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The Bluebook

This research guide helps law review students and students writing academic papers for law school with The Bluebook.


The Bluebook can be daunting, and no one is perfect at it. Regardless, if you are on law review and/or are writing an academic paper for law school, you want to make the sources comply with The Bluebook

As far as bluebooking goes, start with the easy, low-hanging fruit first. This research guide will give you some of those basics. Then, talk to a law librarian for harder sources when you are in doubt. Remember--academic papers published in law reviews or required for your law school class will use the white pages of The Bluebook. You will likely only use the blue pages for your 1L legal research and writing courses. The citations in the white pages will be different than you are used to, so please pay attention to that.

The most current version of The Bluebook is the 21st edition from 2020. You can use it in the Reserve Room in the BYU Law Library or borrow a copy from the Reference Desk if you don't have your own copy with you. The Reference Desk also has online access to The Bluebook, and a reference employee can use it to look up rules with you quickly as well.

For the example citations in this research guide, you can look up the rule in The Bluebook to see an explanation of what each part of the citation stands for (author, publisher, year published, page number, volume number, etc.)

For further research assistance after consulting this research guide, make an appointment with the reference librarian who created this research guide: Annalee Hickman Pierson (


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