helpful as you start your research:

  • Bibliographic Management Programs: Electronic citation tools can be a helpful way to organize resources and create bibliographies.  Harvard provides a comparison of the most commonly used citation tools and also periodically offers training classes on RefWorks.
  • LibX Toolbar: Harvard Library users can also download the LibX Toolbar, which will allow users to search the Harvard Library catalog for materials found on Google, Amazon and other online sources with one click.  LibX will also find available Google Scholar results in Harvard licensed databases. 
  • Citation Linker: Harvard's Citation Linker allows users with a full or partial citation to a journal article to use this information to search across all of Harvard's electronic resources and the catalog with a single search.

Library Catalog

How to Search the Catalog

There are two ways to search the Harvard Library catalog: HOLLIS and HOLLIS Classic. Both search the complete catalog, but each one has unique features.  In addition to these two formats, there is also a version of HOLLIS that has been optimized for mobile devices and an iPhone app that allows users to search the catalog.

HOLLIS
HOLLIS allows for natural language searching of the Harvard Library catalog and provides spelling corrections, both of which make it a good starting place for general searches on a topic at the beginning of the research process.  It also includes more searchable Tables of Contents than are available in HOLLIS Classic.  For additional information about how to searches using HOLLIS, please see the HOLLIS training video.

HOLLLIS Classic
HOLLIS Classic allows for more powerful advanced searching than does HOLLIS, including search options such as call number and HOLLIS number.  This makes it more useful when searching for known items or call numbers.  It also allows browsing by author, title, subject or call number.  HOLLIS Classic also supports searches using non-Roman characters (Chinese, Japanese, Korean, etc.), while HOLLIS does not.  HOLLIS Classic has a feature that allows users to email a list of search results.  For additional information about how to searches using HOLLIS Classic, please see the HOLLIS Classic training video.

In addition to searching the catalog, either of these tools will provide links to resources available on Google Books and will allow users to check their accounts, request items from the Harvard Depository or recall items currently held by other users. 

Online Services

Using Our Wireless Services

Visiting researchers can use our guest wireless network by connecting to the wireless network entitled "Harvard Guest". This network has limited access; more information on it can be found here: http://www.law.harvard.edu/about/administration/its/guests/index.html

Online Databases

Westlaw, LexisNexis and Bloomberg Law
Visiting researchers who would like to request access to Westlaw, LexisNexis and/or Bloomberg Law should contact the WestlawLexisNexis  and Bloomberg Law representatives directly.

Law Library Databases
The Library subscribes to a number of databases on topics related to the law and related fields.  For a list of the available resources, please see the Find a Database  page on the Library's website. 

E-Resources
Researchers interested in searching across all of Harvard University's e-resources can also use E-Resources @ Harvard Libraries, which allows users to find e-resources by title, keyword or subject.

Research Guides

Research Guides on Legal Topics

The Library maintains research guides on a wide range of legal topics, which are all available on the Research a Topic page of the Library's website.  These guides give research tips related to particular areas of the law and also provide links and citation information for a range of resources on each topic.

Research Guides on Other Topics

Baker Library Research Guides
Baker Library at the Harvard Business School maintains a number of research guides on a number of financial- and business-related topics. 

Kennedy School of Government Research Guides
The Kennedy School of Government's Library offers research guides on a wide array of topics related to issues of policy, politics and economics for both foreign and domestic jurisdictions. 

Harvard College Libraries
Research Guides in a number of different disciplines are maintained by the Harvard College Libraries.  These guides cover both academic subjects and research skills and are fully searchable.

Library Services

Library Services

The Library offers a number of classes and services that can provide assistance and support for research activities.

Research Services 

  • Research Classes: The Library frequently offers research classes on a variety of topics throughout the semester.  To sign up for one of these classes, visit our calendar.
  • Research Consultations: Researchers can also request a one-on-one research consultation with a reference librarian to discuss specific areas of research or paper topics.  To request a research consultation, please fill out and sumit a Request a Research Appointment form.
  • Request Resources: Library patrons can request that a resource be purchased or that a resource that has not been cataloged is sent to them by filling out a the proper form available on the Forms & Services page of the Library's website.

Other Law Library Services

  • Print Accounts: Visiting researchers can set up a print account that will enable them to use the Library's printers by visiting either the Library's Administration Suite (Areeda Floor 5 between 9am and 5pm) or the Circulation Desk.
  • Computers & Network Access: Researchers who wish to connect their personal computers to the Library's network either wirelessly or through a wired connection should follow the instructions available here.
  • Photocopiers and Scanners: Photocopiers and Scanners are available throughout the Library.  A current list of locations is available here
  • Law Library Carrel Shelves: Visiting researchers may also apply for a carrel shelf in the Library. If you are interested in a carrel shelf, you may submit an online application to request one. Space is limited, so some requests may not be able to be met.
  • Lockers: If a library carrel is not available, Visiting researchers may instead request access to a locker in the library.  To request a locker, contact Alethea Jones, Circulation and Patron Services Assistant. 

Crimson Cash

Crimson Cash is a program that allows Harvard Affiliates with a Crimson Cash card to add cash value to their card and then swipe it to make purchases at various restaurants and stores on and off campus.  Crimson Cash can also be used to pay to make copies at most photocopiers on campus.  Visiting researchers can get Crimson Cash cards from the Library's Circulation Desk.

Other Harvard University Libraries

Information about the other Harvard University Libraries, which specialize in a wide variety of academic disciplines is available on the Harvard University Library website.  Please note that you will need to arrange access with each library individually.

Getting Help

Contact Us!

Ask Us!Submit a question or search the knowledge base.

CallReference Desk, 617-495-4516

TextAsk a Librarian, 617-702-2728

Emailresearch@law.harvard.edu

ChatOpen a chat window

Meet Consult a Librarian

Classes View Training Calendar or Request an Insta-Class

Visit Us Library and Reference Hours