GDL students: PfP2 Research Tips

Finding Books

At this time of year, many of the library books are in high demand, so now is a good time to start thinking about which books you will need for your PfP2 research. If you’re looking for a particular book, start by searching the library Catalogue: Elite> My Library> Library Resources > Library Catalogue.

The library catalogue covers all material available through the library:  hard-copy books, loose-leaf texts, legal reference works, law reports, journals and DVDs as well as linking to materials available electronically (e-books, e-journals etc.) When you find a reference to an “e-item” on the catalogue, click the On-line version link in the record.  This will take you straight to the database/website and into the e-content you want.

If all copies of a book you need are on loan, reserve a copy. Any problems, please speak to library staff or email

Loose-leaf texts

Manchester library has a wide selection of loose-leaf titles.  These are popular with practitioners because they are updated throughout the year, as and when the law changes, and can be relied upon to include up-to-date information.  They are usually divided into sub-sections and provide detailed and comprehensive coverage of the law.  Many of these titles are also available in one of the legal databases.

Electronic Resources

Under ELITE > My Library > eResources  you will find lists of electronic resources by Subject and by Course. Here you will find links to useful websites and also to books, journals etc available in the legal databases.

College of Law Media

The College publishes training programmes on DVD intended primarily to update practitioners, but which cover subjects taught at the College of Law.  The DVDs can be borrowed and viewed at home.

Journal Research

Westlaw and LexisLibrary both contain collections of full-text journals, but Westlaw provides the most comprehensive coverage.  LJI (Legal Journals Index), part of the Westlaw database, abstracts from every substantive legal journal article published since 1986.

When you search Westlaw, you will not be able to see the full-text of every article indexed.  For abstract-only articles, your next step is to search under the journal title in the library catalogue to see if there is a link to an online version in another database or if the hard-copy journal is held in the Manchester library. The Cardiff Index of Legal Abbreviations ( ) will help you decipher your citation.

Newspaper Articles

The ‘News’ search option offered by LexisLibrary covers most UK broadsheets and other nationals.  Using this database’s structured searching of newspaper content will probably be more efficient than searching separate newspaper websites.

What if the book or journal I need is not stocked in the Manchester library?

Please come and speak to the library staff, or email We can often obtain the resources you need, but we do need some notice: 10 days for books, 3 days for journal articles. So please don’t leave your research until the last minute!

Legal Research

If you’d like referesher training on legal research, or need help finding journal articles, or using the hardcopy or online resources, please speak to Liz (Mon-Weds) or email

Legal databases

You can also ask your student reps for help on the legal databases.




Author: manchesterlawlibrary

One of seven centre libraries serving The University of Law

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