Google scholar – free case law


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Google scholar – free case law

  1. 1. Free Case Law <br />A Power Point Presentation<br />By DittakaviRao<br />
  2. 2. Google Scholar - Introduction<br />Documents of Google Scholar ( specialized database includes: “articles, theses, books, abstracts and court opinions, from academic publishers, professional societies, online repositories, universities and other websites.”<br />Provides free full-text case law from federal and state courts.<br />Started in November 2009.<br />Cases taken from court websites and other sources such as Cornell (, Justia ( and<br />
  3. 3. Google Scholar – Coverage<br />Coverage of case law includes:<br />U.S. Supreme Court cases from 1791<br />Federal Appellate (Circuit & District), Tax & Bankruptcy Court cases from 1923<br />State Appellate and Supreme Court cases from 1950<br />
  4. 4. Google Scholar - Search<br />General query box<br />Click radio button “Legal opinions and journals”<br />Advanced Scholar Search<br />Provides several options<br />Jurisdiction (You have to select only ONE from the following)<br />All legal opinions and journals<br />Federal cases (you cannot select individual court)<br />Individual state(s) (you cannot select individual court)<br />
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  6. 6. Google Scholar – Advanced Scholar Search<br />Advanced Scholar Search is different than the advanced search feature of general Google.<br />Offers similar Boolean search features in the ‘Find articles’ section: all of the words; exact phrase; at least one of the words; without the words; anywhere in the article/in the title of the article<br />Also provides options for ‘author’; ‘publication’; ‘date’ and ‘collections.’ Two options are in the collections: In all subject areas or specific subject.<br />
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  8. 8. You cannot select all three options. However, you may select multiple states.<br />
  9. 9. Google Scholar – Segment Search<br />Citation <br />Does not recognize punctuation. Follow Blue Book citation format. e.g. “391 a 2d 1020”<br />Case name<br />Use Advanced Scholar Search and use ‘exact phrase option and select ‘in the title of the article’ option. E.g. “Azzarello v Black Bros” (Do not use ‘versus’ or v with period (v.) between the names.<br />
  10. 10. Google Scholar – Segment Search<br />Judge<br />Use exact phrase – put the name in quotes from the general query box. e.g. “judge Flaherty”<br />You can also restrict the results by selecting a jurisdiction and time (since year) specification. e.g. since 1998<br />Topic search<br />By default Google adds AND connector in between the words that amounts to more results. Use quotes if you know the words are in sequence. e.g “grandparents visitation rights”.<br />
  11. 11. Citation in quotes brings 449 results, without quote brings 15,600 results.<br />
  12. 12. When you select ‘Pennsylvania cases’ brings 114 results<br />To select state jurisdictions, click on ‘Advanced Scholar Search’ option next to ‘Search’ button<br />
  13. 13. Name in quotes brings 307 results and without quotes brings 460 results<br />
  14. 14. Number of results vary upon selection of a year under “anytime” menu (1991-2010)<br />Only 21 results came (since 2008) where Azzarello mentioned. Azzarello case did not appear since the case published in 1978.<br />
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  16. 16. Google Scholar – Results Page<br />Results are shown in order of relevance<br />Next to each result you will see ‘ How cited’ link<br />Bottom of the search result you may see links such as ‘Cited by’, ‘Related articles’, ‘All versions’, ‘BL Direct’ depending on the result.<br />‘BL Direct’ link provides documents from British Library for purchase. ‘All versions’ link provides the same document from different participating sources.<br />
  17. 17. MENU OPTIONS FROM THE RESULTS PAGE<br />Legal Opinions and journals<br />Articles and patents <br />Articles excluding patents<br />Legal opinions and journals<br />Federal Cases<br />Pennsylvania<br />Advanced search<br />Anytime<br />Drop menu brings the list of the years (since 1991 – 2010 OR anytime options)<br />Include citations<br />‘Include citations’ option provides only citation information not full text . ‘at least summaries’ option removes the citations that are not hyperlinked nor contains full text in the results list.<br />Create email alert<br />You can create an alert for your research. It sends new results to your email account. There is no option of selecting a daily/weekly/monthly alerts rather it sends whenever new results available.<br />
  18. 18. How cited (next to name of the case, Azzarello v Blck Bros)<br />Provides list of the cases and articles, in which the Azzarello case was mentioned, providing context by including the exact location within quotes.<br />Cited by 493 (bottom of the result)<br />Provides list of the cases and articles where the case Azzarello is mentioned (no exact location)<br />Related articles (bottom of the result)<br />Provides similar cases and articles<br />
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  20. 20. You can search within the results<br />
  21. 21. This is the results list of ‘Related articles’ link.<br />
  22. 22. Google Scholar – Reading a Case<br />From the results list click on any case to read.<br />Provides official and commercial cites.<br />Page numbers in the text and margins are references to the page numbers in the reporter (star paging.)<br />Full-text access to the cases cited within the case.<br />Click on footnote numbers, takes you to the footnote text.<br />
  23. 23. Reference to Pennsylvania State<br /> Reports page number<br />Reference to Pennsylvania State<br /> Reports page number<br />
  24. 24. Cases with hyperlinks are available in full text since they are in Google’s database.<br />
  25. 25. Without quotes Google adds in between words AND connector. Search within quotes brought 588 results. After selecting ‘Pennsylvania’ the same search brought 5 cases. Remember you may select year also from ‘anytime’ option.<br />Subject Search<br />
  26. 26. Selection of ‘Pennsylvania’ resulted only five cases.<br />
  27. 27. Remember you can restrict the search to ‘Pennsylvania’ and also in a specific ‘Year’<br />