Legal Resources: A Brief Guide

Maps, Data & Government Information Centre (MaDGIC)

The Maps, Data & Government Information Centre (MaDGIC), 4th floor, Bata Libary, is a specialized unit within the library that in addition to GIS and spatial/statistical data support, provides access and assistance with government publications and other resources issued by governments or their agencies.  

The government publications collection, print and online, is a rich source of primary materials, covering topics diverse enough to be of interest to every discipline. You can find information about the inner workings of government, locate a bill and all its amendments, read through transcripts of legislative debates, read Supreme and Federal Court case reports and much more.

For assistance with government publications, contact MaDGIC at




This guide is a brief introduction to legal resources. It is not intended to to be a comprehensive list of resources, but rather a starting point from which you can begin your research. 

This guide will also direct you to comprehensive guides hosted by law libraries at various Canadian universities and written by librarians with expertise in legal resources. Please keep in mind some of the resources in these external guides will be institution specific, so check back here to see which resources Trent subscribes to.

Doing legal research takes time. Give yourself plenty of time to do background research on your topic and explore the resources.

If you require assistance, please don't hesitate to contact us at  Please include as much information as you can about your assignment and topic.

Finding articles with Omni

Omni is the Library's academic search tool.  It is not specific to law, but you can use it to find resources about laws. Keep in mind, although Omni covers the majority of our resources, it does not cover all of the legal resources Trent has access to. There are specialized databases you will likely need to use for your research (see the Databases box in this guide). 

To find books, book chapters, and peer reviewed articles that discuss a specific law/act/statute or legislation related to a topic do a simple keyword search and use the Modify Your Results menu to narrow your search.  Example searches:

protecting canadians from online crime act

cyberbullying AND legislation AND canada

immunization of school pupils act

vaccination AND laws AND ontario


Legal Databases

Other useful databases

Government Websites

CanLII: How to Search for Case Documents

Legal Research Guides

Legal Citation