This is the "Home" page of the "Study Aid Publications & Resources" guide.
Alternate Page for Screenreader Users
Skip to Page Navigation
Skip to Page Content
University of Minnesota Law School University of Minnesota Law Library

Study Aid Publications & Resources  

Lists of treatises, nutshells and other study aid resources by course/subject
Last Updated: Oct 18, 2014 URL: Print Guide RSS Updates

Home Print Page

About this guide

This Guide lists treatises, hornbooks, nutshells, and study aid publications in the Law Library.  All items are available on reserve in the Law Library, unless otherwise noted.  It includes selected DVD and online resources.  For bar exam review materials see the page of bar exam materials available on reserve.  For helpful advice in selecting and using study aids, see, "Study Aids: Proceed with Caution" by Amy L. Jarmon, Student Lawyer, Nov. 2013.

1L Courses

Civil Procedure || Constitutional Law || Contracts || Criminal Law || Legal Writing & Research || Property Law || Torts                   

2L & 3L Courses / Topics


* Includes climate change, natural resources and energy law.


Study Aid Series Available on Reserve:

The following study aid series are available for check out from the Reserve collection at the Circulation Desk:

  • Hornbooks (West)
  • Nutshells (West)
  • Examples & Explanations (Aspen)
  • Concepts & Insights (Foundation Press)
  • Law Stories (Foundation Press)
  • Understanding (Lexis)
  • Model Problems & Outstanding Answers (Oxford)
  • Inside (Wolters, Kluwer, Law & Business)
  • Mastering (Carolina Academic Press)
  • Sum & Substance Audio (West)  


Definitions of Treatises, Hornbooks & Nutshells

  • Treatises
    Treatises are legal texts that are often multivolume in size. Treatises can vary in terms of style and analysis but they generally provide a detailed survey of a particular field of law. See for example, Corbin on Contracts (Law Reserve KF 801.C65). Treatises are a secondary source and lack legal authority. However, because they are written by respected legal scholars they can carry considerable persuasive value depending on how highly the author and the treatise are regarded by the court.
  • Hornbooks
    Hornbooks are single volume texts that cover a particular area of law, often one that is also the subject of a law school course. They are usually written by law professors that are experts in a particular field of law. Hornbooks are primarily a study tool that, unlike casebooks, provide answers in a straight forward and narrative fashion to major questions in a particular area of law. In other words, hornbooks provide the "Black Letter" law.
  • Nutshells
    Nutshells are a series of paperback volumes published by West Group that cover various areas of law. Like treatises and hornbooks, Nutshells are usually written by legal scholars. However, Nutshells are more concise and provide more of an overview of the law versus the more detailed discussion and analysis found in treatises and hornbooks. Nutshells are meant to be used primarily a study tool and are rarely, if ever, cited by courts. Nutshells are often a good starting point for anyone wishing to become familar with a particular area of law. 

Locating Treatises, Hornbooks & Nutshells Covering Other Subjects

To find nutshells and hornbooks on other topics try searching MNCAT Discovery using the keywords nutshell, treatise or hornbook (as appropriate) and subject or descriptive term(s)

Example: nutshell real estate 

University of Minnesota Law Library
Walter F. Mondale Hall • 229 19th Avenue South • Minneapolis,MN 55455
Reference Desk: 612-625-4309 • Circulation Desk: 612-625-4300 • Contact Us


Loading  Loading...