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Online Degree Overview

Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies

Dr. April Vance, Interim Department Chair, Legal Studies

This online Legal Studies program can give you a strong foundation in general education, analytical and critical thinking skills, theoretical legal concepts, and practical legal applications. Through our in-depth legal coursework, you can learn how to manage challenging assignments under the supervision of a licensed attorney.

Admission Requirements

General Undergraduate Admission Requirements

To be admitted to any of the undergraduate programs at South University, the prospective student must provide proof of high school graduation as recognized by the state of residence on the date the degree was earned, or the equivalent (e.g. GED with no single test score below 145 or numeric score equivalent to 2.0 on old version or state-issued certificate designated as the equivalent of a High School Diploma) with a minimum CGPA of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale. The prospective student must also complete the university administered placement tests prior to the start of the first quarter for campus students and during the first session of attendance for online students. South University accepts the International Baccalaureate Program diploma as meeting the requirement for high school graduation. Credentials earned outside the United States must be evaluated by a NACES or AICE-member credential evaluation service.  Please speak with an admissions representative for more information.

Students with less than the minimum CGPA of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale may meet admissions requirements by submitting a minimum combined SAT (Evidence-Based Reading and Writing, and Math) score of 700 or 900 on the old SAT, a combined ACT score of 18, or a satisfactory score on the university-administered admissions examination (see the Admissions Office) or meet the criteria established for acceptance as a transfer student.

Students with less than the minimum CGPA of 2.0 on a 4.0 scale may be admitted provisionally for two quarters. Failure to achieve a 1.5 CGPA in the first two quarters of attendance will result in dismissal.  Students may appeal the dismissal by following the Procedures for Appealing Academic/Financial Aid Dismissal Policy.

To facilitate the admissions process, unofficial documentation, such as copies of transcripts or grade reports, may be used to determine admission status. Transfer status cannot be designated, however, without some verifying documentation. Admissions test scores on university administered entrance exams will not be accepted from other universities. Prospective students must take a University administered admission exam, like the Accuplacer, at South University.

A student's failure to provide acceptable verification of proof of high school graduation within 5*/10 weeks of his or her start date will result in the following:

  • Removal from class
  • Cancellation of enrollment
  • No final course grades
  • No transcript

NOTES: Students who do not provide proof of high school graduation within the 5*/10-week period will not be responsible for any tuition and related fees.

South University may grant exceptions to the 5*/10-week period for unusual situations or circumstances.  All exceptions must be submitted to the office of the University Registrar for approval.

Please see the policy on GPA Calculation for Admission for additional information

*Effective March 22, 2022 - Students beginning classes at the Montgomery campus or High Point Off Campus Instructional Site will have five weeks to submit acceptable documentation. ​*Effective April 1, 2022 - Students beginning classes at the Richmond and West Palm Beach campuses will have five weeks to submit acceptable documentation.  *Effective May 31, 2022 - Students beginning classes at the Tampa and Orlando campuses will have five weeks to submit acceptable documentation. *Effective July 12, 2022 - Students beginning classes at the Austin and Columbia campuses will have five weeks to submit acceptable documentation. *Effective August 16, 2022 - Students beginning classes at the Savannah and Virginia Beach campuses will have five weeks to submit acceptable documentation.

 

Course Requirements

Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies: 180 Credits
Area I General Education Requirements: 64 Credits
Professional Development
Basic Communications
ENG1100 Composition I 4 Credit Hours
ENG1200 Composition II 4 Credit Hours
Choose one additional course from the list below:
Mathematics and Statistics (choose three)
Natural Sciences (choose two)
BIO1020 Biology I 4 Credit Hours
BIO1021 Biology II 4 Credit Hours
Social and Behavioral Sciences (choose three)
Area II Foundation Requirements: 40 Credits
BUS1038 Business Law I 4 Credit Hours
Elective Pool (eight courses or 32 credit hours)

Transfer students may transfer any course to help fulfill the elective pool requirements, provided the course meets the standards of the Credit for Transcripted and Non-transcripted Work policy found in the Academic Affairs section of this catalog.

Non-transfer students, with their advisor's consultation and approval may choose courses from any department recommended and listed course or more broadly from any course offered by South University. Work from other fields must include any required prerequisite courses in the elective field.

A course can be used to meet only one requirement in Area I, Area II, or Area III, but not simultaneously in two areas. Students should work with their academic advisor or counselor to be sure they are making appropriate course choices.

Outcomes

Legal/Paralegal Studies Curriculum

South University's Legal Studies (BS) and Paralegal Studies (AS) programs are designed to provide opportunities for students to prepare for a rapidly changing and challenging profession as a paralegal. The American Bar Association (ABA) defines a paralegal as "a person, qualified by education, training, or work experience who is employed or retained by a lawyer, law office, corporation, governmental agency or other entity and who performs specifically delegated substantive legal work for which a lawyer is responsible." Paralegals and legal assistants may not give legal advice, set fees, represent clients in court, or provide legal services to the public except as permitted by law. All students in South University Paralegal and Legal Studies programs receive instruction in legal ethics and how to avoid the unauthorized practice of law.  Paralegals and legal assistants may not give legal advice, set fees, or represent clients in court, and all students in South University legal studies programs receive instruction in legal ethics and how to avoid the unauthorized practice of law.

Coursework emphasizes development of keen analytical and critical thinking skills while fostering sensitivity to cultural and political diversity. Students use modern law office technology and software in courses taught in classrooms, computer labs, or in courses offered online through the Savannah campus. South University encourages students to commit to lifelong learning that is beneficial in obtaining employment following graduation and that may help them in advancing in their careers as paralegal professionals.

Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies

Offered at Online Programs

Note: Not all Online Program offerings are available to residents of all U.S. states. Please contact an admissions representative for further information.

The Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies degree program is designed to provide students with a broad academic background in general education, fundamental theoretical legal concepts, and practical applications. This program is designed for the student who has an interest in seeking an entry-level position upon graduation or who is ready to take the next step in his or her career in the legal field. The graduate will be prepared for challenging assignments, including investigating cases, researching the law, and preparing documents for litigation or business transactions, while working under the supervision of a licensed attorney.

The coursework is designed to emphasize development of keen analytical and critical thinking skills, while fostering sensitivity to cultural and political diversity. Graduates can pursue entry-level positions as paralegals in law firms, banks, insurance companies, governmental agencies and corporations.

Program Student Learning Outcomes

Graduates will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of procedural law and substantive law by successfully completing advanced or specialized legal assignments performed in a law office or any organization involved with legal processes under the supervision of an attorney.
  2. Demonstrate a proficiency in the skills required for the complexities of a modern technology-based law office.
  3. Demonstrate an understanding of professional and ethical standards expected of a paralegal in a broader spectrum of legal practice.
  4. Demonstrate enhanced communication skills, including public speaking, letter and memorandum writing, as well as complex legal drafting under the supervision of an attorney.
  5. Demonstrate advanced legal research, acute critical thinking, reasoning, and analytical approaches to legal problem solving.

Career Outlook

At South University, our partially online Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies can provide you with the relevant skills and experience to excel in an entry-level paralegal position within a:

  • law firm
  • bank
  • insurance company
  • governmental agency
  • corporation.

Online Classroom

Haven’t experienced online learning before or wondering what it’s like to earn your degree online at South University? While the mode of learning is different from the traditional classroom experience with added convenience and flexibility, we hold the same high standards of academic excellence in the online classroom. 

South University’s online programs combine a curriculum designed for student outcomes and a classroom designed for flexibility and engagement. Our online classroom learning platform, Brightspace, provides you with a host of features to enhance your learning experience, including:

  • Advanced media content
  • Personalized navigation
  • Simplified online learning atmosphere
  • Access to digital books
  • Emailing and instant messaging options

We provide more than just an online classroom, bringing a range of campus experiences and services online. In addition, the online classroom is accessible on the go via mobile devices and with tools like the Pulse App. Pulse helps you stay connected and on track with your course by providing a number of features such as course calendars, readings and assignments, feedback and grades, and announcements.

Read more about online requirements here. 

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Success STories

Outstanding Education for Remarkable Careers

We're committed to helping our graduates make an impact in their professional and personal lives. We applaud our alumni and the difference they make. Check out what some of our Criminal Justice & Legal Studies graduates have to say.

Vicki Tucci 1997
Vicki Tucci Grad Alumni
Class of '96
Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies-South University, West Palm Beach

“Ultimately, I would like to use my experience and law degree to become a judge. As a young, single mom still fleshing out a career, I felt so clueless about many things. It was that hunger for knowledge that led me to South University’s program in paralegal studies. I got so much more than a classroom education. I found friends, professional contacts, and a world of inspiration from being around people who wanted to see me at my best.”

Christopher Butler 2010
Christopher Butler Grad Alumni
Class of '10
Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice-South University, West Palm Beach

“I started my studies in Criminal Justice prior to my military service and needed to complete my degree. Criminal Justice allowed me to be of service to the community and this nation. South University gave me the educational credentials I needed to get the job advancements and opportunities that have gotten me where I am today in my career field.”

Alicia Parler 2010
Alicia Parler Grad Alumni
Class of '10
Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies-South University, Columbia

“The comradery among service men and women exists due to hardships and discipline soldiers confront together on a regular basis. More than anything, military life has taught me to appreciate my freedom as an American, something I took for granted before I joined. I learned self-discipline, which made me a better student, and ultimately, helped me realize my career aspirations. As soon as I stepped foot onto campus, and started contacting professors like Carolyn Horner, the whole experience from start-to-finish has been welcoming and encouraging.”

Linda Hunter 2010
Linda Hunter Grad Alumni
Class of '10
Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies-South University, Savannah

“I can go just about anywhere and say I have a bachelor's degree in Legal Studies from a university whose program is approved by the ABA, and professionals know what that means. I know my hard work and the degree will be noticed.”

blue cap and gown graduate icon
Peter Gross Grad Alumni
Class of '10
Associate of Science in Paralegal Studies-South University, West Palm Beach

“My classes at South University were inspiring, not just informative; a thorough curriculum absolutely gave me the background I needed to be hired immediately at my law office.”