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Legal Research Certification Program (Prepare to Practice): Lesson Five- Telescoping Out

Modules and lessons for excellence in legal research and research strategies.

Preparing to Practice

21 U.S.C. § 331 prohibits misbranding food and drug products. Use the Table of Contents on Westlaw to find the nearby statute establishing criminal penalties for a violation of § 331.

16 U.S.C. § 1538 prohibits the taking of endangered species. Use the Table of Contents on Lexis to find the nearby section defining the term "take" under §1538.


Once you have found an on-point statute, you should browse nearby sections of the U.S. Code for related statutes. This technique is called "telescoping out," an essential step for catching important statutes that you may have otherwise missed. After watching this video, take the quiz. If you want extra practice on this topic, check out the "preparing to practice" column in the lower left corner.

"Telescoping Out"

00:00​ Introduction

00:28​ Telescoping out on Lexis

01:46​ Telescoping out on Westlaw


Next Lesson

Congratulations! You have completed all of the lessons in Module 3, Federal Statutory Research. Complete the Final Assessment for practice using these research methods.