Today LexisNexis is releasing results of an independent study commissioned by LexisNexis.  The study was conducted between August and September 2019 and included responses from 5,061 law students at 201 law schools. The survey was  conducted” to better understand  future lawyer attitudes, behaviors and key drivers of user preference in relation to legal research.”Access the full Next-Gen Legal Tech Report  here.

The press release states that the results indicate that Lexis Advance is preferred over Westlaw for legal research.   Since the report did not include a copy of the survey instrument,   I can not tell if Lexis is providing the results of all questions or only selected questions.  In addition, some questions refer to law students, others refer to “new lawyers” so i wonder if I am seeing the results of multiple surveys. I will report on the “preferred platform” results when I receive responses to my questions from Lexis.

In this post I will only be reporting on the results related to the drivers of preference and recommendations

Research Methodology

LexisNexis Legal & Professional commissioned PwC Research, a global center of excellence for primary research and evidence-based consulting services and part of PwC LLP in the UK, to undertake data collection and aggregate results for the LexisNexis study. 83,909 U.S. law students from 201 law schools were invited to participate in the study which ran between August 12, 2019 – September 9, 2019 and from which 5,061 responded.

Drivers of preference:  Ease of Use and finding information quickly are the top two drivers of use.


Next Gen Lawyers

  • 76% find analytics helpful for research
  • 77% say visualization tools make it easier to find research results.


Law Students Value Analytics. 76% of students said that legal analytics are helpful!

Only yesterday, I participated on a panel discussion on legal analytics. We speculated on how long it would take for lawyers to graduate from law school with an understanding of legal analytics. I am thrilled to see that law students are not only being exposed to analytics in law school but are grasping the value of analytics in practice.

Next-Gen Legal Tech Survey Recommendations

  • Equip attorneys with technology tools they value – so they work faster and smarter.
  • Provide access to training programs for new and established to users to learn new technologies.
  • Embrace the “know how” of they digital natives and look to them to contribute to training programs across the firms

Lexis has been a pioneer in adding a wide variety of visualization tools for legal research. These tools include:  color coding research terms to ease navigation, the predictive legislation “gauge,”  Lex Machina docket analytics charts, and Ravel Context judicial analytics charts. The impact of these research features is reflected in the survey results.

Stay tuned for a follow up post on the platform preferences reported in the tech survey.