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1st Steps to Using the Law Library

Help with using the catalog systems used by the law school and university as well as how to hunt for ebooks. The emphasis is on law materials.

Catalog System Changes

Search catalog and electronic resources.

As of late June, 2022, the now defunct Merlin catalog and electronic discovery system has changed to new systems called Folio and EBSCO, respectively.  The Missouri library system has prepared a web guide and a new video illustrating the new catalog, or rather electronic discovery system (EDS).  The law library director has prepared a video introduction to the new catalog/EDS, especially for the law school, available here.

An EDS searches more than the catalog. It also includes electronic items for which the library may have subscriptions, such as journals, news articles, or the library's electronic institutional repository.  The videos include information on how to search and update your account.

To view items checked out and due dates and to renew items, you must be logged in through the law library's link to "Search Catalog & Electronic Resources" button.  For non-univeristy affiliated patrons, a "guest account search" is available.

Our new EDS includes the UM System libraries. To search just the catalog (and not electronic journals and databases), follow the "Advanced Search" link and scroll down until you find a box to check for "Catalog Only." 

If your run a search without finding what you need, scroll down on the right side and select, "Search MOBIUS."  MOBIUS added over 70 academic libraries from Missouri, including the law libraries at Saint Louis University and Washington Univeristy.  From MOBIUS, you can link to searching "Prospector."  Prospecter adds the University of Denver, University of Colorado, and University of Wyoming.

Search Mobius Button

Known issues:

  • Our Proquest eBook service is neither up-to-date in the catalogs records, nor currently accessible when searching the EDS.  We rely almost exclusively on Proquest to update and suppliment our physical collection of scholarly book publications.  This makes it difficult to find recent materials and topics.  Solution: Click here to go directly to Proquest eBooks (also on the law library databases page).
  • The MOBIUS search feature only appears in the EDS/Catalog if you run a successful search returning some results.  If you don't get any results, you don't get the link.  Soulution: Click here to go directly to the MOBIUS catalog.
  • The EDS/catalog currently defaults to searching the whole system catalog, and the EDS layer does not highight law school databases or even have many of them.  For the former, the solution is to used the Advanced Search function to limit searches to the law library and law topics, and for the latter, it is to go to the law library database page (click here).

Stay tuned for more information.


The Online EDS/Catalog System

Many legal topics such as foreign, comparative, and international law require heavy use of the online EDS/catalog, often as the first step. Inter-library loan systems are also critical. In addition, the union catalogs (e.g., integrated catalog and user request systems) of MOBIUS and Prospector are available to the UM system.  Finally, the inter-library loan (ILL) systems provides access beyond the traditional systems through OCLC (WorldCat), the world's largest catalog.

EDS/Catlog and Inter-Library Loan System

Start with the EDS/Catalog (center gold ring):  the greater University of Missouri's collective library system, for quick response time and longest loan periods.

Then, go to MOBIUS, which has 77 public, academic, and special libraries in Missouri, and some 29 million items. If you can't find what you need or want to research further, go to Prospector (see image below).  Prospector is an alliance of libraries in Colorado and Wyoming (which include the University of Colorado, University of Denver, and University of Wyoming law libraries) and adds another 27 million items for searching.

Shows link in MOBIUS to Prospector

For information, see the MOBIUS and Colorado Alliance, in particular look at the flyer on the page to learn how it works with MOBIUS searches.

Finally, the world's largest catalog is WorldCat (outer ring) with 10,000 libraries across the world.  There is a free version on the web at (which can tell you which libraries close to you have an item), but we strongly recommend using our inter-library loan librarians handle the request by using the process and form at link.

How the Library of Congress Organizes the Field of Law