Library Q&A: How do I choose an online study aid?

Q: We recently had a 1L who stopped by the reference desk looking for guidance on study aids, particularly how and where to access them, which ones to use, and when to use them.

A: We are so glad you asked! The University of Missouri Law Library subscribes to two packages of commercial study aids. We buy them so you do not have to!

You can see descriptions and links here: (note: these are only accessible for Mizzou Law students). Law students can use them from off-campus by using their pawprint and password to log-in. In addition, both platforms allow students to personalize their use by creating a unique log-in and password. This means students can save favorite titles and make some information available off-line.

Which One to Choose?
There are many titles to choose from and it can be overwhelming.  Here is some advice from our research assistants about study aids:

  • Sometimes professors will suggest one study aid title over another, so ask your professor for recommendations.
  • I think Examples & Explanations (Wolters Kluwer) is one the best overall tools for learning, grasping, and applying substantive law. It is definitely useful at any point during the semester and for deep dive studying toward the end of the semester.
  • The Emanual Crunchtime series (Wolters Kluwer) is best at the end of the semester/for quick pre-exam review because it provides 10,000-foot summaries of how the substantive law fits together. The visuals, like flow charts or checklists, are helpful for someone like me who needs to see how it all fits together. My only issue with Crunchtime is that I have run across a few inaccuracies before. The Nutshell series (West Academic) is a lot like Crunchtime.
  • The Audio Series (West Academic) are great for audio learners, obviously, and people who have times when they would like to be absorbing material but cannot be looking at a book or a screen. I know various people who gained a lot from accessing these resources! You can access these by selecting the “Listen Offline” option and downloading the app to listen.
  • “I personally did not make much use of all the study aids the library provides my 1L fall semester and 110% wish that I had.”

Remember 1Ls – compare and despair! It may look like other students have it all together, but trust us, everyone is freaking out just a little!