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Associate of Science in Paralegal Studies

Earn Your Paralegal Degree in as Little as 19 Months

At South University, our Paralegal Studies program features specialized coursework and a supervised externship in a legal setting. See how we can prepare you for a career in the legal field in as little as 19 months in our partially online program or 24 months at a campus near you.

Program is offered at the following campuses. Select a campus to learn more.

Campus

Learn How to Become a Paralegal

Paralegals and legal assistants need specific technical skills and knowledge to be effective. The associate’s degree in Paralegal Studies program at South University can equip you with the necessary paralegal training, education, and relevant experience for becoming a paralegal and being successful in this important role.

Our Paralegal Studies program is designed to prepare you to perform many tasks under the supervision of a licensed attorney in a legal office. You’ll have the opportunity to learn skills and best practices for interviewing clients and witnesses, preparing legal documents, and otherwise assisting attorneys with preparing for their cases. Our campus and partially online paralegal programs can also help you to develop keen analytical and critical thinking skills and a sensitivity to cultural and political diversity.

Our partially online paralegal degree program can be completed in as little as 19 months, while our campus paralegal programs can be completed in as little as 24 months.

Build the Knowledge You Need for a Paralegal Career

Lawyers depend on their paralegals and legal assistants to help them get ready for trials, meetings, and hearings. Our Paralegal Studies program can prepare you to work under attorney supervision in entry-level paralegal positions and to perform general background work for the legal firm.

After earning your associate’s degree in Paralegal Studies, you’ll be able to:

  • Apply knowledge of procedural law and substantive law to successfully complete routine legal assignments in a law office or other organization involved with legal processes under the supervision of an attorney.
  • Understand the needs of a modern technology-based law office.
  • Follow and understand the professional and ethical standards expected of a paralegal.
  • Display effective communication skills, including public speaking, letter and memorandum writing, and legal drafting under the supervision of an attorney.
  • Conduct legal research using analytical and critical thinking skills, including reasoned approaches to legal problem solving.
This paralegal associate’s degree program can also serve as your first step on the path to earning a Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies.

Gain Practical Paralegal Training & Experience

At South University, our general education requirements in the Paralegal Studies program can give you a solid foundation in professional development, communications, math, natural sciences, arts and humanities, and social and behavioral sciences. Following that, you’ll take paralegal courses that explore topics such as:

  • Business law
  • Law and ethics in the legal field
  • Torts and remedies
  • Legal research and writing
  • Civil litigation
  • Family law
  • Estate planning and probate
  • Criminal law
  • Computers in the legal office
Depending on your area of interest, your elective paralegal courses can allow you to explore:
  • Real estate law
  • Worker's compensation law
  • Bankruptcy law
  • Administrative law
Our paralegal degree program culminates in a 120-hour supervised externship, in which you can practice and apply the skills learned in your paralegal courses. In this externship, you may work in a private legal office, government agency, real estate or title company, bank, or corporate legal department to perform the legal and administrative duties appropriate to the paralegal field. In addition to the onsite paralegal training and experience, you’ll also regularly meet with the extern coordinator and other students for relevant discussions and support.

Paralegal Education Requirements & Program Admissions

To be accepted into our campus or partially online paralegal programs, you must meet all standard university admissions requirements for undergraduate programs. Scholarships and financial aid are available to those who qualify. For questions about admissions or financial aid, call us at 1.800.688.0932.

The partially online paralegal degree program allows students to take the majority of their general education and paralegal courses online. However, all students in the partially online paralegal associate degree program must complete at least 4 legal specialty courses (comprising at least 16 quarter hours of credit) in a traditional classroom format.

Job Outlook After Finishing Paralegal School

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of paralegals and legal assistants is anticipated to grow by 15%—resulting in 41,800 new jobs—from 2016 to 2026, much faster than the 7% average growth across occupations.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of paralegals and legal assistants is anticipated to grow by 15%—resulting in 41,800 new jobs—from 2016 to 2026, much faster than the 7% average growth across occupations.

End your search for the right paralegal school with South University. Request more information today about how to become a paralegal and how a paralegal degree program can prepare you to pursue work in this growing field.

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