Paralegal Specialist Associate's Degree

If your idea of a great job is helping lawyers prepare for legal proceedings, you should consider earning a paralegal studies associate's degree. This article details the typical classes you will find in an associate's program, along with statistics on the paralegal job market. Schools offering Paralegal degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

What Can I Learn During a Paralegal Studies Associate's Degree Program?

Associate's degree programs in paralegal studies combine general education courses with classes in legal theory, business and ethics. Much of the learning takes place in the classroom. Programs also might include an internship experience at a law office.

During an associate's degree program, you'll typically learn about office management methods, so that you can properly organize and catalogue legal materials. Writing and technology skills are also taught, since paralegals often must help draft legal documents and use computer applications and word processing programs. The following are examples of classes that you might take:

  • Interpersonal communication
  • Criminal law
  • Intellectual property
  • Real estate law
  • Legal research
  • Property law
  • Business organization models

Program RequirementsInternship
Common ClassesProperty law, legal research, business organization models, real estate law
Program FormatOnline or on-campus
Median Salary*$48,350 for paralegals in 2014

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Can I Earn This Degree Online?

Associate's degree programs in paralegal studies are widely available online through a number of universities. You can access course materials online and communicate through chat features, blogs and message boards. These online degree programs take 1-2 years to complete and might include internship hours, which can help you gain professional experience before applying for jobs. Alternatively, some associate's degree programs have transfer systems in place that allow you to apply your credits toward paralegal bachelor's degree programs.

What's the Job Market Like?

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), an associate's degree program in paralegal studies from an accredited university can fully prepare you to apply for a paralegal specialist position (www.bls.gov). The BLS reported that paralegals earned a median annual salary of $48,350 as of May 2014. Top-earning paralegals took home more than $77,830 yearly, according to the BLS, while the lowest-paid earned less than $30,280 annually. Additionally, the BLS reported that paralegal positions were expected to grow by 8% from 2014 to 2024.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

  • 1. Degree Options:
The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

Popular Schools

  • Kaplan University

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    Online Programs Available

  • Keiser University

    Keiser University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Keiser University:

    • Associate Programs

    Online Programs Available

  • South University

    South University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at South University:

    • Associate Programs

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  • American InterContinental University

    American InterContinental University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at American InterContinental University:

    • Associate Programs

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  • Thomas Edison State University

    Thomas Edison State University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Thomas Edison State University:

    • Associate Programs

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  • Indiana Wesleyan University

    Indiana Wesleyan University responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Indiana Wesleyan University:

    • Associate Programs

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  • Excelsior College

    Excelsior College responds quickly to information requests through this website.

    Popular programs at Excelsior College:

    • Associate Programs

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  • Eastern Kentucky University

    Campus Locations:

    • Kentucky: Richmond
  • University of Louisville

    Campus Locations:

    • Kentucky: Louisville
  • The University of Montana

    Campus Locations:

    • Montana: Missoula