Law: Secondary sources

What are secondary sources?

What's the difference between primary and secondary sources?

Secondary sources are the resources that assist you in locating and understanding  the relevant primary sources.

They include:

  • textbooks
  • case citators
  • legal dictionaries
  • legal encyclopaedias
  • journal articles
  • legal databases
  • legal words and phrases
  • legal digests

Primary sources are the actual text of the law, that is, legislation and case law.

For more in-depth information or further help, please look at our Legal Research Workshop below:

Search Essentials

Databases provide access to journal literature either by providing the full text of articles or to article citations and abstracts

Some Key Databases for Law are:

Google Scholar is a free service for searching for some scholarly literature. It includes peer-reviewed papers, theses, books, preprints, abstracts and technical reports.

If the Library has an electronic subscription, you may be able to link to the full text from the Find Full Text at UniSA link.


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