Essential requirements to be a successful Law Librarian

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Trained in legal research (including the use of online databases such as Westlaw, Lexis, and Dialog), administration, legal information systems, bibliography, and the organization of legal resources, law librarians are the well-trained professionals working behind the scenes on every major court case, for every major corporation, and at every law school across the nation.

Often overlooked, these talented individuals know just about everything there is to know about legal research; and if utilized to their full potential, they can be extremely helpful to attorneys and law students alike.

How, exactly, do you become a law librarian? The most common way is to get a library science master's degree from a program accredited by the American Library Association (ALA). Some law librarians also have J.D. degrees, and some programs even give students the option of earning a J.D. and a library science degree at the same time.

While you don't need a J.D. to work as a librarian in a law firm, corporation, or government library, you do need one if you aspire to be the director of the law library at a law school. Also, reference librarians at law schools are sometimes required to have J.D.s. You should check with the particular school you are interested in working at for more information. Simply having a J.D. will not qualify you for all law librarianship positions.

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