Library Subject Guides

Law: Research Map

  Assignment Research

  • This guide outlines an effective process for finding information for your assignment.
  • Depending on your topic and your level of study, you may need to rearrange or review these steps.
  • Keep a record of what you have searched, terms used and when the search was carried out as this will make compiling your bibliography easier and enable you to retrace your steps if required.

Understand Your Topic

  • State the question
  • Outline the subject
  • State the legal issues to be researched
  • By identifying the main concepts and legal issues in your question, you can start to develop a search strategy

Find Resources 

Get an Overview

Find general commentary
about your topic


Is your topic governed
by statute?


Case Law

Is your topic determined
by common law?

Internet Resources

Journal Articles

What are the specifics?

Final Check

Have one last look at your resources to see:

  • Has the legislation been amended or repealed since you started researching?
  • Has your leading case been overruled?
  • Has a recent article on this matter opened up a new line of argument?

Write your assignment

There are many books in the Library that provide useful hints for writing in the law.

Cite your sources

Ensure all the sources of information that have contributed to your essay, are cited using the New Zealand Law Style Guide.

More on citing your sources.