Research Guides

Successful Summer Strategies: Research in the Real World

Research in the Real World Starts Here:
Managing workload and multiple assignments

Expect some issues to arise in this respect. You may find yourself working on more than one assignment at a time, or being pulled away from one project to work on another. You may be working for more than one attorney.

  • Be flexible. The demands on your time may vary from not being busy enough to being expected to pull some all-nighters. Within reason, do your best to go with the flow. If you have special personal events such as weddings (especially your own) coming up during the summer that require your absence from the office, make sure that you inform the employer in writing as soon as possible, preferably at the time you are hired.
  • Keep accurate records of your research. Record what sources you looked at, what index or search terms you used, and the date on which you performed the research. Make your notes as thorough and intelligible as you can so that when you return to an assignment, you don’t have to start from scratch because you can’t remember what you did or can’t read your notes.
  • Keep accurate time records. This is a way to show your professionalism and good practice for the future.
  • Don't hesitate to ask your assigning attorney(s) to prioritize assignments if you find yourself inundated with deadlines. You may not make the right decision as to priorities, and it’s better to request advice than to err in deciding what project is most important, or to do a poor job because you’re trying to do an unrealistic amount of work.

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