Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Westlaw Law School Exchange

One of the products that impressed me most this year was Westlaw's Law School Exchange. It seemed to address a lot of the gripes that I had about online text books, and it has some other useful features. This product is for passwords with faculty status.

West has divided its marketing of Law School Exchange into three categories: Share, Publish, and Collaborate.

You can upload PDFs, Photos, PowerPoints, Word Documents and Mutlimedia files. This is a good way to share articles and syllabi with colleagues. You can easily share documents under the Materials tab.

This feature has the ability to integrate with TWEN and allows distribution of course materials. Don't forget to mindful of copyright! West Academic Publishing and Foundation Press materials are available. Text books can be viewed in a document viewer. This is the feature that I saw that impressed me. You could highlight portions of the text as well as annotate. From what I was told, this feature would come for a fee to students.

You can join groups and add colleagues. This allows you to reach beyond your school for guidance and provides networking opportunities.

Other things to note
There are tabs for Collections and Blogs that are in development. Also, the version I saw at AALL seems to be a bit different, so it took some getting use to. Additionally, you have to log in with your unique Westlaw password.

To join Law School Exchange go to http://exchange.westlaw.com/ and click on create an account. You will need your Westlaw password (the unique numeric-alpha password, not your custom password). Next, you select the areas you teach in, you also have the option of adding areas that you are interested in. You then must agree to the terms of use and then you can register.

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