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Introduction To Library Resources

General Library Resources

Introduction to the Library
Duration 5.13

This video includes:

  • the Course Reserves Room on Level 2 of the Student Centre in Hamilton
  • Library of Congress call numbers
  • using the online catalogue

Beyond books
Duration 4.51

This video includes:

  • journal articles
  • chapters within an edited book
  • commentaries
  • electronic material

Starting places in the Law Library
Duration 2.04

This video includes:

  • dictionaries
  • abbreviations

Want to know more or can't find what you want??

If you want to know more about using library search and our services in general see our Library Guides page and our video guides

If the Library does not hold or provide access to a particular resource that you need you can probably get it through our Interlibrary Loan service. This service us allows to request books, journal articles etc from other libraries so you can access them. You can access the Interlibrary Loan page via the "place/track interloan" link in the key tasks menu on all the library webpages. See the Library's Interlibrary Loan page for a detailed description of how it all works.

Law Specific Resources

Useful texts

These texts provide a good overview of the concepts and systems associated with law:

  • J F Burrows, Statute Law in New Zealand [KUQ70.B86]
  • M MacDowell and Duncan Web The New Zealand Legal System: structures and processes [KUQ440.M44]
  • G Morris Law Alive: The New Zealand legal system in context [KUQ440.M47]
  • Claudia Orange Treaty of Waitangi [KUQ354.O63]
  • R Scragg Principles of Legal Method in New Zealand [KUQ68.S28]
  • M R Russell Legal Research in New Zealand[KUQ451 .P45]
  • Simon Dorsett and others Legal writing a complete guide to a career in Law

Study guides, student companions, etc

The Law Library has revision guides for a number of areas of law. Here is a list of the current editions of student companions and guides.

Introduction to the Library Databases
Duration 5.13

This video includes:

  • Who can use the databases
  • Accessing databases
  • Scope/coverage


Commentaries are:

  • An in-depth examination of a legal topic e.g. employment law, trusts, taxation, etc.
  • Written by specialists - judges, practitioners, academics etc.
  • A means of determining key case law and legislation

Commentaries explain what the law is about, and are excellent for research because they provide cross-references to other useful sources. Entries in an online commentary usually include links to important cases or legislation where they appear in the same database.

Commentary on Westlaw NZ

Westlaw NZ contains relevant commentary under the text of Act sections where appropriate, which is taken directly from Westlaw NZ online publications such as Adams on Criminal Law, McGechan on Procedure, and others. If you know the Act (and section) that applies to your research the quickest law to locate commenary is via the Related Documents Tab.

Commentary by Act
Duration 3m 38s
  • The related documents section and commentary tab
  • CCH contains taxation, employment and business commentary.

Commentary in Lexis Advance

Use the legislation citator to locate commentaries and other resources such as journals under the analytical materials heading. Commentaries found on this database include Garrow and Turkington's Criminal Law in New Zealand and Mazengarbs Employment Law in New Zealand. One of the most useful commentaries is The Laws of New Zealand as it covers all aspects of law.

Commentary by Act
Duration 3m 38s
  • Legisation Citator
  • Types of linked material
  • Accessing a specific resource.

Laws of New Zealand
Duration 4m 44s

  • Using Laws of New Zealand