Online Colleges For Paralegal Studies –As the need for paralegals continues to grow, a growing number of colleges and universities are offering online paralegal programs. Online paralegal studies can offer prospective paralegals the flexibility and convenience that traditional, campus-based programs may not provide. This article will chart the course of online paralegal studies, explore the benefits of online paralegal education, discuss essential features to look for when choosing an online paralegal program, detail how to meet the requirements for professional certification, and explore a few of the top reputable online colleges for paralegal studies.
Charting the Course of Online Paralegal Studies
Online paralegal studies are typically offered in an asynchronous format, meaning students are able to access course content and complete assignments at their own pace. Students typically utilize comprehensive online course management systems in order to view course lectures, readings, and assignments, collaborate with peers and instructors, and submit assignments for grading. This type of distance learning can be beneficial for those who are unable to attend a traditional paralegal program. For example, those who are unable to attend an on-campus program due to a full-time job or other time commitments can complete the program in their own time, as long as they meet due dates and program requirements.
Benefits of Online Paralegal Education
There are many benefits to taking an online paralegal course. Since the vast majority of these programs are conducted online, they make it easy for students to fit their studies around their other commitments. Online programs also typically offer access to virtual libraries, computer labs, and tutoring services. In addition to this, online paralegal studies may also offer cost savings in comparison to traditional, on-campus programs. As the cost of tuition for on-campus courses continues to rise, online courses may offer a more cost-effective option for those seeking to complete a paralegal program. Finally, online paralegal studies can provide a great foundation for those looking to move into private practice or pursue career advancement in the legal field.
Essential Features to Look for in an Online Paralegal Program
When choosing an online paralegal program, it is important to look for the following features:
It is important to ensure that the program you are considering is accredited by one of the ABA-accredited paralegal program accrediting bodies. The ABA maintains a list of currently accredited programs, as well as a list of schools which are in the process of applying for accreditation.
Make sure that the program you are considering offers courses that are relevant to your career aspirations and goals. Check to see that the program offers the classes you need, such as Legal Research & Writing, Litigation, and Employment Law.
Some online programs may also offer internship opportunities in addition to the online classes. Internships provide valuable hands-on experience and can provide a great way to test the waters before committing to a full-fledged career in the legal field.
Finally, it is important to ensure that the program’s instructors are knowledgeable and experienced professionals in the legal field. An online paralegal program should offer courses taught by attorneys or other experienced paralegals who can offer real-world perspectives and guidance.
Meet Requirements for Professional Certification with Online Paralegal Studies
Once you have chosen a suitable online paralegal program, it is important to ensure you meet the requirements for professional certification. These requirements vary by state, but typically involve completing an accredited paralegal program and passing an exam. Once these requirements have been met, you can apply to sit for the certification exam. The certification exam covers topics related to research, writing, client interviews, as well as general legal knowledge. It is important to take practice tests and study hard to ensure you are well prepared for the exam.
A Few of the Top Reputable Online Colleges for Paralegal Studies
When selecting an online paralegal program, it is important to choose a program from a reputable, ABA-accredited school. A few of the top reputable online colleges for paralegal studies include:
- Walden University – Walden University offers a Bachelor’s Degree in Paralegal Studies, designed for individuals with a legal technology background or a general paralegal certificate.
- University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill – The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill offers a fully online Master’s Degree in Paralegal Studies. This 30-credit hour program focuses on legal research and writing.
- George Washington University – The George Washington University offers a Bachelor’s Degree in Paralegal Studies and a Master’s Degree in Paralegal Studies. Both programs are fully online.
- University of Denver – The University of Denver offers a 48-credit hour, online Master’s Degree in Paralegal Studies.
Online paralegal studies offer the flexibility and convenience that traditional, campus-based programs may not provide. When selecting an online paralegal program, it is important to ensure the program is accredited, offers the courses you require, and includes experienced instructors. After completing your online paralegal program, you will need to meet the requirements for professional certification, such as passing an exam. And remember, always select a program from a reputable, ABA-accredited school. With the right online paralegal program, you can be well on your way to a successful career in the legal field.