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Plan of Study

 

Due to the explosive growth of legal services now being requested in all sectors of our economy, there is a continuous demand for well-trained personnel in all facets of the legal process. The need for paralegals is so great that it is estimated that one paralegal will assist every three or four attorneys, and, in some areas of practice, such as corporate legal departments, there will be one paralegal hired for every attorney.

The nature of the paralegal’s position in the legal community requires individuals with a well-rounded educational background. Critical thinking and excellent communication skills are essential competencies of a paralegal and are included in courses in English, mathematics, humanities, social science, and basic science.

The technical curriculum has been designed to provide students with knowledge and skills in the role of a legal assistant, ethical requirements, legal research, analysis, the preparation of legal documents, litigation practice and procedure, real estate transactions, family law, administrative law, criminal law, and probate law and practice.

The Paralegal Studies Certificate (Post Baccalaureate Option) is designed for persons who currently possess a Bachelor’s, Master’s, or Ph.D. degree.

Paralegals have traditionally been utilized in legal environments that are intensive in both client contact and document preparation.

Upon completion of the Associate Degree in Paralegal Studies, the graduate will be able to:

  • Demonstrate proficiency in manual and computer-assisted research of legal questions and incorporate the same into properly cited memoranda of law.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the legal and ethical responsibilities of a legal assistant.
  • Demonstrate an ability to use municipal, county, state, and federal clerks of court, and other recording offices.
  • Prepare deeds, notes, and other documents for residential real estate transfer.
  • Draft documents required to complete family law matters.
  • Draft pleadings, motions and other documents within the applicable rules of evidence and procedure to prepare and complete civil and criminal litigation.
  • Prepare documents for use in corporate, partnership, and other business-related matters.
  • Draft wills, trusts, and other documents necessary for estate administration.
  • Describe the legislative and judicial functions of administrative agencies.

NOTE: Paralegals may not sign legal documents, appear in court, or give legal advice. All activities in legal matters must be supervised by a licensed attorney.

Paralegal Studies Associate Degree

Semester 1

Course Name Credits
ENGL 1100 Composition I  3
MATH 1050 Elementary Algebra 5
. or .
STAT 1350 Elementary Statistics  3
LEGL 1001 Introduction to Paralegal Studies & Ethics  3
LEGL 1002 Law Office Technology  3
COLS 1100 First Year Experience Seminar  1
TOTAL CREDIT HOURS . 13-15

Semester 2

Course Name Credits
ENGL 2367 Composition II  3
CSCI 1101 Computer Concepts & Applications  3
LEGL 1005 Torts & Contracts  3
LEGL 1011 Legal Research & Writing  3
TOTAL CREDIT HOURS . 12

Summer Semester

Course Name Credits
BIO 1127 Introduction to Environmental Science  3
SOC 1101 Introduction to Sociology 3
. or .
SOC 2380 American Race & Ethnic Relations  3
LEGL 2026 Administrative Law  3
LEGL 2024 Business Organizations  3
TOTAL CREDIT HOURS . 12

Semester 3

Course Name Credits
COMM 1105 Oral Communication 3
. or .
COMM 1110 Small Group Communications  3
LEGL 2012 Advanced Legal Research  3
LEGL 2005 Civil Practice & Procedure  3
LEGL XXXX Technical Elective - Refer to approved list  2
LEGL 2XXX Technical Elective - Refer to approved list  2
TOTAL CREDIT HOURS . 13

Semester 4

Course Name Credits
HUM XXXX Refer to approved list  3
LEGL 2014 Family Law  3
LEGL 2815 Legal Practicum/Seminar  2
LEGL 2XXX Technical Elective - Refer to approved list  2
PSY 1100 Introduction to Psychology  3
TOTAL CREDIT HOURS . 13
TOTAL DEGREE CREDIT HOURS  . 63-65

Technical Electives

The following courses are approved for technical elective requirements:

Litigation:
LEGL 2038 Insurance Law 2
LEGL 2043 Alternative Dispute Resolution 3
LEGL 2010 Criminal Law & Procedure 3
LEGL 2015 Electronic Discovery 3

 

Technology:
LEGL 2051 Computer Assisted Legal Research  2
LEGL 2050 Intellectual Property  3
CRJ 2021 Introduction to Cyberlaw  3

 

General Practice:
LEGL 2018 Probate  2
LEGL 2019 Real Estate  2
LEGL 2029 Certified Paralegal Exam Review  3
LEGL 2044 Debtor/Creditor Relations  2
LEGL 2023 Immigration Law  3

 

ADR:
LEGL 2072 Mediation  2
LEGL 2043 Alternative Dispute Resolution  3

 

Electives owned by other Degrees:*
LEGL 2064 Legal Environment of Business  3

*These cannot be used as electives in the Paralegal program.

GE-ART/HUMANITIES REQUIREMENT (SELECT ONE)

HART 1201 History of Art I  3
HART 1202 History of Art II  3
HIST 1111 European History to 1648  3
HIST 1112 European History since 1648  3
HIST 1151 American History to 1877  3
HIST 1152 American History since 1877  3
HIST 1181 World Civ I: Non-Western/Non-Amer/1500  3
HIST 1182 World Civ II: Non-Western/Non-Amer/Since 1500  3
HIST 2223 African American History I:  1451-1876  3
HIST 2224 African American History II:  1877-Present  3
HUM 1100 Introduction to Humanities  3
HUM 1270 Comparative Religions  3
MUS 1251 Survey of Music History  3
PHIL 1101 Introduction to Philosophy  3
PHIL 1130 Ethics  3

Paralegal Studies Certificate (Post Baccalaureate Option)

Semester 1

Course Name Credits
LEGL 1011 Legal Research & Writing  3
LEGL 1005 Torts & Contracts  3
LEGL 1001 Introduction to Paralegal Studies & Ethics  3
LEGL 1002 Law Office Technology  3
COLS 1100 First Year Experience Seminar  1
TOTAL CREDIT HOURS . 13

Semester 2

Course Name Credits
LEGL 2026 Administrative Law  3
LEGL 2024 Business Organizations  3
LEGL 2012 Advanced Legal Research  3
TOTAL CREDIT HOURS . 9

Semester 3

Course Name Credits
LEGL 2005 Civil Practice & Procedure  3
LEGL 2014 Family Law  3
LEGL 2XXX Technical Elective - Refer to approved list  2 - 3
TOTAL CREDIT HOURS . 8 - 9

Semester 4

Course Name Credits
LEGL 2XXX Technical Elective - Refer to approved list  2 - 3
LEGL 2815 Legal Practicum/Seminar  2
LEGL 2XXX Technical Elective - Refer to approved list  2 - 3
TOTAL CREDIT HOURS . 6 - 8
TOTAL CERTIFICATE CREDIT HOURS  . 36 - 39

Technical Electives

The following courses are approved for technical elective requirements:

LEGL 2010 Criminal Law & Procedure 3
LEGL 2015 Electronic Discovery 3
CRJ 2021 Cyber Law  3
LEGL 2018 Probate  3
LEGL 2019 Real Estate  3
LEGL 2023 Immigration Law  3
LEGL 2038 Insurance Law  2
LEGL 2043 Alternative Dispute Resolution  3
LEGL 2050 Intellectual Property  3
LEGL 2072 Mediation  2