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Education Law: Legal Citations

Citing Legal Materials

Users of legal materials commonly use a different citation style, known as Bluebook, when citing legal materials.  The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (APA) defers to Bluebook citation format for the following types of legal materials:  Court decisions (explained on pages 216-218 of the 6th edition of the Publication Manual); Statutes (pp.219-221); Legislative materials, such as hearing testimony (pp. 221-223); Administrative and Executive Materials (pp. 223-224). You can also refer to the Bluebook itself for examples.

The standard Bluebook citation for a court decision looks like this:

Brown v. Board of Educ., 347 U.S. 483 (1954).   (If you didn't already know -- this one is a Supreme Court decision.)


Keep in mind that law review articles are cited in APA format, just like any journal article.

On the Citation Tools page, you will find some web sites for help with both APA and Bluebook citation style.