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Welcome to the Frequently Asked Questions for US Constitutional Law (USC). The questions are divided into those for users and those for librarians. If you have a question that is not on this list, please contact us at onlinemarketing@oup.com.


Questions about US Constitutional Law

Questions about content 

Access Questions

16. Password questions

Questions for users 

Finding Information within US Constitutional Law 

22. Why am I unable to order by relevance when browsing?

24. What is the Oxford Law Citator and how do I use it?

Working with Content

26. Can I print text from USC?

27. Can I save sections from the text to PDF from USC?

Questions for Librarians 

Subscriber Services


Questions about US Constitutional Law

1. What is US Constitutional Law (USC)?

US Constitutional Law (USC) is available as part of the Oxford Constitutional Law product family. USC is cross-searchable with Oxford’s leading constitutional law resources and benefits from a modern, intuitive interface and sophisticated functionality. For more information, see the About page.

2. What is a Product Family?

This is a collection of digital law products which have been grouped within the same subject area or discipline. This means that a site can contain multiple sub-sites, which supports easy cross-searching and offers subscribers a variety of options for purchase.
  • Product Family: Oxford Constitutional Law
  • Products within the Product Family: Oxford Constitutions of the World, US Constitutional Law, the Max Planck Encyclopedia of Comparative Constitutional Law

3. Do I have access to everything in the Product Family? How will I know if I don’t have access?

Your access to the content will depend on the subscription that you or your institution has purchased. Even though you may not have a subscription to all of the products in a Product Family, you can search across all of the products. This means that you can see results from content you are not subscribed to, as well as content that you can access. ‘Protected’ results are indicated by a padlock icon or, in some cases, a line of text indicating that there are more results from a particular product. You can filter search results to view items with full-text access or filter to view the content that you don’t have access to. If you want to access content for which you do not have a subscription, we suggest that you complete a Recommend to Your Librarian form.

4. How can I get a quick overview of the features?

Please take a tour for a quick overview.

Questions about content

5. What content can be found within USC?

See the About page for full details.

6. How often is USC updated?

See Updating Program for more information.

Access Questions

7. I have forgotten my user name and password.

Only account administrators can reset passwords. Please see your librarian or administrator for help.

8. I am a subscriber and I can't access USC.

Please check that you have sent us your license agreement. Unless you are in a free trial period, we cannot give you access to the site until we have received and checked your signed license agreement.
a) Is it possible that some of your registration details are incorrect on our database?
If the IP address or addresses for your institution or the user name and password which you use to access USC are incorrect in our subscriber database you will not be able to access the site. Check with your librarian or account administrator, and ask them to follow the instructions below.
You need to log in to the site then select Subscriber Services from the top toolbar on any page, and then go to the appropriate Managing your account link for your territory. From there you can check that you are using the correct user name and password or that the correct IP addresses have been entered for your institution.

Once you have checked whether your IP address details are correct, please use the contact us section in Subscriber Services to tell us whether:

  • your IP address/es need to be corrected (if so, please supply the correct address/es)
  • your IP address/es are correct, but you still can't get access to ICMA.
b) Are you seeing any error messages when you try to log in?
Error messages appear above the login box on the Log in screen. These give some suggestions about why you may not be able to access the site. They may direct you to either your network administrator or to the contact us page.
c) Could your account be on hold?

Occasionally an account is put on hold if we have not received your subscription payment, or if your subscription or free trial has expired. In both of these cases we would usually have been in touch with you about this. Please contact us for more information about this.

d) If your institution holds a concurrent user license, it may be that your browser is not configured to accept cookies
Cookies are required for subscribers in order to control access to the service. If you see a cookie-related error message when you try to log in, then you need to enable cookies and try again. For more information, please contact us


9. After I enter my user name/password and click on "log in" and then try to search or use the indexes, I'm being bounced back to a blank log-in screen

It is possible that you are seeing an old page and need to alter your cache settings. To find out how to refresh your cache settings, please refer to the online help in your Browser.

10. Do you offer library card access to USC?

Yes, to access using your library card, use the login on the Home Page.

11. Our institution connects to the internet using NAT; can we access USC?

Our access control software will work fine with sites firewalled using NAT. In order to give you access, we just need to know which IP address ranges that the NAT software is masquerading as. Please contact us if you would like to do this.

12. Users with off-site access to USC

We do not allow remote access unless it is by a secure route e.g. Shibboleth, Athens or access via a VPN (Virtual Private Network). Please contact us for more information.

13. What is your policy on cookies?

Cookies are required for subscribers to USC in order to control access to the service. The default policy will be to use cookies for authentication. However, subscribers who have unlimited access licences for USC may choose to disable cookies and will still be able to use the service, but note that usage statistics related to user sessions will not be available.

14. Questions about proxy servers

a) Will our proxy server IP address(es) be enough to allow access to USC?
Yes. However, if you are accessing USC through a proxy server then you need to give us the IP address of the proxy server in order for you to access the USC site.

b) I've registered my proxy server IP address(es), but I can't access USC.

If you are shown as not logged in and have no access to full-text content then the IP address of your proxy server is not being recognised by the USC site. If this is the case, please contact us, giving us details of the problem.

c) After previously successful IP-authenticated access via a proxy server, why am I now being requested to sign in with a user name and password?

If there is no obvious technical solution to the problem, please contact your Internet service provider (ISP) to check whether they have changed their configuration in a way that might hinder your IP-authenticated access to the USC site.

15. Questions relating to IP addresses

a) How do I register a large number of IP addresses or change my institution's existing IP addresses?

Contact the office appropriate to your region with the list of IP addresses.

North and South America: oxfordonline@oup.com
Rest of the world: onlinesubscriptions@oup.com

Tip: remember to use the asterisk (*) wildcard character if you are registering an entire class of IP address, and condense IP ranges in the following way, e.g. nnn.nnn.1-30

16. Password questions

a) I've forgotten my site administrator password
Please contact us and specify whether you would like to be reminded of your password, or whether you would like to change it (along with details of what you'd like to change it to) and we will send you the details as soon as possible.
b) Can I distribute my site administrator user name and password to allow access for colleagues?
No, this is a restricted ID which should be kept in a safe place for use only by the librarian or site administrator. As access to ICMA for institutions is IP authenticated, your colleagues will be able to access service without a user name and password. If any of your colleagues requires a user name and password for off-site access to OLRL, please contact us.

Questions for Users

17. Can I receive alerts regarding news and updates to USC?

You can subscribe to an RSS feed from the Home Page, which delivers the latest information about new content wherever you want it.

18. How is the content digitized?

The full text of each treaty has been presented in Portable Document Format (PDF), optimized from the original book for online display and has a supporting structural markup in XML that facilitates browse and search. A checking process has been undertaken to ensure high levels of accuracy. Inevitably errors may arise during the digitization process. We welcome feedback from users which will enable us to correct the data displayed on the site.

Finding information within USC

19. What are the different ways of searching within USC?

There are two main ways in which you can carry out a search in USC:

- Quick Search

Enter specific terms or phrases in the quick search box at the top right of the screen. Boolean searching is supported. Phrases need to be in inverted commas (“”) and wildcards (* and ?) can be used (although note that wildcards do not work within phrase searches). Find more information on Quick search here.

- Advanced Search

This is used to search for terms within specific elements of the content (e.g. citation, date, title and full text). You can also search for multiple terms by adding rows to your search.

Find more information on Advanced search here.


20. I’m having difficulty searching by date in Advanced Search. What date format is required?

Supported date formats are as follows: YYYY, YYYY-MM, YYYY-MM-DD

You can also search between ranges of years using the format YYYY-YYYY


21. Can I work in an environment where all I can see is content from a single product within a Product Family?

In USC, users can choose to work either in the product context or in the family context. Most users will probably choose to start their research at the product level; i.e. at www.oxcon.ouplaw.com/home/usc, especially if they subscribe only to this product.
However, it is possible to search and browse the collections together using the family interface (www.oxcon.ouplaw.com). You can get to this from the product interfaces by clicking on Oxford Constitutional Law in the masthead or by conducting a quick search with the family selected via the radio buttons above the search box.
Note that in the family environment, results are shown by default for all collections in the family, whether or not you subscribe to them; however you will not be able to access the content via these results unless you have a valid subscription to the collection in question.

You can also tick the box at the top left of the search page to see only results from those subscribed products, so excluding results for which you do not have full text access.

If you want to return to work in the product context, click on US Constitutional Law in the product selector on the left of the OXCON home page and you will be sent to the USC product. When working in the product context, your search (including advanced search) and browse results are automatically limited to content within that product only.

22. Why am I unable to order by relevance when browsing?

Relevance is applicable to search only, as relevance rating relates to the occurrences of a search term within a piece of content, relative to occurrences in other pieces of content. Any item chosen within a particular browse category has equal weighting, so the results are presented in A-Z order by default. All other available sort orders may be applied to browse results.

23. What factors do you apply when ordering results by relevance?

There are a number of different factors applied when the products decide in which order they should return search results from a quick search. They include the number of times that the search term appears in the searchable chunk, and whether it appears in the title of the document. We are also able to add weightings for particular chunks or particular types of chunk to make them return further up or down the list.

24. What is the Oxford Law Citator and how do I use it?

The Oxford Law Citator is a state-of-the-art navigation tool which integrates the content of all online law resources from Oxford University Press, providing direct links between our case reports, primary materials, and value-added commentary. The Citator also contains records for many more referenced items, even if Oxford does not publish the full text, to give users paths to follow for their onward research.
To access the Citator record for a particular content item, click on the orange Citator logo within the item title, the Citator entry above the item’s table of contents, or any active link within the item text. For more information on how to use the Oxford Law Citator, visit its Help and FAQ.

25. Why does clicking on the Citator take meaway from the content in the product?

We have given users the choice as to how they use the Citator during their research. Either:
a) Left click on a link or the Citator icon to open the Citator record in the same window as you are now working; this keeps the journey linear (i.e. you will move away from the content item within the product to the equivalent Citator record in the same tab or window, so avoiding a multitude of open tabs); or
b) Right click and choose to open the Citator in a new tab/window, so allowing you to move between the full text item and corresponding Citator content.

When working in the Citator and moving between Citator record, these options still apply – right click if you want to open the next Citator records in a new tab.

Working with Content

26. Can I print text from USC?

You can print text from USC. To print a page, use the Printer icon in the Tools toolbar at the top of the page. A preview window will appear with the correctly formatted pages, minus the site navigation components. Please note that the privacy policy and legal notice apply.

27. Can I save sections from the text to PDF from USC?

To generate a PDF, navigate to the page and click the PDF button within the Tools toolbar. This can then be viewed on screen, printed, and saved for further use. Please note that the privacy policy and legal notice apply.


28. How much material can I legally print/save to PDF from USC?

You are restricted by Copyright to the amount of information that you can print or download. It is very important that you read the privacy policy and legal notice, which includes information on printing and downloading to PDF, before printing or downloading anything from USC.


Questions for Librarians

Technical questions — OpenURL, MARC Records, Usage statistics

29. Is USC OpenURL- compliant?

Yes, US Constitutional Law is compliant with version 0.1 of the OpenURL specification. To enable this feature in your institution, please access your account information in Subscriber Services. Oxford Constitutional Law also supports custom OpenURL resolver icons specific to your institution.

Also note that US Constitutional Law is integrated with Ex Libris' SFX Knowledge Base, ensuring that the site operates as both a source and target for OpenURL.

30. Does USC provide MARC records for subscribing institutions?

MAchine Readable Cataloguing records (MARC21 Records) are available for library professionals to download free of charge. Our records are NACO, SACO, and AACR2 compliant.
Click on the appropriate link on our Subscriber Servicesn page to download a MARC21 format file (.mrc) containing records of titles published in the latest content update, or of all the titles currently published in OLRL. Please note that you will require MARC record reader/editing software (such as MARC Edit) to load these files to your library system.
Please note that MARC records are available for online Law product titles and book titles published in online law products only.


31. How are the USC user statistics reports defined?

USC offers COUNTER-compliant statistics (following the Code of Practice for Books and Reference Works, Release 1) offering the following reports:

BR2: Number of Successful Section Requests by Month

BR4: Turnaways by Month and Service

BR6: Total Searches and Sessions by Month and Service


32. Can I see usage statistics for my library/institution?

Yes, COUNTER-compliant usage statistics are available to account administrators. To see your institution's usage statistics, follow the appropriate link in our Subscriber Services area (you'll need to use your administrator user name and password).


33. How often are COUNTER statistics made available?

COUNTER statistics are made available approximately 2 weeks after the end of the month.

Subscriber services — account information, browser compatibility, accessibility

34. How do I update my institution's subscription record?

To view your subscription details log in to the Subscriber Services site appropriate to your region.
Alternatively you can e-mail the office appropriate to your region giving details of what you would like us to change and we will contact you as soon as we have implemented the changes:
North and South America: oxfordonline@oup.com

Rest of the world: onlinesubscriptions@oup.com


35. On which browsers will USC display correctly?

USC is designed to display and function correctly on the following browsers or later:
  • Firefox 8 and 9
  • Safari 5
  • Google Chrome 17 and 18
  • IE8 and IE9
We recommend that you set your screen resolution to 1024x768 pixels for the optimum display and use of USC.

36. How do I use Subscriber Services?

Subscriber Services are only available to subscribers of USC who are logged in to the site. Usernames and passwords for Subscriber Services are only available to library administrators once you have logged in to the site, just choose the Subscriber Services link from the top toolbar on any page. Once on the Subscriber Services page, you will be required to enter your administrator username and password in order to access the following services:

View subscription information and IP addresses

View your institutional usage reports

If you are a subscriber and cannot log in to the USC Subscriber Services area, please contact us.

37. Is USC available at a discount to developing countries?

OUP has a developing countries programme which offers all of our online products either for free or at a discount (50-80%) to educational establishments and public institutions in selected territories. To see which countries are eligible for either of these offers please visit this page for further information.