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Picking a Topic and Performing Research for your Advanced Writing Requirement (AWR): Independent Legal Research

Not sure how to pick a topic? How to start your research? How to update and evaluate your sources? When to stop? This guide will help.

Independent Legal Research

The American Bar Association (ABA) requires that every student produce a legal writing that reflects substance, originality, analysis, and rigor and accordingly, Touro Law Center's required curriculum includes completion of the Advanced Writing Requirement (AWR)  described in section 2.3.2 (5) of the student handbook as a:

"legal writing that reflects substance, originality, analysis, and rigor."

But what does that really mean? 

Touro Law Center's handbook goes on to say:

"in order to meet the AWR requirement, the student must engage in a significant piece of supervised legal research that culminates in a writing of at least 8,000 words, inclusive of footnotes, earning a grade of B or better.

The goals of the AWR are to provide students with an opportunity for:

1) engaging in independent legal research;

2) analyzing and making a sustained reflection on a particular area of law; and

3) experiencing an intense, faculty-supervised writing experience.

Writings that satisfy the AWR should reflect legal research, rigorous analysis of a substantive legal issue, and clarity of expression."

Did you notice the bolded text?  The first step in completion of the AWR requires "engaging in independent legal research".

The good news is you are on the right track if you have gotten this far and the even better news is that this LibGuide will take you the rest of the way to completing your independent legal research.

But remember, the reference librarians created this LibGuide and they are available for any questions that come up.