This guide is for law students who are writing a substantial paper as part of their College of Law graduation requirement. It is designed to provide guidance on selecting a topic, conducting a preemption check, organizing your research using citation managers, developing a research plan, writing your paper, and citing your sources in Bluebook citation.
The College of Law requirements for a substantial paper may be found on the law college intranet under College of Law Bylaws, Section 2-109 Rules Governing Satisfaction of Substantial Paper Requirement, pp. 38-41. (Requires UA NetID and password to access.)
As you are searching for a topic for your substantial paper, ask yourself the following:
For further details, you might wish to consult the following articles on finding a topic and developing it into one that is compelling and interesting.
Common approaches to identifying a problem for writing a substantial paper include:
Several law libraries have compiled guides on writing law school papers. Guides we consulted include:
This guide was created by Law Library Fellows Sarah Slinger and Nicholas Mignanelli and Law Librarians Sarah Gotschall and Cynthia Condit.
Last updated November 25, 2019