D’Angelo Law Announcements

New Harry Potter book display and research guide

Harry Potter Book Display

Display of books about the Harry Potter series. Photo by Rebecca Starkey.

Do you need a little bit of magic during reading period and finals week? Take a break from studying by visiting our new display of Harry Potter materials on the 1st floor of Regenstein (near the Dissertation Office). This one-case display highlights just a few of the items available at the University of Chicago Library about the Harry Potter series, including translations, critical studies, and parodies.

For more Potter-related materials in our collections, visit our accompanying Harry Potter and J. K. Rowling Research Guide which includes links to ebooks, reference sources, music, and more.

Remember, if you need help locating research materials on Harry Potter, J. K. Rowling, children’s literature, or just need help with your final paper, Ask a Librarian!

“Because that’s what Hermione does,’ said Ron, shrugging. ‘When in doubt, go to the library.” – Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Restricted access to the D’Angelo Law Library during reading period and finals

Access to the D’Angelo Law Library for non-law students will be limited from Monday, March 5 through Sunday, March 11 during the Law School reading and exam periods. During this period, the library will continue to be accessible to any member of the University community who needs access to legal materials or who would like to work with one of our reference librarians. In addition, all non-law students who are taking Law School classes will have access to the library.

Consult the D’Angelo Law Library page on Access for additional information.

Introducing Ian Williams, new Access Services Assistant

If you study in the library during the evening, you may have seen a new face at the circulation desk. Ian Williams joined the D’Angelo Law Library at the beginning of January as our new Access Services Assistant. Scott Vanderlin, Student Services Librarian, interviewed Ian to find out how he found his way to the library world and what keeps him busy when he’s not at work.

What were you doing prior to coming to the D’Angelo Law Library?

Prior to coming to D’Angelo, I had two part-time positions: working as a circulation clerk for Evanston Public Library and as a Library Assistant for the Oriental Institute Museum here at the University of Chicago.

What has been the biggest difference you’ve noticed between libraries you’ve previously worked at and D’Angelo?

The D’Angelo Law Library is very committed to providing a comprehensive experience for students. D’Angelo supports students in their academic careers with instruction, remote reference, and paging and ILL services, while also providing great spaces and materials for students to relax and take needed breaks from studying. Because of that, I think D’Angelo feels like the best parts of an academic library and a public library merged together.

What originally got you interested in libraries?

When I was young, my parents worked long hours and were unable to pick up my sister and me after school. The local public library was a safe place for us to work on assignments and socialize with friends. Because of that experience, I’ve always viewed libraries as an important part of strong communities and later decided that I wanted to be a part of that experience for new generations of library users.

What are some of your interests outside of work?

I enjoy exploring the city, sightseeing and finding new restaurants or interesting places to visit. I have an affinity for libraries and museums and want to see every new exhibit that I can. I also enjoy spending my time reading during my daily commutes.

What’s the best thing you read, watched, or listened to recently?

Read: A collection of short stories by Josh Weil titled The Age of Perpetual Light. Weil’s prose is so detailed, and his storytelling is so compact that each story feels like its own novel. Though all are fiction, each story made me reflect on aspects of history, society, and modern living.

Listened to: The podcast series More Perfect about interesting cases handled by the U.S. Supreme Court. Every case is fascinating and leaves me questioning whether I agree with the court’s decision and how I would have voted if I were a Supreme Court justice.


Politico Pro Trial

Our trial of Politico Pro is now active. Politico Pro’s reporters cover federal government activity in these areas: Agriculture, Budget & Appropriations, Campaigns, Cybersecurity, Defence, Education, Employment & Immigration, Energy, Financial Services, Health Care, Tax, Trade, Technology, and Transportation with very timely stories and daily newsletters. The Politico Pro trial runs through March 14, 2018.


Wright Fellowship for promising new academic law librarians

The D’Angelo Law Library at the University of Chicago is accepting applications through March 5 for the 2018 Judith M. Wright Fellowship.  Established on the occasion of Ms. Wright’s retirement as the director of the D’Angelo Law Library in 2013, the Fellowship recognizes her 40 years of service to the University of Chicago Law School and her legacy as a mentor to generations of law librarians.

Judith Wright

Judith Wright

The Wright Fellowship will develop promising new professionals in academic law librarianship by supporting a career training program at the D’Angelo Law Library. It provides $4,000 to a law school or library science student or recent graduate for a minimum of six consecutive weeks of temporary, full-time work to occur between June 11 and September 14, 2018.

The Fellowship is intended to give candidates interested in law librarianship as a career an opportunity to apply their skills and knowledge in an academic law library setting. Fellows will work in the D’Angelo Law Library under the guidance and supervision of the Law Library Director and other librarians and will learn about the overall functions, policies, and practices of the D’Angelo Law Library in both collection services and user services departments.

The primary focus of the Fellow’s work will be determined by the interests and prior experience of the Fellow and the needs of the D’Angelo Law Library. In addition to participating in the daily work of a premier academic law library, Fellows will undertake and complete a project based on the needs and capabilities of the D’Angelo Law Library.

The project for Summer 2018 will be one of the following:

  1. Chicago Unbound, the University of Chicago Law School’s institutional repository, contains the scholarship of the Law School community, providing full-text access to decades of Chicago Law faculty scholarship and the archives of many Law School journals and publications. The 2018 Wright Fellow will help develop a new Chicago Unbound collection highlighting the scholarship and service of the Law School’s deans throughout its history. The Fellow will create a space for this historical collection in Chicago Unbound and complete materials for three to five former deans. Creating the new collection will involve reviewing and selecting materials (e.g. articles, speeches, manuscripts, photographs) as well as organizing and describing the selected materials in Chicago Unbound.
  2. The D’Angelo Law Library has an extensive orientation and training program for University of Chicago Law School students that includes in-person tours and learning sessions, online research guides, and customized training and research support for courses and programs. The D’Angelo librarians also maintain a resource guide to the many digital tutorials created and maintained by law database vendors, including Westlaw, Lexis, Bloomberg Law and HeinOnline. The 2018 Wright Fellow will expand the learning opportunities available to UChicago law students by creating digital tutorials specific to D’Angelo services and collections.
  3. The librarians at the D’Angelo Law Library offer reference services to faculty, students, and other researchers through several channels, including in person or by phone at the reference desk, virtual assistance through email and chat, and research consultations by appointment. Over the past few years, D’Angelo patrons have increasingly made use of the virtual reference services. The 2018 Wright Fellow will conduct a review of reference inquiries submitted through D’Angelo’s virtual channels and complete a report that summarizes and analyzes these reference transactions, including recommendations for strategies to address common questions, such as revisions to D’Angelo’s online FAQ, research guides, and targeted video tutorials.

For detailed information on eligibility, requirements, and how to apply, visit the Library website.

Introducing Darrin Rosenthal, new Head of Access Services

Darrin Rosenthal joined the D’Angelo Law Library in October as our new Head of Access Services in October. Scott Vanderlin, Student Services Librarian, interviewed Darrin to find out how he found his way to the library world and what keeps him busy when he’s not at work.

What were you doing prior to coming to the D’Angelo Law Library?

Prior to coming to D’Angelo, I worked in a similar position at SSA Library, another (much smaller) library on campus.

What originally got you interested in libraries?

Libraries are repositories of knowledge, and I love to learn. For this reason, I started working in a library while in college, and with few exceptions, have been working in one ever since.

What are some of your interests outside of work?

I enjoy spending time outdoors, especially hiking and camping; I love seeing live music acts; and I’m a bit of a coffee snob. More than anything, I love hanging out with my wife and 10 month old daughter (and our sweet but poorly behaved pit bull mix, Donnie).

What’s the best thing you read, watched, or listened to recently?

Read: I just finished a biography of Richard Nixon by Stephen Ambrose–highly recommended, especially for any aspiring constitutional scholars or anyone interested in contemporary American politics.

Watched and listened to: Hamilton. I saw it for the first time over a year ago and listen to the soundtrack nearly every day.

Introducing Scott Vanderlin, new Student Services Librarian

Scott Vanderlin joined the D’Angelo Law Library on September 5 as our new Student Services Librarian. Prior to coming to the University of Chicago, Scott worked at the Chicago-Kent College of Law Library and also served as a Reference Associate and taught first year legal research for three years at the Pritzker Legal Research Center at Northwestern University School of Law.

Todd Ito, Head of Instruction and Outreach, interviewed Scott to find out how he plans to work with faculty and students, how he became a law librarian, and about his love for craft beer, indiepop, and artisanal candles.Photo of Scott Vanderlin

What were you doing before you came to the University of Chicago?

For the past 6 years, I worked at Chicago-Kent College of Law as a reference librarian and then briefly as the Associate Director for Research and Instructional Services. Pretty much just hanging out.

What’s your favorite thing about being a law librarian?

I’d be lying if I said that the glory wasn’t nice, but honestly I just really like being able to help students out with an aspect of law school that is not always the easiest or most exciting. And, every day I get to learn about new areas of the law and interesting research that is being done by scholars all around me. So, law librarianship is both intellectually and personally satisfying for me.

What originally got you interested in law libraries?

Most of the things that led me to this career probably happened subconsciously, and over a number of years. When I did make the decision to actually pursue law librarianship, however, it was towards the beginning of my 3L year, and I was slowly realizing that while everyone else couldn’t wait to graduate, all I wanted to do was keep reading, learning, researching, writing, etc. Basically, my favorite things about law school were the things that a lot of my classmates couldn’t wait to be done with. At the same time, I went to law school with the conscious, if vague, idea that I wanted to use my education to help people. I assumed that the “where” and “how” of helping people would become clearer as I learned more about the law, and I guess that while I was slowly backing away from the idea of traditional legal practice, I bumped into the thing I was supposed to be doing all along.

tl;dr: I like law school, doing research, and helping people.

Do you have any advice for law students from when you were a law school student?

I mean, yeah. Tons. Fiercely protect the things about you that make you unique–being different is the best possible thing you can be. BUT, also learn to adapt to the people around you when the situation calls for it–a lot of life is a game, so learn to enjoy it and figure out how to play it well. Look at your professors’ past exams. Don’t take your health for granted–you’re not invincible. Call your parents–they miss you. Nurture your closest friendships–you’ll need them, and neglect can be a tough thing to undo. Learn how to handle criticism. Figure out a study routine that works for you and don’t be intimidated if it’s not the same as someone else’s. Read books for pleasure. Make use of CALI lessons. Travel as often as you get a chance. Learn how to be completely fine on your own–then find somebody who makes you not want to be. Ask librarians for help.

What are some of your interests outside of law libraries?

Craft beer, fantasy football, candle making, reading, indiepop, personal finance, listening to podcasts, sleeping.

What’s the best thing you read, watched, or listened to recently?


Listened to



Supreme Court October 2017 Term Begins

Tuesday the Supreme Court hears the first arguments of the October 2017 term. This year, the Court has before it the President’s travel ban, rights of aliens facing deportation, high-tech gerrymandering, First Amendment challenges to gay rights laws, and whether police need a search warrant to track people through their cell phones. See our Supreme Court Research Guide for sources of news, case status, briefs, and oral arguments in the cases you care about.

The D’Angelo Law Library welcomes new students

The D’Angelo Law Library welcomes the JD class of 2020 and the LLM class of 2018. The D’Angelo Law librarians will introduce new JD and LLM students to the Library’s resources and services during tours and presentations during orientation. We hope you will take advantage of our vast resources and knowledgeable staff. There is a great deal of new information to process, so please remember that if you ever have any questions about the Library, please ask us!

We’ve gathered what we think is the most important information in the Library Guide for Law Students and in the D’Angelo Law Library organization site on Canvas, the University’s course management system, but we also wanted to highlight our Top 5 services and resources here:

1. Reference librarians are here to help.

Our reference staff is knowledgeable, helpful, and accessible by email, chat, phone, and in person. Each Bigelow section also has a Reference Librarian assigned to teach legal research sessions over the course of the year. You can consider that librarian as your point of contact in the library, although all of our librarians are available to help you. We are available seven days a week through email, chat, phone, text and in person at the Reference Desk. See our Hours page for the exact hours.

2. Start with the Law Library website.

The Library website can direct you to services and tools to help you find what you need to study law and conduct legal research. Use our website to get research help, find databases, learn library policies, and keep up with the latest library and legal research news.

3. Access information using our primary discovery tools.

Library Catalog: You can search the Library Catalog for books, electronic materials, and more. The University of Chicago Library has over 7 million books and access to hundreds of thousands of electronic resources, so if you are looking for something, you should start with the catalog, and chances are we have what you are looking for.

Databases: The Library offers access to hundreds of databases covering various subjects. To locate a database to use for your research, use Database Finder, a tool that enables you to search for a particular database by name or browse by subject to identify relevant databases. The Law Library also provides a list of the main databases used for legal research.

Access to Bloomberg Law, LexisNexis, and Westlaw is restricted to Law School students, and each law student will be supplied with an individual password. You will get this password during your library orientation. If you have any questions about these resources, please do not hesitate to Ask a Law Librarian.

Research Guides: The reference librarians have created research guides on a variety of legal topics. These guides give you starting points for doing research in particular areas of law.

4. We offer a number of on demand services.

Scan & Deliver is an electronic document delivery service that enables members of the University of Chicago community to obtain scanned portions of books or journal articles from the Library’s collections. Requests should be made online, directly from the Library Catalog. Requested documents will be scanned and delivered within four business days. We will scan chapters from books or single articles from journals, provided that the chapter(s) or article does not exceed 20% of the entire book or journal issue.

We also offer a paging service for Law School students. We will retrieve uncharged Library books located in the stacks of other libraries on campus. This service is currently available to Law School students, faculty, and staff only. Materials will generally be collected within two business days and placed on hold at the Circulation Desk or delivered to the appropriate carrel. You will receive an email when your item is available for pick-up.

While searching the Libary Catalog, you may also occasionally come across items with the location Mansueto or one of the two D’Angelo Law Library annexes. You can request materials from these storage collections to be delivered to the Law Library. It generally takes less than 24 hours, and you will receive an email when your item is available for pick up at the Law Library circulation desk.

5. You can easily get books from other institutions.

Use Borrow DirectUBorrow, and Interlibrary Loan if you need material that is not available here on campus.

Borrow Direct is a service that can be used to borrow books directly from libraries at the Ivy League universities plus Duke, Johns Hopkins, and MIT. Most books borrowed through Borrow Direct are available for pickup at the Law Library within four business days.

UBorrow is a similar service that can be used to borrow books directly from libraries at the Big 10 universities plus University of Chicago. Most books borrowed through UBorrow are available for pickup at the Law Library within four business days.

If the book you want is not available from Borrow Direct or UBorrow, or if you need it for an extended period of time, you should use Interlibrary Loan. Requests may be submitted online.

If the material you are looking for is not available from any of these services, Ask a Law Librarian, and we’ll be happy to help you locate the material.

University of Chicago students in other schools and programs are welcome at the D’Angelo Law Library. If you are interested in an introductory D’Angelo tour or a research consultation with a law reference librarian, please use the Ask a Law Librarian service to schedule a time with one of us.

Lyonette Louis-Jacques among award-winning authors

Lyonette Louis-Jacques (photo)Lyonette Louis-Jacques, Foreign and International Law Librarian at the D’Angelo Law Library, was among the authors who were recently awarded the Reynolds and Flores Publication Award for their “Mexican Law and Legal Research” guide. The award, named after the authors of the Foreign Law Guide, a core foreign law research source, recognizes members of the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) Foreign, Comparative & International Law Special Interest Section (FCIL-SIS) who have created a publication that “enhances the professional knowledge and capabilities of law librarians.” Louis-Jacques shares this award with her co-authors Bianca T. Anderson, Marisol Floren-Romero, Julienne E. Grant, Jootaek Lee, Teresa M. Miguel-Stearns, Jonathan Pratter, and Sergio Stone.

The guide was recently published in March 2016 in Volume 35, Issue 1, of the Legal Reference Services Quarterly. It covers all types of primary sources of law and secondary legal literature, including international agreements, state gazettes, law journals, textbooks, and monographs. Additionally, it filled a gap in the literature: it contains an extensive bibliography of secondary literature in English on Mexican law and legal research, which is not found in other research guides or treatises on Mexican law and legal research. Since its publication, it has received approximately 500 views and over 200 SSRN downloads.