LexisNexis is a tremendous resource that provides access to an incredibly large amount of legal and other information. Despite the positive elements of LexisNexis, it can be a bit unruly and difficult to use initially. Using segment searches and connectors will help improve the accuracy of your search results.
Using the "Look up a Legal Case" gray box is a quick way to locate case law. However, it does not allow for full-text searching. Choosing to search the Federal & State Cases allows you to conduct full-text searching by state and federal jurisdictions as well as in all 13 circuit courts. To use this search, choose the Federal and State Cases option located just above Landmark Cases:
Click the Advanced Options button below the search bar to reveal a large menu filled with ways to refine your search:
In Lexis advanced searching, all documents of the same type (e.g., Federal and State Cases or State Statutes and Regulations) have a common structure, composed of the natural parts or divisions referred to as segments.
You can restrict your search to a specific part or segment of a document, such as the court that heard the case or the judge who wrote the opinion. Different types of documents have different segments. For example, a case doesn't have the same segments as a newspaper article.
To search in a specific segment, you can use the Advanced Search form or type the segment name followed by your search terms in parentheses in the search box. This following example uses the "DISPOSITION" segment to search Federal and State Cases searching text in DISPOSITION for instances where Equal Protection Clause AND Title IX appear:
Search connectors are the logic words used to help narrow a search, such as AND, OR, W/n, by defining relationships between your search terms. Search commands provide additional search options, such as ALLCAPS and ATLEAST, which allow you to get more precise results from your search. The following articles provide descriptions and examples for each connector and command.
For information about how multiple connectors work together, see How are Multiple Connectors Processed?
For information on how wildcard characters such as ! and * are used in a search, see Finding Variations of a Word.
This guide highlights only a small portion of the many resources available to you. If you're not finding what you need, don't hesitate to contact Andrea!
Social Sciences Liaison Librarian
tel: (253) 879-2875
office: Collins Library 141
Request an Appointment with Andrea