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CJN 321 Fall 2020: Policy Documents: Home

Organization Chart: United States Government

The United States federal government is a major source of public policies. Hence, the laws and regulations produced by the federal government and its agencies are public policy documents.

Laws & Regulations

Policy Documents are Primary Sources


Infographic: Establishment of policy > primary source > discussion thereof is a secondary source

Many topics will require a two-step process find the actual policy document:

  • A secondary source [journal or magazine article, Congressional Hearing] may discuss/identify a public policy.
  • Primary policy document [frequently a law or regulation, or a ruling in a court case].

Public Policy Debates