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Social Welfare Policies and Services II: SSW 5006

Library and other research resources for students in SSW 5006, Social Welfare Policy and Services II

Ways to search federal and state bills and laws

Below are three main ways to search for state and federal bills or draft legislation and laws.  Depending on what form it is in, a law or legislation may be called a slip law, session law, act, statute, code. At the bottom of this page are additional links to resources for searching legal contents.

  1. Search the government legislative website. Documents would be available for free.
  2. Use reputable free to search websites, such as like Legiscan, with links to PDF on the government websites, and the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) with browsing by topic and comparison features.
  3. Search within library subscription databases, such as Westlaw Campus Research and Nexis Uni databases (requires Temple AccessNet ID), with access to full text, related legal contents, and additional functions.  You can use Library Search to search for and access individual bill tracking databases on Westlaw Campus Research, cases, and other legal materials.

Search Bill Tracking and Statutes in Library Search

Enter a state name or "Federal" and "Bill Tracking" or Statutes in Library Search and look for results under "Books&Media" or "Journals" for a link to the Westlaw Campus Research database.

Federal Bills

Useful information for searching from the Library of Congress

The CRS Legislative Subject Terms is a set of about 1,000 terms, including those that describe geographic entities and government organizations, for use with CONGRESS.GOV beginning with the 111th Congress. Terms assigned to legislation from the 110th and earlier Congresses came from a list that was based upon a thesaurus known as the Legislative Indexing Vocabulary (LIV).  Legislative analysts from the Congressional Research Service (CRS) closely examine the content of each bill and resolution to assign Policy Area Terms and Legislative Subject Terms. The Legislative Indexing Vocabulary (LIV) is an older CRS thesaurus that was discontinued in 2008. Terms from all three subject vocabularies can be used to enhance CONGRESS.GOV research

State Bills

You can search bills and legislation for a state by going to the state government website, which you can find using the State Legislative Websites. If you use other sources, once you have your bill or law, visit the state government website for information and resources.

Laws and Regulations

Related Library Guides

Legal Research and Search Guides