Free and Low Cost Course Materials
Textbook costs have risen at two to three times the rate of annual inflation over the past several decades. This guide lists free and low cost casebooks, casebook development platforms, and resources faculty can use to develop coursepacks.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org with questions about these resources or open access publishing.
- The eLangdell Bookstore - The open access publishing wing of CALI, the eLangdell Bookstore provides free casebooks on many law school topics written by distinguished law school professors and experts.
- Semaphore Press - Semaphore press provides a selection of case books on a small but growing number of topics. Casebooks are $30 for a digital edition or around $70 for a print edition, depending on the casebook.
- Open Textbook Library - A curated collection of open textbooks either in use at multiple higher education institutions or “affiliated with a higher education institution, scholarly society, or professional organizaton.” While some of the legal titles are relisted casebooks from the eLangdell Bookstore, there are several original titles in this collection. The platform allows for user reviews that faculty can reference when considering whether to adopt a particular textbook.
Individually Published Free & Low Cost Casebook Titles
If you are aware of additional individually published resources that should be added, email email@example.com so that we may update the list.
Free Casebooks and Textbooks
- James Boyle & Jennifer Jenkins, Open Intellectual Property Casebook (5th ed. 2021).
- Samuel W. Buell, Corporate Crime, an Introduction to the Law and Its Enforcement (2021).
- Barton Beebe, Trademark Law: An Open-Source Casebook (8th ed. 2021).
- Sarah Burstein et. al., Patent Law: An Open-Access Casebook (2021).
- Stephen Clowney, et al., Open Source Property: A Free Casebook (2016).
- Gerry Ferguson, Global corruption: Law, theory & practice (3d ed. 2019).
- Jeanne C. Fromer & Christopher Jon Sprigman, Copyright Law: Cases and Materials (ver. 3.0 2021).
- Brian L. Frye & Elizabeth Schiller, Professional Responsibility: An Open-Source Casebook (2019).
- Thomas Kadri, Tort Law: Cases & Critique (2021).
- Gary Myers, Copyright Law: An Open Source Casebook (2019).
- Jonathan S. Masur and Lisa Larrimore Ouellette, Patent Law: Cases, Problems, and Materials (2020).
- Richard White & Tina Bynum, Homeland Security: Safeguarding the U.S. from Domestic Catastrophic Destruction (2016).
- Corey Rayburn Yung, Criminal Law (2d. ed. 2021).
- Corey Rayburn Yung, Sex Crimes (2d ed. 2021).
Low Cost Casebooks
- Donald H. Beskind, Doriane Lambelet Coleman, Torts: Doctrine and Process (2020).
- Eric Goldman, Advertising & Marketing Law: Cases & Materials (5th ed. 2020).
- Eric Goldman, Internet Law: Cases & Materials (2021).
- Peter S. Menell, Mark A. Lemley, and Robert P. Merges, Intellectual Property in the New Technological Age, 2 v. (2021).
- Pressbooks - Pressbooks builds on a Wordpress framework to simplify the development of Open Educational Resources (OER) books. It provides a range of textbook design templates and a cover creation tool. Textbook publication costs $99 per book, not edition, and includes online hosting and export to PDF or eBook formats. It also has a vibrant user community with additional development resources and guides.
- H20 - Developed by Harvard, the H20 platform facilitates the creation of casebooks. Authors can import US case law directly into the casebook and elide text to only the relevant portions. The platform allows for authors to write introductory text or create annotations for each case.
- Additionally, authors can include standalone scholarship and link to external resources. Interested authors can preview capabilities in the Library’s Example Casebook.
As a hybrid approach, faculty can create coursepacks that are free to students by incorporating digital materials from one of the library databases and copyright-compliant scans of print materials (ask your Faculty Assistant for information on copyright clearance for scans of larger portions of books). Link directly to Bloomberg Law, Lexis+, Westlaw Edge, HeinOnline, or JSTOR using the Law Library's Proxy Link Builder tool.
In addition, the Library collection includes a range of e-books with detailed legal coverage, such as Blockchains, Smart Contracts, Decentralised Autonomous Organisations and the Law and Philosophical Foundations of Law and Neuroscience. The Law Library purchases nearly all law-related Edward Elgar and Oxford University Press e-books with multiple simultaneous user licenses. If you do not see a specific title available in our catalog, please send the information to the reference mailbox for purchase consideration.
Below are some additional resources that can be useful in preparing a coursepack.
- American Law Institute Library - This library includes historic, current, and draft Restatements, as well as the Uniform Commercial Code and other model codes.
- Legal Information Institute - Free online text of federal and state constitutions, statutes, and regulations, court rules, federal rules of procedure, and uniform laws.
- National Survey of State Laws - Tables of state laws on 60 legal topics. Each topic includes an editorial introduction to relevant issues.
- Oxford Bibliographies in International Law - Encyclopedic articles on more than 150 international law topics, with extensive research references to sources like textbooks, treaties, case law, and commentaries.
- Oxford Constitutions of the World - Current and historical constitutions for the U.S. government and the 50 states, as well as worldwide.
- Oxford Historical Treaties - Contains the full text of treaties from 1648-1919 from Clive Parry's Consolidated Treaty Series; also regularly updated with additional expert commentaries on treaty-related research topics.
- West Academic Study Aids - This database includes the full Hornbook series database and the Law Stories series. Hornbooks provide in-depth coverage of different areas of law. The Law Stories series covers a curated collection of major cases in an area of law in narrative format, providing context unavailable in court opinions themselves.
- Wolters Kluwer Study Aids - This database includes the popular Examples & Explanations Glannon Guides series, among other offerings.
- I. Glenn Cohen, Civil Procedure (2021).
- Charles Fried, Contracts Casebook (2017).
- Frank Snyder & Mark Edwin Burge, American Contract Law for a Global Age (2020).
- Lawrence Lessig, Constitutional Law (2019).
- Corey Rayburn Yung, Criminal Law (2d ed. 2021).
- Stephen Clowney, et al., Open Source Property: A Free Casebook (2016).
- Steve Semeraro, An Introduction to Property Law in the U.S. (2019).
- John Fabian Witt & Karen Tani, Torts: Cases, Principles, and Institutions (2019).
- Jonathan Zittrain, Torts Playlist (2018).
- Oxford Press Open Access Titles - Monographs on a range of potentially relevant topics like bioethics, gender equity, infrastructure, education, and government policy.
- Rebus Community - A global community supporting the development of OER materials by providing editors avenues for collaboration and guidance on publishing.
- Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC) - SPARC is a global coalition promoting Open research and education and developing initiatives in support of that goal, including transparency projects like the Big Deal Knowledge Base.
Updated 11/2021 REG