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Finding a Topic

 

Finding a Topic

When searching for a paper topic, consider the following sources:

  • Course case books; review the comments, notes, and questions sections.
  • Class discussions; did you participate in any intriguing discussions that left questions unanswered?
  • Authority or circuit splits.
  • Current awareness resources.
  • Legal databases.
  • Social media.
  • Legal news.
  • Working papers.
  • Talk to people you know—law professor, judge, legal practitioner.

Ultimately, pick a topic that genuinely interests you. You'll be spending considerable time researching and writing your paper.

General Legal News

Blogs and Websites

Thinking Outside the Search Box

Many law review authors begin and end their search for topic ideas with searching online. However, make sure to take advantage of other opportunities for developing ideas:

1. Class Discussions and Readings often identify open questions in the law

2. Casebooks and Hornbooks will also often point out open issues or areas of controversy

3. Faculty Members are often glad to discuss open issues with students in their areas of expertise

4. Pre-Law-School Experience can help identify issues that aren't on the legal radar but are essential to people working in that field

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