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Goodson Law Library

Law is a research-oriented profession and the published sources of law are the basic working materials for both the practicing attorney and the legal scholar. The Goodson Law Library provides a mix of spaces for study, research, and reflection that encourages both collaborative work and individual quiet study and offers technology and library services. At Duke Law, students have ready access to rich collections of print and electronic information sources and the support of highly trained librarians to help them develop research skills to last throughout their professional careers. The library offers more than 500 seats in individual study carrels, at tables, and in reservable study rooms, as well as soft seating. More information about the library can be found at Keep up with current news and announcements by following the Goodson Blogson at


The success of a law school library depends as much on the quality of the services it provides as on the strengths of its collections. At the Goodson Law Library, a unified service desk provides law students streamlined, one-stop assistance from a highly knowledgeable and skilled staff. Law-trained librarians also provide instruction in the first-year research and writing program and regularly offer seminars in topics of advanced legal research. Additional library staff members provide empirical research support for statistical projects to faculty members and are available for consultation with students and journal editors.


The Goodson Law Library serves as a resource for legal materials for both the Duke Law School and the University community. The Law Library relies increasingly on electronic sources of legal information while continuing to develop and maintain in-house collections of print resources to support research and scholarship. It is one of the strongest research collections of legal literature in the region, including current and retrospective primary materials from courts, legislatures, and administrative agencies. In addition to books and treatises, the Law Library has available journals, encyclopedias, reference materials, and finding tools on all legal subjects for the United States and foreign jurisdictions, as well as on topics of comparative and international law.

Reflecting Duke’s emphasis on interdisciplinary approaches to scholarship and learning, the Library’s collections provide access to a broad range of resources on law’s intersections with other disciplines. Comparative and international perspectives enhance nearly every area of law, and so the Law Library maintains strong foreign and international law collections to support research in these areas and Duke’s focus on internationalization. The foreign law collection is extensive in coverage, with long-standing concentrations in European law and growing collections in Asian and Latin American law. The international law collection is strong in primary source materials and monographs on both private and public international law topics.

Together, the Duke University campus libraries make up one of the major research collections in the country. Law students can use digital resources, and easily borrow materials from other libraries in the Duke system and libraries at other local universities. Cooperative programs with other libraries, both on and off campus, ensure that needed materials are available for the Duke Law community.