Paralegals and legal assistants play an integral role in assisting lawyers and their clients with a variety of tasks. From conducting research and preparing legal documents for hearings, trials or corporate meetings to being involved in courts, law firms and government agencies, you will become part of an important, fast-paced team within the legal system.
Train to become a certified paralegal through online instruction rooted in real-world situations, leveraging legal-specific databases and software that cover modern legal issues such as intellectual property, as well as emerging technologies such as blockchain and cryptocurrency.
If you have already earned an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree, our Paralegal Certificate online courses are designed to give you the core legal knowledge and skills you need to start your paralegal career in as few as 8 months.
Take me to:
What Will I Be Prepared to Do When I’m Done?
Strive for Industry Certification
Our advanced Paralegal studies curriculum is designed to academically prepare you to sit for the National Certified Legal Assistant/Paralegal (CLA/CP) Examination.2
Launch Your Career
Upon graduation and passing of your CLA/CP Examination, you can start showcasing your knowledge and transferable skills to employers and begin a stable career in today’s fast-paced legal environment.
Pursue Potential Job Growth
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the projected job growth potential between 2016 and 2026 for paralegals and legal assistants is 15%.3 An online Paralegal program from Rasmussen College can help set you up for success in this growing field.
What Skills Will I Gain?
Legal Analysis and Insight
Develop your ability to draft legal documents, manage case files, synthesize data, properly cite legal authorities and identify relevant information sources for legal problems.
Navigate Legal Research Tools
Utilize and navigate extensive legal research tools such as Clio, Lexis Advance® and Fastcase and how such databases are used in the legal research process.4
Advanced Writing Skills
Understand and apply the principles of legal research and writing. Develop strong writing, information and financial literacy, problem-solving and critical-thinking skills.
Managing Legal Relationships
Value the ability to effectively communicate in a variety of situations. Utilize practical approach to the law of contracts and effectively work with contracts, breach of contracts and the remedies provided for a breach of contract.
You’ll also develop the soft skills you will transfer into your role. Core courses develop your skills in critical thinking, communication, digital fluency, information literacy, diversity and teamwork and ethics and professional responsibility. Learn more about transferable skills.
What Types of Classes Will I Take?
- PLA 1013
- 4 Credits
- PLA 1108
- 3 Credits
- PLA 2820
- 4 Credits
Introduction to Law and the Legal System
Examines the American legal system from a variety of perspectives. Surveys topics including essential history, the working structure of government, issues of court procedure and specific legal concepts. Investigates the role of the paralegal in the legal system and the impact of legal ethics on the paralegal.
Introduction to Legal Research
Introduces the legal research process for paralegals. Develop information literacy skills specific to the paralegal field by working with primary sources, like state and federal enacted law and secondary sources. Students will learn the meaning of, and practice, shepardizing.
Prepares students for entry into the legal community through a simulated and meaningful law office experience in an online environment. Students learn through advanced analysis, research and writing projects, then demonstrate their mastery of the content of their core curriculum and apply specialized theory, skills and concepts. Students will engage in practical work experience in the day-to-day operations of a law office work environment and will handle simulated client cases.
Courses to Complete
33 Credit Hours
What Should I Know Before I Enroll?
Entrance requirements at the Rasmussen College School of Justice Studies vary depending on the program. We do not require enrolling students to submit standardized test scores; however, every entrant must have at least a high school diploma or the equivalent.
We believe in giving credit where it’s due. We will provide a transfer credit eligibility estimate quickly with one-day turnaround without needing a formal transcript—any kind of graduation record will do in order to produce an estimate. Talk to an admissions advisor today or explore our Transfer Policy page to review our seamless credit policies designed to maximize credits, potentially save money and expedite graduation
Help Paying for College
Higher education should be a manageable investment. Talk to an admissions advisor and learn how these programs can make it more affordable with Flex Choice® learning options, loans and grants, scholarship opportunities and corporate and military discounts.
Where Can I Find a Paralegal Program Near Me?
At Rasmussen College, we want our courses to be available on your schedule, not the other way around. Select programs are available for enrollment through a specific campus and nationally online, but students complete the courses online and are able to utilize online and on-campus support and resources. See below to find out where you can find a Paralegal Certificate program near you.
- Completion time is dependent on transfer credits accepted and the number of courses completed each term.
- Rasmussen College will reimburse the application fee for each first attempt of all of the industry certification exams for which you qualify to take. Should you need to take an exam more than once to receive a passing score, you will be responsible for all subsequent exam application fees.
- Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, [career information accessed May 30, 2018] www.bls.gov/ooh/. Employment conditions in your area may vary.
- LexisNexis is a registered trademark of Reed Elsevier Inc.