How Can I Determine if a Paralegal Degree Program Is Accredited?

Studying in an accredited paralegal degree program enhances a graduate's ability to find the best jobs with the highest wages. Read on to learn about the accreditation process and universities accredited by the American Bar Association. Schools offering Paralegal degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Determining Accreditation for Paralegal Programs

The American Bar Association (ABA) is involved in the accreditation of paralegal degree programs through its Standing Committee on Paralegal Studies. This committee works through the ABA Approval Commission to develop and promote the policies that are used to evaluate paralegal educational and training programs.

Important Facts About Paralegals

Median Salary (2014) $48,350 (for paralegals and legal assistants)
Entry-level Education Associate's degree
Job Outlook (2012-2022)17% (for paralegals and legal assistants)
Work Environment Legal offices, Law libraries

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Approval Process

The ABA reviews and evaluates all programs that it approves. Its goal is to find programs that meet the ABA guidelines and help students find high-quality paralegal education and training. The approval process is accomplished by extensively investigating documents that are prepared by the paralegal program, but first the program must apply for ABA approval. They then submit a self-evaluation report and pertinent exhibits to the Standing Committee on Paralegal Studies. After reviewing the evaluation report and conducting an on-site visit, the reports of the site visit team are submitted to the Approval Commission for review. If the program complies with the guidelines of the Standing Committee on Paralegal Studies, the program is approved. Programs must submit interim reports to ensure that they continue to comply.

Map of Schools

Finding accredited schools is as easy as going to the Directory of ABA Approved Paralegal Education Programs (www.abanet.org). On this website, students will find an interactive map that lists all programs approved by the American Bar Association. Contact information for each program is provided.

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:

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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.

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