Hodges University

Associate in Science in Paralegal Studies

Hodges University's Paralegal Studies Program offers a curriculum of law, the legal profession and practice, and liberal arts which meet the needs of the legal community and the individual student. The Associate in Science in Paralegal Studies degree is designed to prepare students for entry-level positions assisting attorneys and other legal professionals with legal research, evidence collection, communications, document and litigation preparation, and other general duties of the daily practice of law. All credits earned from this degree are acceptable and apply toward the Hodges University’s Baccalaureate Degree in Legal Studies.

On Campus and Online
This Associate in Science in Paralegal Studies is offered on campus or entirely online as part of our online learning experience.

Paralegal Graduates Are Skilled In:

 

  • Document Preparation
  • Legal Research
  • Client Contact
  • Gathering Evidence
  • Case Management
  • Drafting Legal Motions

Why Paralegal Studies?

Is An Associate in Paralegal Studies Right For Me?

The American Bar Association has acknowledged the importance of the paralegal role by devising a formal definition:

"A person...who is employed by a law office...in the capacity or function which involves the performance under the ultimate direction and supervision of an attorney, of specially delegated substantive legal work, which work for the most part, requires a sufficient knowledge of legal concepts that, absent such assistant, the lawyer would perform the task."

A paralegal is a legal assistant, not a legal secretary, and has been trained in general and specific areas of law and legal research. The paralegal performs routine duties of legal practice such as client contact, research, evidence collection, and document preparation under the supervision of an attorney. The paralegal is to the lawyer what a nurse is to a doctor–an assistant. By delegating routine matters to the legal assistant, both the attorney and the client are better served.

Strong Career Field

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of paralegals and legal assistants is expected to grow by 18 percent from 2010 to 2020.Competition for paralegal jobs will be strong, therefore experienced, formally trained paralegals should have the best job prospects.*

*Source: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Legal/Paralegals-and-legal-assistants.htm 12-11-13

Continue Your Education

After obtaining your Associate in Science in Paralegal Studies, you can continue your education with a Bachelor's Degree in Legal Studies. All credits earned from the Associate in Science in Paralegal Studies degree are acceptable and apply toward the Hodges University’s Baccalaureate Degree in Legal Studies.

Careers

What is the Paralegal Career Outlook?

The job market for paralegals and legal assistants is strong and expected to grow by 18 percent from 2010 to 2020. The applicant pool is competitive and experienced, formally trained paralegals should have the best job prospects.*

*Source: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Legal/Paralegals-and-legal-assistants.htm 12-11-13

Paralegals may find jobs in all types of organizations, but the majority find careers in law firms, corporate legal departments, and government agencies.**

PARALEGAL DUTIES**
  • Investigate Cases
  • Organize and Present Findings and Case Information
  • Obtain Affidavits and Formal Statements
  • Legal Research
  • Update Case Computer Databases
  • Assist Lawyers in Trial Preparation and Trials
  • Write Reports
  • Draft Legal Documents
PARALEGAL SPECIALTIES**
  • Litigation
  • Personal Injury
  • Corporate Law
  • Criminal Law
  • Family Law
  • Employee Benefits
  • Intellectual Property
  • Bankruptcy,
  • Immigration
  • Real Estate
CAREER OPTIONS**
  • Private Law Offices
  • State Government
  • Local Government
  • Federal Government
  • Finance
  • Insurance

**Source: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Legal/Paralegals-and-legal-assistants.htm#tab-2 12-11-2013

Curriculum

What Will I Learn?

You may enter the Paralegal program during any semester. A full time student, 12 semester hour credits per term or typically 3 courses per term, can complete this program in approximately 2 years.

Hover over the course names below to view course descriptions.

Area I Paralegal Component Semester Hour Credit
LEA1000 Introduction to Law

LEA1000 - Introduction to Law - 4 Credits

An introduction to the legal system including the United States Constitution, sources of law, state and federal court systems, administrative agencies, basic legal research, and various areas of common law including briefing cases and terminology common to those areas of law. This course is a prerequisite to all LEA courses.

4
LEA1001 Civil Procedure

LEA1001 - Civil Procedure - 2 Credits

This course provides a study of basic procedural due process including complaints, answers, crossclaims, discovery, various pre-trial motions, and basic trial procedures.

Prerequisite: LEA1000 or permission of the Faculty/Program Advisor, Program Chair, and Dean

2
LEA1002 Torts

LEA1002 - Torts - 2 Credits

A general overview of tort law including types of torts such as: intentional, negligence, strict liability, product liability, and non-physical injury. Also covered are the limits and defenses to liability, and research and writing on the subject.

Prerequisite: LEA1000 or permission of the Faculty/Program Advisor, Program Chair, and Dean

2
LEA1003 Contracts

LEA1003 - Contracts - 2 Credits

This course provides a study of basic contract elements, breach of contract, remedies, various types of common contracts and their usage, including terms and clauses often contained in contracts.

Prerequisite: LEA1000 or permission of the Faculty/Program Advisor, Program Chair, and Dean

2
LEA1004 Property

LEA1004 - Property - 2 Credits

A study of basic property possession, ownership, and transfer theory through an examination of common and statutory law as each affects real property. The student is introduced to property descriptions, title examination, encumbrances, easements, licenses, real estate financing, title insurance, closings, condominiums and cooperatives, surveys and descriptions, and leases.

Prerequisite: LEA1000 or permission of the Faculty/Program Advisor, Program Chair, and Dean

2
LEA2014 Legal Research and Writing

LEA2014 - Legal Research and Writing - 4 Credits

A study of the various tools and methods used to perform legal research and a study of legal writing formats and techniques, and the preparation of briefs, memoranda, and other legal documents.

Prerequisite: LEA1000 or permission of the Faculty/Program Advisor, Program Chair, and Dean

4
LEA2020 Computer Programs for Law

LEA2020 - Computer Programs for Law - 4 Credits

This course is designed to teach students the software and programs commonly used in law offices, case management, and docket control.

Prerequisite: LEA1000 or permission of the Faculty/Program Advisor, Program Chair, and Dean

4
LEA2700 Accounting for Legal Professionals

LEA2700 - Accounting for Legal Professionals - 2 Credits

A study of accounting concepts, terminology, and procedures including balance sheets, income statements, and bookkeeping; accounting applications within the law office including attorney-client accounting and legal considerations; federal, state, income, estate, and payroll taxes; and preparation of various returns.

Prerequisite: LEA1000 or permission of the Faculty/Program Advisor, Program Chair, and Dean

2
LEA2999/2900 Practicum or Paralegal Seminar

LEA2999 - Practicum - 2 Credits

This course is designed to give the student practical experience in performing basic duties of a paralegal regarding office administration, client and employer relationships, legal reasoning, and professional demeanor.

Prerequisite: 20 credit hours in LEA courses or permission of Faculty/Program Advisor, Program Chair, and Dean

LEA2900 - Paralegal Seminar - 2 Credits

A review of the course work, skills, and knowledge used by a successful paralegal, based on the competencies designated by the National Association of Legal Assistants.

Prerequisite: 20 credit hours in LEA courses or permission of Faculty/Program Advisor, Program Chair, and Dean

2

Total Paralegal Component
24

Area II

Liberal Arts Component


CAP1000 Computer Applications

CAP1000 - Computer Applications - 4 Credits

This course helps students develop the knowledge and skills necessary to be able to use a computer effectively as a tool for productivity, communication, collaboration and problem-solving. The course coverage includes: knowledge of computer operations and file management, the use of email, navigating the Internet to search for information and resources, online safety, security and privacy, as well as the ability to use the current Microsoft Office suite including Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Access at a level of basic proficiency.

4
IDS1001 Foundations for College Success

IDS1001 - Foundations for College Success - 4 Credits

This course provides students with an overview of the five educational outcomes expected of all Hodges University graduates: Critical Thinking, Effective Communication, Initiative, Leadership Ability, and Research Ability. Students will be introduced to the Blackboard Learning SystemTM, library resources, APA format, as well as the Academic Honesty Policy and the Writing and Oral Communication requirements of the University. All students are required to take this course their first semester with the University. This course is graded on a pass/fail basis.

1
PSY1103 Strategic Thinking

PSY1103 - Strategic Thinking - 3 Credits

This course focuses on how critical thinking and attitudinal perspectives influence human behavior. Students are introduced to methods used in critical thinking, how attitudes are formulated and changed, how the human brain works and how critical thinking can be effective in higher education and their personal lives.

3
ENG1101 English Composition I

ENG1101 - English Composition I - 4 Credit

This course is designed to encourage students to evaluate their own writing practices, learn strategies to make their writing more effective, and then apply their understanding to expository and research writing. Students must pass this course with a grade of C or better. Prerequisite: A score of 60 or better, or its equivalent on the language skills section of the CPAt test, a score of 65 or better on the language section of the COMPASS test, a score of 48 or better on the language section of the Online Entrance test, or ENG0991 and/or ENG0992 with at least a grade of C.

4
MAC1132 College Mathematics

MAC1132 - College Mathematics - 4 Credits

This course will provide the student with a firm understanding of college level mathematics as it relates to the contemporary world. Topics include critical thinking, set theory, logic, number systems, and an introduction to probability. Other topics include an introduction to Algebra and Geometry, solving linear equations, ratios, proportions, variation, percents and interest, measurement, and the metric system. Modern applications are emphasized with the above topics. All students must earn a C or better in this course

Prerequisite: A score of 60 or better, or its equivalent on the mathematics section of the CPAt test, a score of a 50 or better on the mathematics section of the COMPASS Test, a score of a 18 or better on the mathematics section of the Online Entrance Test, or a grade of C or better in MAT0998

4
COM3015 Professional Communication

COM3015 - Professional Communication - 4 Credits

A study of the analysis and application of information systems. Data, business information and knowledge management, hardware and software tools, and personnel issues are the central management considerations in this course of study.

This course provides students with methods of subject development, research, and organization for oral presentation of information. Emphasis is placed on the practical application of skills in a professional setting. Students are required to use presentation software.

4
PHI3601/3301 Ethics or Philosophy

PHI3301 - Philosophy - 4 Credits

This course acquaints the student with the most significant directions of philosophical thought to the end that the student may have the ability to formulate questions, arrive at reasonable answers, and evaluate those of others.

Prerequisite: ENG1101 and 30 semester hours

PHI3601 - Ethics - 4 Credits

Ethics is a branch of philosophy that explores both the theory and application of virtues and vices in all areas of our lives. The course investigates current issues and events in the light of various moral principles that justify, clarify, explain, and direct our actions and attitudes.

Prerequisite: ENG1101 and 30 semester hours

4

Total Liberal Arts Component
24

Area III

Approved Elective Component



Credit for courses taken under the Approved Elective Component may be granted through either advanced standing credit (transfer credits) or classes taken at Hodges University as approved in consultation with the Faculty/Program Advisor, Program Chair, and Dean. Electives are preferable in subjects related to law and must be 2000 level or higher.



Total Approved Elective Component
12

Total Semester Hours Required for Graduation

60

Benefits

How is Hodges Paralegal Studies Program Different?

Certification

Graduates of Hodges University’s paralegal program are eligible to take the Certified Legal Assistant exam given by the National Association of Legal Assistants, Inc. (NALA).

More Choices

The Paralegal Studies Program is designed to be delivered online or in a traditional classroom format.  Choose the method that is best for you!

Our Professors

Every instructor of law at Hodges University holds a Juris Doctorate degree and has practiced law. All other instructors hold at least a Master’s degree and experience in their respective field, ensuring that each student receives the best education and preparation in his/her career field.

Small Class Size

Our small class sizes allow for enhanced individual attention. With an average class size of 14 students, you will always receive the assistance and attention you need.

More Information

For more information about our program or Hodges policies and procedures review our Student Handbook and our Current Catalog.

Tuition

What Will the Program Cost?

Hodges University tuition continues to be one of the lowest among private institutions in the state of Florida. Basic tuition for all undergraduate credit hour courses is $530.00 per credit hour.

Additional fees may apply. Books and supplies are not included in tuition. For a complete schedule of Tuition and Fees, see the current Catalog or Graduate Bulletin.

Rewards Plan

Full time undergraduate students can take advantage of our Rewards Plan. Take an additional course at no extra cost and save up to 25% on undergraduate tuition.

Prospective students should contact Admissions at 844-HODGESU or admit@hodges.edu for more information. Current students should contact the Registrar's Office at 239-938-7818 or registrar@hodges.edu for more information.

How Does Hodges Help?

Hodges University holds several fundraising events every year that benefit institutional scholarship funds. We also directly contribute an average of approximately two million dollars per year in loan offsetting funds to assist student's in achieving their educational goals. Remember that tuition may be reduced by scholarships and grants and financial aid is available.

"I love the friendly staff and faculty. They helped me through a tough time in my life and guided me to where I need to be." - Nichols School of Professional Studies Student

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Need More Information?

You may also contact us to speak to an admissions coordinator who will guide you through the application and admissions process. To speak to an admissions coordinator call us at 1-800-466-8017 (Naples), 1-800-466-0019 (FM), use our contact form, email admit@hodges.edu or schedule a one-on-one visit to tour one of our campuses.

Your Admissions Coordinator will:

  • Help you complete the application in its entirety.
  • Help you obtain necessary transcripts.
  • Schedule your admissions test (if necessary).
  • Coordinate the Financial Aid process with a Financial Aid Professional.
  • Refer you to your Academic Advisor for class scheduling.
  • Give you information regarding your orientation.

We look forward to welcoming you to the Hodges family!

 

Mary Nuosce

Program Director : Master in Clinical Mental Health Counseling

As the field of counseling continues to evolve, our commitment ever increases to develop the counseling knowledge and skills of our Clinical Mental Health Counseling students.

 
 

Attending Hodges has been the most wonderful experience of my life.

- Kelly O'Brien

Bachelor of Science in Interdisciplinary Studies

Hodges University’s Interdisciplinary Studies (IDS) Program supports the University’s philosophy of being an open, creative, and community conscious institution of higher learning.

 
 
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