Thursday, July 2, 2009

The Cure for Lonely Research: Talk to ILP

When searching for law review and legal journal articles, researchers often make the choice between LegalTrac ( and Index to Legal Periodicals ( out of necessity: LegalTrac is available to off-campus users with a NetID, while Index to Legal Periodicals (ILP) must be accessed from a computer on the Law School network.

However, a new feature of ILP may be worth the trip to the Law School. For articles in ILP where full text is provided, the database’s ReadSpeaker tool converts the full text into a downloadable audio MP3. Like AudioCaseFiles (previous blog post), this is a great service for auditory learners or students for whom English is a second language, such as foreign LL.M candidates.

How does it work? If you’re on the Law School network, view an article in ILP, such as this 2006 interview with recent Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor (from that link, click the option to view full text via Index to Legal Periodicals; once you’ve entered the ILP database, select the “Full Text (HTML)” view option to read the article). The link to “Listen” will be at the top of the page. If you’re off-campus (or still confused), check out WilsonWeb’s video demonstration of the new service at

What if your iPod is full, or audio isn’t your thing? ILP also offers an option to translate every full-text article into ten languages, including Arabic, Spanish, Portuguese, Chinese, Korean and Japanese. The Goodson Blogson can’t vouch for the accuracy of the translations, so tell us your impressions in the comments.