1. Introduction to Secondary Sources

2. Textbooks

3. Legal Encyclopedias

4. Government Documents

5. Legal Dictionaries

Secondary Sources – Introduction

Icon representing the Secondary Sources module. A person hodling a few papers and a book is talking to another person holding some papers.

Approximate duration: 30 minutes

Description: Go beyond the textbook! Learn about some of the key secondary resources used in law.

What Do You know?

Before starting this module, test your baseline knowledge with the following questions. You will receive basic feedback on your answers that will be further explained by the content in the module. Good luck! These questions are just for practice: your results will not be recorded by the system.

If you are having technical difficulties with the activities, please select the following link to download a printer-friendly version: Download questions (.doc, 40 kb)

Show/hide the activity

Learning Objectives

At the end of this module you will be able to:

  • Understand and appreciate the importance of secondary material to a proper legal research methodology;
  • Identify the most relevant types of secondary sources given a specific legal problem; 
  • Locate, use and benefit from:
    • textbooks, treatises and legal dictionaries;
    • legal encyclopedias;
    • government documents; and
    • other sources of legal commentary.
  • Know the leading secondary source material to use (Canadian Encyclopedic Digest, LegalTrac, etc.) to conduct legal research.