Legal Studies in a Specific Area

Legal studies in a specific area can lead to a career in environmental work, finance or intellectual property rights, among other specialized fields. Read on to learn more about areas of emphasis and degree options, as well as what you might earn as an attorney or legal assistant.

Are Legal Studies in a Specific Area for Me?

Career Overview

If you're considering a career in the legal system, you might want to pursue a specific area of law. Depending on your interests, you might choose to focus on business, the environment, finance or immigration. Corporate and tax law or criminal justice may also be options.

Career Options

Specialized law professionals can be employed in private practice or by corporate firms, policy think-tanks and other organizations related to their areas of expertise. For instance, a financial law professional may work in an institution that deals with banking regulations.

Employment and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in May 2013, annual incomes for lawyers ranged from $55,170 to over $187,199 a year, while paralegals and legal assistants earned between $29,740 and $76,960. Nationwide, employment of attorneys was projected to increase by an average rate of 10% from 2012-2022, with a 17%, or faster-than-average, growth in jobs expected for paralegals and legal assistants (

How Can I Become a Specialized Legal Professional?

Educational Options

While completion of a certificate or an associate degree program in a law-related area may help you prepare for a career as a legal assistant or paralegal, an undergraduate major in legal studies or a graduate program in the same field of study can help you develop your critical-thinking, research and writing skills. You'll also have the chance to become more familiar with litigation procedures and trial preparation. If you're interested in business law, you might also consider a Bachelor of Business Administration or a Master of Business Administration (MBA) program. Similarly, if you're drawn to international law or criminology, you might pursue a major in global studies or a master's degree in criminal law.

Juris Doctor Programs

As an aspiring attorney, you'll need to earn a Juris Doctor (J.D.) from a law school that has been approved by the American Bar Association (ABA). Admission considerations include how well you do on the Law School Admission Test (LSAT). Once admitted, your coursework will cover topics in constitutional law and civil procedures, as well as concentrated studies in your area of interest. Before you can practice as an attorney, you'll also have to pass your state's bar exam.

Related Articles for Legal Studies in a Specific Area

View More Articles

Related Videos

  • How Do I Become a Lawyer? - Video

    Lawyers, or attorneys as they are sometimes called, are the backbone of the legal system. It will take you approximately seven years of study to become a Lawyer after you finish high school. You'll also need to pass a written examination.
  • What Does a Court Interpreter Do? - Video

    Court Interpreters work to translate information from another language into English for the court systems. They work with lawyers, witnesses and defendants to relay information for depositions, hearings and other court cases. Court Interpreters must be fluent in more than one language in addition to having adequate knowledge of legal terminology.
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

  1. 1
  2. 2
  3. Next »