There are a number of situations in legal proceedings where we come across legal experts such as lawyers, judges, attorneys, and paralegals. While most of these professionals play a key role in presenting cases through the justice system, a few of these experts are found working in the background, providing supportive services to lawyers. These professionals are known as paralegals or legal assistants.
Paralegals are integral in the administrative function of legal firms. Their services are diverse in nature. Paralegals perform a variety of duties ranging from preparing information for trials to helping in investigation of evidence. Although these assistants are not allowed to represent a client in court, their input and help is crucial in the running of a law firm or an attorney office.
Associate’s Degree in Paralegal Studies
An associate’s degree in paralegal studies is a popular undergraduate degree. It may be earned after getting a high school diploma. In most cases, an associate’s degree may be transferable to the first two years of a bachelor’s degree program. However, this will depend upon the institute offering the program.
The main purpose of an associate’s degree in paralegal education is to train students for entry level jobs in the legal field. The coursework is basic in nature and highlights all the key elements of the legal industry. Students spend a great deal of time learning about the functions of the justice system and the numerous agencies that work within it. During the first phase of the program, introductory subjects such as trial procedures and research methodology are covered. Later in the program, more advanced level subjects are covered that focus on skill development and industry oriented knowledge. By the end of the associate in paralegal program, students will be able to:
Demonstrate a sound understanding of legal terminology
Distinguish between different branches of the legal field
Prepare and compose reports and other legal documents
Demonstrate analytical, problem solving, and research skills
Communicate effectively with different legal personnel
You must make sure that you enroll in institute school that is accredited by the American Bar Association. For those who are unable to attend on-campus programs due to financial reasons or other responsibilities, online associate’s degree in paralegal programs are now available. Individuals may study from their home or any other convenient location where they are able to get onto the internet and access course material. Online paralegal programs are more convenient and flexible in many ways as compared to campus-based programs.
You could work in all kinds of legal settings with a paralegal degree. Attorneys, multinational law firms, and legal government agencies require the services of paralegal professionals. You may also choose a specific branch in the field of law, and work in that particular segment. Some paralegals prefer working in family law firms, while others wish to provide services in corporate law firms. A number of specialized areas have emerged over the recent years such as intellectual property law, agricultural law, real estate law, and employment benefits law. The median income level of paralegals has been estimated by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics to be approximately $46,000.
Questions / Answers
Q:Are associates for paralegal education easy to complete?
A:The level of difficulty of associate programs will basically depend upon your willingness to work hard, and future career goals. If you are interested in joining the legal industry as an assistant, this program is ideal for you. The course work will entail a number of legal subjects that will provide you with understanding of the field.
Q:How is an Associate in Paralegal covered online?
A:Not necessarily do you have to enroll at a campus based institute to earn a degree in paralegal studies. You can study this program online and conveniently manage your routine. The coursework is covered through videos, online lectures, classroom conferencing, presentations, and more. Browse through our page to learn more about the program.
Q:What kinds of subjects and courses will I come across in Paralegal Associate Programs?
A:An associate degree in paralegal education will cover numerous subjects related to the field. You will study about the law system, justice administration, corporate law, legal terminology, English composition, research methodologies, management principles, and also develop skills necessary for the career. The exact curriculum may vary slightly from college to college.
Q:What are the course components of a Paralegal Associates Degree?
A:A paralegal associate degree will comprise of theoretical subjects, and a few research based or practical subjects. You will be required to study each of the areas that will help build knowledge regarding legal education. The practice based courses aim at helping you develop skills related to research, writing, analyzing, and more.
Q:Will a paralegal associates degree online get me a job as a paralegal assistant?
A:Yes, a paralegal qualification such as an associate degree will get you a job as a paralegal assistant. You can seek employment in law firms and work as an assistant. However, you must keep in mind the minimum requirements for becoming a paralegal in your state as these may vary from state to state. Take a look at our page for detail.
Q:I am thinking of pursuing online paralegal associate degree programs. Can I specialize in family law?
A:Yes, you can seek specialization in family law. Most paralegal schools offer a range of specialty areas. By specializing in a certain field of law, you can pursue a career relevant to your interest. For example, with specialization in family law, you can qualify for a role as a paralegal assistant in family law firms.
Q:Is an associates degree paralegal possible to complete in a year?
A:The duration of an associate degree will depend upon the institute you enroll in. Typically it takes two years to complete the program. However, accelerated degree versions are also being offered. Basically, an accelerated degree can be completed in less than the regular time allotted to this degree. It is best to search online and find out what schools are offering accelerated degrees.
Q:What is the coursework like of an associates degree in paralegal studies?
A:An associate degree in paralegal studies is aimed at equipping students with skill and knowledge about law. The program will cover a range of subjects such as legal research, legal terminology, law and legal processed, trial preparation, file management, and more. Students can look forward to a career as a paralegal assistant with this degree in hand.
Q:What is a paralegal associates degree Chicago?
A:An associate degree in paralegal studies is an undergraduate program designed to provide students with in-depth knowledge about law, administrative procedures, legal systems, and legal terminology. This program can be pursued from a number renowned colleges in California and will help you prepare for a career as a legal assistant. To find out more, browse through our page.
Q:I would like some information about a paralegal associates degree vs certificate program?
A:Associate degree programs in paralegal studies are geared towards preparing students for careers as legal assistants in the industry. The program falls in the category of undergraduate degrees. On the other hand, certifications are non-degree programs. These are designed to certify an individual in a specific field, job, task, or area. Take a look at our page for more detail.
Q:Can I pursue associates in paralegal studies online?
A:Yes, a number of accredited online institutes offer associates programs in paralegal studies. The coursework and curriculum of online programs is usually the same as that of campus-based programs. However, the mode of instruction is different. Online programs usually involve video conferencing and online lecturing instead of real class room experience.
Q:How are paralegal associate degree programs online different from those offered on-campus?
A:Paralegal associates programs offered online are usually accredited like on-campus programs. They usually offer the same curriculum as that offered by campus based programs. However, the mode of instruction of online programs involves video conferencing instead of class room lecturing. Also, online programs are much less expensive as compared to campus based programs.
Q:I am interested in an associate's degree in paralegal studies. What are the paralegal associate's degree requirements for entry?
A:The entry requirements into a paralegal associate's degree program may vary between schools. Usually the requirements include obtaining a high school diploma or equivalent in law or related discipline. Other requirements include getting letters of recommendation, and a satisfactory GPA score. Browse on for further information about the admission requirements.
Q:What jobs can I get with Paralegal Associates degree?
A:After obtaining a paralegal associates degree, one can work in various types of legal settings. Multi-national law firms, attorneys, and government agencies require paralegals. Professionals may also choose to work in a particular field or segment of law. Some of the fields include agricultural law, real estate law, intellectual property law, and employment benefits law. The median annual wage of paralegals was $46,990 in May 2012 according to the U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).