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Faculty: Law Library Services: Materials

Checking out Library Materials

Northeastern Libraries' Materials
Scholar OneSearch
Northeastern University's library catalog, known as Scholar OneSearch, is available here. Search for books and articles in print and online.  Filter your results to search only within the law library's collections. 
Law Faculty Borrowing Privileges
School of Law faculty members may borrow law library materials for a period of 90 days. Faculty members may renew materials unless another person has requested them. Non-circulating materials may be checked out by special arrangement.
Fines and holds: While no overdue fines or lost book charges are imposed upon faculty members by the law library at this time, all items circulated to faculty are subject to recall by other patrons. Please note that Snell Library does charge fines for overdue books. Each faculty member is responsible for these fines. If you need an item which is currently charged out to another borrower, you may request that the library put a hold or a recall on the item. When it is returned, you will be notified and the item will be sent to you.
Book returns: Books from any university library may be returned to the law library information desk. You may also leave books to be returned to the library in the Faculty Lounge on the library bookshelf. A library staff member retrieves material from this location daily.
Recalled items: Library staff may recall books from faculty when other library patrons need to use them. Because library information records are confidential, we cannot reveal the name of the person requesting the item or the name of the person from whom the item is being recalled, even if it is another faculty member.
Routing: The library routes periodicals and current development sections of loose-leaf services upon request. Please contact Rachel Bates (x3553 or with your routing requests. Please be considerate of your colleagues and students and return routed material within 7 days. Also, let us know if you will be away from the law school for an extended period so that we can suspend your routings.
Proxy borrowers: You may authorize another person (e.g., a secretary or research assistant) to borrow materials on your behalf. To designate such a person, complete Snell's Proxy Borrower Authorization Form (opens as PDF). Submit it to the information desk at Snell Library. As the sponsoring faculty member, you will be held accountable for all materials charged for you by a proxy borrower.
Access to Other Libraries' Materials 
Consult a research librarian for information about access to other area libraries. The library is a member of the New England Law Libraries Consortium (NELLCO) and the university is a member of the Boston Library Consortium (BLC). As a member of the Northeastern community, you have library privileges to use the collections at other consortia member libraries. Interlibrary Loan (ILL) items not owned by the Northeastern Libraries may be borrowed through ILL. We have several self-service systems in place for ILL:
WorldCat is a comprehensive web-based library catalog. With WorldCat, you can find out what other libraries have the works you want in their collection. You can then order those works through ILL.
ILLiad is a system for requesting an item via ILL (You will need to register the first time you use this system.)
Your faculty liaison can process ILL requests for you if you e-mail him or her (please give complete information on author, title, edition and year of the work).  He or she can also help you register for ILLiad if you would like to submit the request yourself. You can also submit your ILL requests to us at the InfoDesk by e-mail at

Course Reserve

Course Reserve Policy

Course Reserve on the 4th Floor of the Law Library has at Least One Copy of Each Required Textbook

As a service for students, the Law Library purchases at least one copy of each required textbook as a back-up for short periods of time. Since these backup textbooks are a shared resource, no individual student can expect to have access to a course textbook at will or rely on the Course Reserve copy rather than purchasing their own copy.

  • First Year Classes: two copies of each required text for every section up to six copies per text
  • Upper Level Classes: one copy of each required text for classes with enrollments up to thirty-four, increasing to two copies when the early enrollment in a particular class reaches thirty-five or more, and a third copy when enrollment reaches seventy or more

When Are Books Placed on Course Reserve?

Most books required for Course Reserve are already on the Course Reserve shelf from previous iterations of the course. Other required books are already in the general Law Library collection and are moved to the Course Reserve shelf. If we don’t already own the book, we will acquire textbooks from the NU Bookstore, generally before the quarter begins. Occasionally, a book may not be available until the second week of the quarter.

Starting in the Summer Quarter 2017, Law Library Liaisons will notify faculty by email when their textbooks are available on the Course Reserve shelf and how many copies there are. We are hoping that this change will assist faculty and students in planning their reading for the first weeks of each quarter.

What Happens When Course Reserve Books Are “Missing?”

In a few cases every quarter, a book is reported “missing.” Most of the time, these books are simply in use. Very occasionally, a course reserve book is missing for an extended period of time. Most of these books eventually turn up. Currently, the Law Library policy is not to replace missing texts until the next time the class is taught. 


Research and Paging Services for Faculty

Faculty Liaisons (Librarian Contacts)
A librarian is assigned to work with each faculty member (permanent faculty, LRW faculty and visiting scholars) to provide personalized research and reference assistance. Your liaison is also available to work with your research assistant on special projects and provide personal training for you in the use of online databases. You are encouraged to contact your liaison with any library questions, although you are welcome to deal directly with any of the library staff. Faculty liaison assignments change periodically, in which case you will be notified.
Faculty Paging Service (Document Delivery)
To obtain a photocopy, PDF, or text version of an article, or to borrow print materials during hours that the InfoDesk is staffed, you may call 617-373-3332, e-mail requests to, or contact your library liaison directly by e-mail or telephone.
Please give us as much bibliographic information as you can, and let us know whether you have a preference for photocopies from printed sources or PDF files, and whether Lexis or Westlaw printouts are acceptable.
Professional research librarians are available to assist you with your research and bibliographic searching. Research assistance is generally available from 8:30 a.m.–5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Please contact your faculty liaison or the InfoDesk at x3332 and ask to speak to a research and instruction librarian.
Research Classes and Classroom Support
Librarians are available to come to your class to speak about general or topical legal research techniques. These sessions can be coordinated with particular writing assignments and can include a discussion of online and print research tools. Contact Sharon Persons (, x3883), or your liaison as early as possible if you would like to arrange a session.
Research Assistant Training 
Librarians are available to provide specialized training to your research assistants and can also work with them on specific projects. Contact your faculty liaison or email the InfoDesk at