Westlaw Next – A Beginner’s Guide to Online Research (pt 1)

1. Go to lawschool.westlaw.com

2. Sign in with your Onepass username & account

3. Click on WestlawNext in the top header feed

The Basic Search

Using the WestlawNext search bar is now easier and more efficient. Framed after a typical search engine *coughGOOGLEcough* this new searching format lets you merely type in keywords to produce a variety of results, from statutes, to law review articles, and much much more.

If you aren’t sure what keywords to use, then you can browse the different subjects, labels directly underneath the search bar. You can narrow the scope to just Federal or State materials, Topics and Tools.

When searching for State Materials in the State of California (for example) you can do a broad search, digging through all of the different types of content available for state legislature. You can also narrow the search by specifying exactly which content matter should be searched.


You can create folders on Westlaw to help organize your research once you find relevant documents. If you’re going to away from your computer and still want to access the files, you can export all of your search results to a PDF document for easy printing, or you can export the documents to your Kindle. You can also share folders with specific people listed in your contacts file. You can create subgroups and sub folders for study group meetings or specific class projects and assignments.


WestlawNext keeps a history of your conducted searches. If you forget how you found a certain document, you can always go through your history to relocate it, or retrace your steps. If you view all of the documents, they are broken down by content type in the left hand bar, allowing for an easier way to narrow down the search.


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