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Journal Source Gathering

The purpose of this guide is to help senior and junior journal staff members through the source gathering process. This guide covers the most reliable sources for some of the most used items found on subscription databases and on the Internet.

Source Gathering

The purpose of this guide is to provide a starting point for journal members with their source gathering assignments.  This guide covers the most reliable sources for some of the frequently cited sources.  

Useful links:

Try these sources if you are not familiar with abbreviations in a footnote:

Library Policies and Procedures for Journals

General Policies

  1. Each journal is assigned a librarian liaison:  

American College of Trust and Estate Counsel (ACTEC)

Lisa Spar -

Family Court Review (FCR)

Carolyn Hasselmann -

Hofstra Labor & Employment Journal (Labor Law)

Isaac Samuels-

Hofstra Law Review (Law Review)

Lisa Spar -

Journal of International Business & Law (JIBL)

Kevin Shelton -

  1. Editors should contact their liaison directly regarding needs and concerns.  The Research Editors will work with the liaison on source gathering, interlibrary loan requests, and other issues that may arise regarding the Law Library and Axinn Library.

  1. The library liaison will give an orientation for incoming Research Editors* in the spring semester.  The orientation will include a talk on procedures and policies.   Attendance at the library orientation is mandatory.

  1. Each journal is issued a borrowing card for use by journal staff members when borrowing books from Axinn Library.  The cards are held at the Law Library Circulation Desk.  The journals’ staffs are solely responsible for retrieving materials from Axinn Library and from the Law Library.  The Law Library staff does not retrieve materials from Axinn Library on behalf of any journal.

  1. The Law Library permits journal members to take non-circulating books from the Law Library for same-day scanning or use in the law journal offices.  The loan period for these books is three hours.  The system for scanning or using non-circulating books is for journal purposes only and is not for personal scanning or use.

  1. All journals are responsible for any books borrowed from Axinn Library, the Law Library, and via interlibrary loan.  Journals must respond to any notice (e.g. overdue notice) sent to them by any library on campus.  Axinn Library maintains its own policies separate from the Law Library. Axinn Library has the ability to restrict privileges it extends to Hofstra’s law journals.

Source Gathering

  1. Law Library Books - Staff must bring books to the Law Library Circulation desk to be charged out.  Books will be charged out under the journal’s account.    Books that do not normally circulate, and books located on Reserve, are charged out for three hours.   Students working on their notes must use their own Hofstra ID to borrow books from the Law Library.

  1. Axinn Library Books - Borrowing books from Axinn Library requires journal staff members to sign-out the appropriate borrowing card held at the Law Library Circulation Desk.

  1. The Law Library will verify that the person requesting the card is a member of the journal.  The student may then use this card at Axinn Library in order to borrow books on the journal’s account.  

  1. The student must sign the “Axinn Library Cards” sheet that requires date, name of student, and time borrowed.  When the card is returned the student indicates the time returned.

  1. This privilege is for source gathering only.  Student working on their notes must use their own Hofstra ID to borrow books from Axinn Library.

  1. The current Editor-in-Chief (EIC) of any journal may, at any time, request from the Law Library information on the use of his or her journal’s borrowing card.

  1. Recalling Materials - Materials that are listed as charged out can sometimes be retrieved by the Law Library for source gathering.  If a journal requests an item that is charged out, the Law Library may retrieve it, and ask the journal to share the item with another patron.

  1. Scanning – All journals have access to book scanners in the law library.  A photocopier with scanning capability is located near the reference desk, and a book scanner is located on the main level near the glass wall of the computer lab.  All journals are encouraged to retain cite checking and support materials in digital format rather than print format where possible.

  1. Photocopying- When a print copy of material is necessary for journal use,  journal students should use the photocopiers in the Law Copy Center.  Non-circulating materials such as periodicals, reporters, statutes, reference materials, and volumes of multi-volume treatises may be taken out of the Law Library for a three hour period, and must be returned the same-day.  The journal student charging out the materials must bring these items to the circulation desk.  After making photocopies, the journal student will bring the items back to the Circulation Desk to be checked in, and then re-shelve the items.

  1. Materials with non-ideal formats - When resources (e.g. ethics opinions) are promulgated and made available differently in different jurisdictions, it can be extremely difficult to find PDF or print copies (if those even exist).  In fact, some publishers (e.g. Bloomberg Law), only publish certain materials in html format.  In such instances, we will ask you to accept an html, e-book, or other web-based version of the resource when it is available from a reputable source (like a bar association or state legal resources website—or even Westlaw or Lexis).   

  1. Statutes and similar materials -   The library has 3 state codes in print.  As all state codes and other similar materials are readily available on Lexis, Westlaw or other online sources, we ask that the journals follow the steps listed below for source gathering. Of course, consulting a reference librarian can be appropriate at any time in the process. Research editors should check with their liaison.
  1. If state code is one of the 3 states we still keep current (NY, NJ, CA)  go to print (or microfiche for superseded for all states, if we have the year). 
  2. For the remaining states, look for official state code online, Lexis or Westlaw.  The executive board will determine the policy for which of these methods the journal's staff will use.  
    1. For states that have adopted the Uniform Electronic Legal Materials Act, see

c. Except in very extraordinary circumstances, we will NOT ILL any state statutes for the journals.

Interlibrary Loan

  1. The Law Library will order materials (books, newspapers, journal articles, etc.) not held by Hofstra University Libraries or that are missing from these libraries via interlibrary loan (ILL).

  1. Interlibrary loan is a privilege extended to the Law Library by other libraries.  Interlibrary loan periods are generally short—often two weeks.  Overdue interlibrary loans can affect the willingness of other libraries to grant the Law Library’s request for interlibrary loans.

  1. Students who cannot locate an item at the Law Library, Axinn Library, or online in a format accepted by their journal’s policies during the source gathering process must verify with a Reference Librarian that the item is not available and complete an ILL form online including the librarian’s name for the unavailable item.

  1. Students will refer these items to a Research Editor, following their journal’s policies.

  1. It is the responsibility of the Research Editors to submit interlibrary loan requests using the ILLIAD system.  ILL requests should include the approving librarian’s name in the notes.  Research Editors will take appropriate actions to reduce the number of duplicate ILL requests by their respective journals.

  1. Limits on ILL -  The law library will not process ILL requests for the following materials:

  1. State Statutes - The Law Library will not process ILL requests for state statutes.  

  1. Tables of Contents/Cover Pages from Periodical Issues - The Law Library will not process ILL requests solely for a periodical’s cover page and/or table of contents.  

  1. Ethics opinions available online

* This term also refers to those editors who hold similar duties.

Frequently used databases

Frequently Used Databases:

Search the Library's discovery tool Discovery for books and articles - both online and in print.  You can search for article title or journal title.  For titles not held by Hofstra, search Libraries Worldwide and sort by Best Match to confirm information.

Use search widget or links, below.

Interlibrary loan forms


Video instructions for creating links



Video instructions for creating users


Additional assistance from website

Bluebook resources

The Bluebook  (print edition)



Help with using and understanding the Bluebook


Bluebook web guides