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Introductory Guide for First Year Students

This guide will help new law students get started with Law School and become more familiar with the Law Library.

What Is Reference?

Beyond providing access to materials like books, videos, and online content, reference service is one of the most fundamental things that we do at the Law Library. The Reference Desk is a physical place in the library (see picture below), but Reference is the service we provide. Reference services can include any of the following:

  • Research assistance
  • Research Methods and Advanced Legal Research help when permissible by the professor
  • Topic brainstorming
  • Bluebook help
  • Finding case filings
  • Directing you to other law school resources

GSU Law Library Reference Desk

How Do You Access Reference

Of course you can always "Come see us at the reference desk!"  However, we know that coming to the desk isn't always convenient for folks. To meet you where you are, we are providing reference services in the following ways:

  • In-person reference at Reference Desk in the library
  • Chat Reference (see picture below) - Our chat reference is available at and staffed during normal reference hours.  Ask any question you'd normally ask in person. If we need to set up a call or video conference, we can. 
  • Phone - We're happy to discuss research over the phone. Usually, we can take phone calls right away, but we may not be able to talk immediately if we are helping a patron in person. You can reach us at the reference desk at 404-413-9102.
  • Virtual Consultations - We can meet virtually on the fly, if you call or chat with us and want to switch to share screens. If you want to set up a consultation with a specific librarian, reach out to them directly.
  • Email - Feel free to email the reference desk at If you'd like, you are always welcome to reach out to your Research Methods Professor or Personal Librarian.

Typical reference hours are provided below. 

Chat Reference Box

Who, What, When?


The Reference Desk is typically staffed as described in the table below. See for exact hours.

Monday - Thursday Friday Saturday - Sunday
8:30 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. 8:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. 1:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.

Meet Our Reference Librarians

Reference is staffed by professional librarians and occasionally by well-trained Graduate Research Assistants.  All Reference Librarians at Georgia State College of Law have both a Law and Library graduate degree and teach legal research courses, representing a wealth of legal research experience. They're also super nice!

Pam Brannon

Pam Brannon

Coordinator of Faculty Services

Meg Butler

Associate Director for Public Services

picture of Gerard Fowke

Gerard Fowke

Digital Services Librarian

picture of Terrance Manion

Terrance Manion

Discovery and Research Services Librarian

picture of Patrick Parsons

Patrick Parsons

Coordinator of Reference and Instruction Services

Headshot of Professor Michelle Hook Dewey

Michelle Hook Dewey

Legal Technologies Librarian

Research Guides

You may find answers to some of your research questions by consulting the library's Research Guides. We create the guides around specific subjects, with each designed to provide an accessible introduction to a specific research topic.

We also provide some guides that are helpful for general law topics, rather than research subjects. Examples include:

Disclaimer: The views and opinions of the authors expressed herein do not necessarily state or reflect those of the State of Georgia, and shall not be used for advertising or product endorsement purposes. Georgia State University College of Law and the authors of the works contained on this website do not assume or accept any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, currentness, or comprehensiveness of the content on this website. The content on this website does not in any manner constitute the issuance of legal advice or counsel. The information on this website is intended to provide resources that may aid the research of the topics presented, and are in no way a comprehensive list of sources one should consult on the topics presented. Please note that case law, statutory law, and administrative law may be modified and/or overturned. Additionally, because the laws vary between jurisdictions, the laws referred to herein may or may not be applicable to the law within the reader’s jurisdiction.