Alberta Law Libraries carries a rich suite of print and online-access law reviews and journals, as well as annual publications and conference proceedings, which provide a wealth of articles on legal topics.
Key Online Resources Offered by Alberta Law Libraries
The following resources are mentioned throughout this guide:
- Alberta Law Libraries “Research Guides”
- Access to HeinOnline is available to clients in any of our libraries, or remotely if you are a registered client with Alberta Law Libraries. Sign in using your card number (barcode) & last name.
- Access to WestlawNext® Canada (LawSource) is available to clients in all Alberta Law Libraries public locations.
- Quicklaw® is available to clients in all Alberta Law Libraries public locations.
Find a Known Legal Article
Step 1: Find a Known Legal Article - Confirm the Details
It is useful to have as many of the following as possible:
- Author name
- Article title
- Journal or Law Review title
- Year of publication
Missing some information? Fill in the gaps with one of the following resources:
A. Search online (Google or another search engine) with as many of the details as you have:
- Search results may contain complete citations for your article, or even the article itself, available freely online.
B. Use a print index to get more information. Search by author name, subject, case name or statute name, in one of the following:
- Index to Canadian Legal Literature;
- Current Law Index (covers US, Canada, UK, Ireland, Australia and New Zealand publications);
- In the print index for the periodical itself, if known, and if the index covers the time period in which your article was likely published (e.g. Law Quarterly Review);
- In the index for a topical law reporter which contains articles on your subject (e.g. Reports of Family Law).
C. Use the Alberta Law Libraries online catalogue to search in an annual publication.
For annual publications added to our collections, complete tables of contents are included. (e.g. Annual Review of Criminal Law)
- Use a keyword search in the Alberta Law Libraries catalogue for the author’s name and/or some subject keywords.
- Click the Table of Contents button for each of the titles in your search results to find your article.
D. Use an online index to get more information. Search one of the following resources:
- Scott Index to Legal Literature (bilingual). Available through the CAIJ (Centre D’Accès à l’Information Juridique) Biblio catalogue. Select the radio button for “articles.”
- Index to Canadian Legal Literature, available on Quicklaw:
- Use the Commentary tab. If using your own subscription, you may need to make additional selections in the Source box. Your available source choices will depend on your subscription.
- You may find your article full-text online at this step.
- Index to Canadian Legal Literature, available on WestlawNext® Canada (LawSource).
Step 2: Find a Known Legal Article in Print or Online
A. Find the print publication in Alberta Law Libraries
Alberta Law Libraries holds many titles in print. Search the catalogue.
- If the journal, law review, or volume is held by our system, but not in your local library, please contact an Alberta Law Libraries team member to assist you in getting a copy of the article.
B. Find the publication in Alberta Law Libraries online resources.
- Search for an article in HeinOnline.
- Search for the article in WestlawNext® Canada (LawSource), using the Law Reports Articles and Journals template.
- Search for the article in Quicklaw:
- Use the “Journals” tab; or
- Use the “Commentary” tab. You may need to make additional choices under Sources, depending on your subscription.
Note: Publishers may limit access to very recent articles in any database.
C. Publication not available?
If the journal, law review, or volume is not held by Alberta Law Libraries either in print or online, we may be able to obtain a copy of the article from another library. Charges for this service may apply. Please contact us for assistance!
D. Additional Information for Alberta Justice Employees
- Please visit the Alberta Government Libraries Intranet page for Alberta Justice Employees for additional online resources. You will require your GOA username and password to access these resources.
- If you are a member of the judiciary or a judicial support employee, please visit Alberta Law Libraries Intranet page for additional online resources provided via IP or password access.
Using Online Resources
A. Use Alberta Law Libraries’ “Research Guides”
- Our Research Guides suggest online resources and specific subject headings or source categories to search.
B. Search HeinOnline:
While heavily US oriented, the Law Journal Libraries database includes publications from Canada and several other Commonwealth countries.
- In HeinOnline, click on “Law Journal Libraries;”
- Click the Search tab just under the HeinOnline logo.
Note: several Search Help documents available in the list on the left. Of particular interest may be: Browse/Search By Subject, Country, or State in the Law Journal Library.
C. Search WestlawNext® Canada (LawSource):
- Use the “Law Reports Articles and Journals” template.
- This search will return full-text articles carried by WestlawNext® Canada (LawSource), as well as citations from the Index to Canadian Legal Literature, which you can then use to access articles from HeinOnline or another source.
D. Search Quicklaw,
- Use the Commentary and Journals tabs.
- In Commentary, you may search the Index to Canadian Legal Literature to find articles on a particular topic.
- Narrow your search by selecting “Add topic(s) to search.”
- Practice Portals: If these are part of your subscription, they may provide journal and commentary sources to search.
- Legal topic group sources: Your subscription may provide these, such as group commentary sources on insurance law or family law.
Using Print Resources
A. Use Alberta Law Libraries’ “Research Guides”
- Our Research Guides suggest general print indexes and specific law review or journals Alberta Law Libraries holds, which index or publish articles on your topic, as well as potential subject headings to search.
B. Use the Index to Canadian Legal Literature, print volumes and supplements, part of the Canadian Abridgment.
- Use the Subject Index volumes to locate information about articles on a legal topic.
- Once you have the information about an article, follow Step 2: Find a Known Legal Article in Print, above, to find the article in a legal journal or law review.
C. Use the Alberta Law Libraries online catalogue to find journals or law reviews on a broad subject area.
- Type a word that broadly describes your subject in the search box
- Then select Journal/Law Report from the drop-down “Search In” menu.
- If the journal or law report has an index, you can use the index to search for articles on a particular issue. The index will give you information about the volume and page on which to find the articles in that journal or law report.