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Student Guide to the Judge Ben C. Green Law Library

This is a guide to help students enrolled in any law course maximize their use of the Judge Ben C. Green Law Library.

Curricular Support

Course Reserves
You may check out course reserve materials for a 2-hour loan period in the law school building. Because they are in high demand, these materials are kept behind the circulation desk and are available on a first-come first-served basis. Staff cannot hold reserve items for specific patrons. The fine for returning course reserve materials late is $1 per hour, per item

Course Evaluations
Online course evaluations from spring 2011 until the present may be found on our website.

Amenities for Law Students
We offer phone chargers, Macbook power adapters, and bookstand standing desks for a 2-hour renewable check out. Earplugs are also available at our circulation desk.

Student Journals
Lisa Peters created this LibGuide that details library services for student journals.

Cite Checking
Lisa Peters created this LibGuide to aid with student cite checking.

Personal Research Consultation (PeRC)
If you need research instruction beyond what is taught in class, you are encouraged to schedule a Personal Research Consultation with one of our librarians. This curriculum-support service is helpful for research papers, notes, other course-related projects and extracurricular endeavors, such as moot court, citation checking and similarity report analysis.

Law librarians are assigned based on a combination of availability and special expertise and will contact you to arrange an appointment. Please visit the reference desk in person during normal reference desk hours if you need immediate research assistance.


Study Areas

We have a variety of study areas to meet the needs of our students. There are individual study carrels on the 3rd floor and in the Richey Reading Room of the library, which is a designated quiet zone on the lower level. The Davis Room, located at the west end of the first floor of the library, is excellent for quiet study and enjoying the views of University Circle and the Cleveland Botanical Gardens.

Eight study rooms are located on the 3rd floor of the library. All of the study rooms are equipped with technology, including a computer, TV and Intel Unite. The rooms may be reserved for groups of two or more for a maximum time of 3 hours per day. Reservations can be made up to two days in advance and are taken on a first come, first served basis.

Scheduling a Study Room

  • Login with your network ID and password.
  • Choose the day within the calendar that you would like to reserve
  • Click on the room and time on the grid to begin making your reservation.

If no group has reserved a study room, an individual student may use the room with the understanding that they may be asked to leave by a group with a reservation. The same library food and drink policies apply to the small group study rooms and are posted on the doors. Please remember that the rooms are not soundproof, so be considerate of your fellow classmates studying around you.

Borrowing Non-CWRU Material

If an item you are looking for is not available at CWRU because it has been checked out or is not in the library’s collection, you may order an available item through OhioLINK. A request button is located in each record. When requesting an item for delivery, you must select CWRU from the pull-down menu. Then enter your network ID (the portion of your email address before and password. You may select delivery to any library on campus, including our law library.

You may request books that are available neither on campus nor via OhioLINK by placing an Interlibrary Loan (ILL) request. Journal articles not available on campus or in electronic format can also be ordered via ILL. You may place and track your own ILL requests using the ILL management system. For best service, contact a reference librarian to determine availability of a resource before placing an ILL request in ILLiad, or refer to this guide.


 Masks are optional 


 Social distancing is encouraged 
6 ft


 Noise & Conversation

All students should be courteous and work together to maintain a good study environment. Students are encouraged to ask students who are being loud to please keep their voices down. The third floor is a quiet study area. If the noise is bothersome and continues, suggest the other areas that are not quiet, like the first floor, a study room, or Room 321. If it does not work, the student is encouraged to report it to the circulation desk on the first floor. Caveat: the study rooms allow normal conversational levels of speech. They are not soundproof; thus, please be respectful of other patrons when in study rooms.

Each floor has a different noise policy: 

3rd Floor: The 3rd-floor area is quiet except for the study rooms and room 321. Students are to keep conversations very short and in a low speaking voice. Any cell phone use needs to be conducted in a study room or outside the library, i.e., the bridge or Ben's Place. The use of any other popular video-chatting app is to be conducted in a study room or outside the library. Lengthy conversations also need to go outside the library.

1st Floor: The 1st floor is not strictly quiet. Many services are rendered on the first floor so it can be noisy. One quieter area on the first floor is the Davis Room, located at the west end of the library's first floor.

Ground Floor: The ground floor is another designated quiet area.

 Cell Phones

The Library knows you "want to stay in touch," but ringing phones and loud cell phone conversations add unnecessary noise making it difficult for many people to study and work. Be considerate to others: turn off the cell phone ringer or switch to silent-vibrate mode in the library. Put the call on hold and move outside the gates to talk.

 Food & Beverages

Foods that are usually eaten hot, can disturb others around you, emit odors, and/or are messy therefore are prohibited in the law library. Small, vending style snack food and non-alcoholic beverages in spill-proof containers with tight fitting lids, are permitted in the library with the exception of the computer labs. Patrons are required to comply with signage and staff requests where and when food and/or covered drinks can be consumed. Please consume food in a responsible manner and dispose of trash in waste and recycling containers provided.

 Study Rooms

Third floor study rooms are for CWRU Law students only.


Members of the CWRU community with appropriate authentication and persons with current a CWRU ID have check-out privileges. Bring the items you want to take out of the library to the Circulation Desk to be checked out.  Return books to the Circulation Desk during library hours.

Loan periods / Fines: Loan periods and fines vary depending on the status of the borrower and the type of material checked out.

Renewals: You may renew books by contacting Circulation in person, by phone (216-368-2792) or by using the My Library Account found on the catalog home page. To renew books in person or by phone, you will need your CWRU ID. Materials from Course Reserve and the Reference Area cannot be renewed. These materials should be returned to the Circulation Desk.

Overdue Fines: Case Law Library monographs accrue fines at the rate of 0.25/day. Other fines for special loans, recalled items, etc. may apply. OhioLINK overdue fines (0.50/day for monographs) cannot be waived for any users. Interlibrary Loan Materials fines accrue at a rate of 0.50/day. For lost Case Law Library Materials, patrons will be charged $110.00 for each lost item.
Reserves: Frequently used legal materials, including nutshells, treatises, hornbooks, practice guides and other miscellaneous materials are located on the first floor of the library and to the right of the circulation desk. These items do not circulate. Only Law Faculty may check them out.

DVD Collection: The Judge Ben C. Green Law Library DVD collection is located on the first floor of the Library. Please see the circulation staff for help with this collection. A video-specific search tool is located here and allows you to limit your search to the law library. Only CWRU students, faculty and staff can check out DVDs from the law school.

Damaged Books: You are responsible for any damage that occurs to an item while it is checked out to you. A book is considered “damaged” if it is returned to the library in a condition that requires extensive repair OR is unable to be repaired and cannot be returned to circulation. Examples of damaged books include, but are not limited to, those with water damage, mold, writing on the inside of the book, torn or missing pages, and/or damage to the outside of the book. Damage will be assessed by the Library Staff, who will determine if the book can be repaired. Fines will be assessed according to the severity of the damage and range from $10.00 up to the replacement cost of the book or the total repair costs if the book cannot be replaced. If you wish to check out a book that is already damaged, please show the damage to the circulation desk staff. We will make a note in the record, so as not to hold you responsible when the book is returned.

 Feedback / Suggestions / Complaints

Joseph A. Custer 
Associate Professor of Law & Law Library Director