Legal Research II

I.     Course Prefix/Number: PAR 210

       Course Name: Legal Research II

       Credits: 3 (3 lecture; 0 lab)

II.    Prerequisite

PAR 110 with minimum grade of C or consent of the coordinator.

III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course provides exposure to and training in the use of the computer to perform legal research. Content emphasizes Westlaw, LEXIS and Internet research, and introduces the latest forms of computer-assisted legal research.

IV.   Learning Objectives

  1. demonstrate the ability to perform legal research on the Internet.
  2. demonstrate an ability to perform legal research on LEXIS.
  3. demonstrate an ability to perform legal research on Westlaw.
  4. demonstrate an ability to utilize the latest technologies available to perform legal research.
  5. demonstrate an understanding of the non-legal information that is helpful to a law office that is available on the Internet and on LEXIS and Westlaw.

V.    Academic Integrity and Student Conduct

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.

Please review the Code of Academic Conduct and the Code of Student Conduct, both located online at

VI.   Sequence of Topics

  1. Introduction to Computer-Assisted Legal Research
  2. Using Netscape and Windows Explorer for legal research
  3. How to Use Search Engines & Catalogs
  4. How to find experts on the Net
  5. How to find people on the Net
  6. How to perform business research on the Net
  7. Researching medical/legal issues on the Net
  8. Utilizing the latest technology to perform legal research
  9. LEXIS
  10. NEXIS, MEDIS, & other not-for-lawyer-only services
  11. Westlaw
  12. Searching Law Review, Journal, & Treatise databases
  13. Searching news & information databases

VII.  Methods of Instruction

  1. Lectures
  2. Computer laboratory exercises
  3. Problems

Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

  1. Reading Assignments
  2. Writing Assignments

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

Long, Legal Research Using Westlaw, Delmar, 2001.
Long, Legal Research Using the Internet , Delmar, 2000.
Delaney, Electronic Legal Research, 1st ed. Thomson, 2002.
Harvard Law, Uniform System of Citation: Bluebook, 18th ed., Harvard Law Review, 2005

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

  1. Homework
  2. Computer exercises
  3. Examinations

XI.   Other Course Information

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.

Oakton Community College is committed to maintaining a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the community, and complies with all federal and state Title IX requirements.

Resources and support for
  • pregnancy-related and parenting accommodations; and
  • victims of sexual misconduct
can be found at

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at

Electronic video and/or audio recording is not permitted during class unless the student obtains written permission from the instructor. In cases where recordings are allowed, such content is restricted to personal use only. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited. Personal use is defined as use by an individual student for the purpose of studying or completing course assignments.

For students who have been approved for audio and/or video recording of lectures and other classroom activities as a reasonable accommodation by Oakton’s Access Disabilities Resource Center (ADRC), applicable federal law requires instructors to permit those recordings. Such recordings are also limited to personal use. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited.

Violation of this policy will result in disciplinary action through the Code of Student Conduct.