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Legal Studies
Online Associate Degree Program

20 Mo.

Program length


Online

Format

62

Credits


$446

Cost Per Credit

Take online classes and step towards becoming a paralegal

AccreditationAccredited by the Higher Learning Commission
Transfer creditUp to 46 approved credits
CertificationPrep for the Certified Paralegal Examination (NALA)
PathwaysIf you choose, continue your study in advanced legal topics/pre-law (BS in Legal Studies)
Waived enrollment fee Classes start March 6th
Apply Now

Earn a paralegal degree online in less than 2 years.

Your first step to becoming a paralegal / legal assistant is getting educated. Herzing University exists to help you get the education you need to earn the career you’ve always wanted.

The Herzing University Associate of Science in Legal Studies online program is built for students looking to become a paralegal, outlining foundational concepts in pre-law to support continued growth in the field of law.

  • Learn online in Herzing’s Everywhere Classroom: on your own schedule, at your own pace
  • Class topics include introductory concepts in legal assisting, legal writing, torts, law office procedures, civil litigation and ethics and paralegal professionalism
  • Small class sizes & access to accomplished faculty

With Herzing University earning an associate degree online to help you best qualify for your first job as a paralegal IS possible. We exist to help you follow the educational path of your choosing to pursue the career you’ve always wanted.

Classes Start March 6th

Learn More Today

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Curriculum

Paralegal program classes & curriculum details

In this program, you will learn about different types of law as well as gain the skills needed to conduct legal research and prepare legal documents.

Graduates are prepared to sit for the Certified Legal Assisting and Certified Paralegal exams through the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA). You will be ready for a professional role in any area of law.

All classes are delivered online with a capstone or internship (if available in your state).

ProgramMonthsiCredits
Associate and Associate of Applied Science in Legal Studies2062
i. Average number of months for students to complete program

Required Courses

All courses, 30.00 semester credit hours, are required.

Open Elective Courses

A minimum of 6.00 semester credit hours is required. Students may take any accounting (AC), business management (BU), information systems (IS), or paralegal (PL) course. At least 3.00 semester credit hours must be paralegal (PL) courses.

General Education Requirements

Students enrolled in this associate degree must complete a minimum of 24.00 semester credit hours in general education distributed among the following disciplines. Refer to the General Education section of the catalog for specific information about courses within each discipline. 9.00 Semester Credit Hours in Communications 6.00 Semester Credit Hours in Humanities (must include 3 semester credit hours of cultural diversity) 3.00 Semester Credit Hours in Mathematics 3.00 Semester Credit Hours in Science  3.00 Semester Credit Hours in Social and Behavioral Sciences

Personal and Professional Development Courses

2.00 semester credit hours are required.

An alternative: Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies

Designed to provide students with a more advanced understanding of law, this program also incorporates a selection of core business courses to provide a solid background in management and administration. Graduates are prepared for careers in legal assistance, legal administration, business and management training. This degree is also ideal for those wishing to continue on to law school. Learn more about our online legal studies bachelor's degree program.

Tuition & Cost

Tuition & Cost

When you accept the 10% tuition discount from our Financial Commitment Scholarship, the cost of tuition for the paralegal program is $446 per credit.1

You can potentially earn even greater savings by transferring credit from prior college coursework, applying for financial aid, or potential partnership opportunities through your employer.

Our goal is your career advancement. That’s why we are always working to improve our curriculum and processes to make our program as affordable as possible while preparing you best for success in your work.

Find my estimate

 Scholarships & Financial Aid

You may be eligible for multiple scholarships and grants, both through Herzing University and several national scholarship websites.

Find scholarships and grants 

 Military/Veteran Discounts

Veterans, Active Duty U.S. Servicemembers, and spouses may qualify for a 10% tuition discount or tuition reduction to $250 per credit.

VA/Military benefits 

i. Financial Commitment Scholarship eligibility requirements: Recommended that students limit student loan borrowing to only what is needed to cover the cost of tuition and fees. Students may borrow up to $2,000 in student loans in excess of tuition and fees to cover their cost of attendance and retain eligibility for this scholarship. Excess loan eligibility dependent on individual student situation.

Requirements

Requirements

Legal assisting/paralegal program enrollment prerequisites

Enrollment requirements for the online legal studies associate degree program at Herzing University include:

  • A high school diploma, GED or equivalent
  • Meet and interview with a Herzing University admissions advisor
  • Fill out an enrollment application

Eligible states for enrollment: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District Of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

Classes Start March 6th

Waived Enrollment Fee
Degree Options

Choose your path to begin a career in law:

Associate Degree Paralegal Program Online

Associate degree

  • Program length: 20 months
  • Credits required: 62 credit hours
  • Degree: Associate of Science in Legal Studies

Earn the education you need to become a paralegal fast – and get started in your new career.

Bachelor's Degree in Legal Studies Online

Bachelor's degree

  • Program length: 36 months
  • Credits required: 125 credit hours
  • Degree: Bachelor of Science in Legal Studies

Earn a 3-year bachelor’s degree in legal studies to build a strong understanding of the law.

Careers

What can I do with a paralegal degree?

Paralegals work in all sorts of different environments and may specialize in many different categories of law. Law firms of all specialties require clerical work, research, dictation and other administrative tasks needed to keep things running smoothly.

Paralegals may work in many different capacities:

  • Private sector
  • Public sector: government & military
  • Freelance / contract

By earning your associate degree online and getting certified, you’ll be qualified for many different types of legal assisting roles and can determine what works best for you.

Certification

Getting certified helps your resume stand out

Upon graduating with an associate or bachelor’s degree, you will be eligible to take the Certified Paralegal Examination offered by the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA).

Graduate with a degree, pass the exam and you will be a Certified Paralegal (CP).

Herzing’s goal is your success in work. Getting certified may give you an edge in the hiring process and help you earn your dream job.

Do I need to be certified?

The rules vary by state. Certification is not a legal prerequisite to work as a paralegal in every state. However, we encourage you to get certified. The Herzing online legal studies program curriculum includes a class dedicated to NALA certification exam prep.

FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

Paralegals may work in many different environments with unique specialties in law, including:

  • Personal injury
  • Family law / divorce
  • Business law
  • Criminal law
  • Government & military: Air Force, Army, etc.
  • Bankruptcy
  • Real estate
  • Civil litigation
  • Immigration
  • Intellectual property (IP)
  • Estate planning / probate

…among many others. With enough experience in your specialty you may regard yourself as an “Immigration Paralegal,” “Litigation Paralegal,” “Corporate Paralegal,” etc.

Our associate degree program takes an average of 20 months to complete; the bachelor’s degree program, 36 months. After earning your degree, you will be eligible to take the Certified Paralegal Examination offered by the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA).

Educational requirements to become a paralegal vary by state and employer. Given the broad scope of potential roles in legal assisting, different jobs require different levels of education.

Types of paralegal programs to choose from:

  • Certificate / diploma programs*. Basic certificate programs (sometimes called a “diploma”) are designed to provide minimum training & education. Some are designed for students who already hold a bachelor’s degree in another field.
  • Degree program. Associate & bachelor’s degree programs help you become highly qualified for an entry-level paralegal job and often provide a strong foundation to grow into other careers in law.

* Herzing University does not offer a certificate program.

It’s important to understand the difference between the two types of “certificate” programs. A basic certificate/diploma program will typically offer a fast track to getting started as a paralegal, but none of them are ABA approved and they will fall short of the comprehensiveness of a degree or post-baccalaureate certificate program.

Which should I choose?

That depends on your prior education and career goals. For students without a degree interested in becoming a paralegal, our associate and bachelor’s degree programs are a perfect starting point.

Paralegals assist lawyers with the creation of legal documents and conduct research on laws, court cases and contracts—but duties will vary depending on the employer. Those entering the field with little or no prior experience will typically perform routine clerical tasks, taking on the additional responsibility of more varied tasks after gaining the appropriate experience.

The duties of a legal assistant/paralegal include assisting the lawyer with research, brief preparation, and other legal office administration, but do not include practicing law, advising clients, or setting fees since paralegals may not provide legal services directly to the public except as permitted by law.

Paralegals can work in-house with a law firm in the private sector, in the public sector with a government agency, or in a freelance/contract role. Discover more about what paralegals are and what they do.

No. Currently, fully online paralegal / legal assisting programs are not approved by the ABA. There are cases where the ABA may approve individual online classes – but there are no 100% online ABA approved programs. 

Not all employers will require completion of an ABA approved program. However, earning your degree through an ABA approved program can give you an edge on the job market and open doors to more opportunities.

Herzing University offers ABA approved paralegal programs at our New Orleans and Atlanta ground campuses.

These titles are sometimes used interchangeably, but the general difference between legal assistants vs. paralegals breaks down like this:

  • Legal assistants (alternatively named administrative assistant, legal secretary) handle a broad variety of office tasks, including scheduling, data entry, answering phones or other clerical duties.
  • Paralegals often handle more technical legal tasks, including preparing documentation or performing research, and often requires more experience in law.

However, duties vary widely by firm and there are certainly employees titled “Legal Assistant” who perform paralegal duties—and vice-versa.

Herzing’s paralegal / legal assisting degree programs prepare you to thrive no matter the title!

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), paralegals earn an average salary of $58,330 per year ($28.04 per hour).* Keep in mind this is not an estimate for starting pay in an entry-level position—average pay will vary based on your experience, level of education and the state in which you work. Find the average paralegal salary by state.

The BLS reports a positive outlook for jobs over the next ten years, projecting a 12% increase in employment for paralegals and legal assistants from 2020-2030—well above the expected increase across all occupations.*

Yes. Herzing University offers online associate and bachelor’s degree options for students seeking requisite education to earn their first entry-level job as a paralegal / legal assistant.

Keep in mind some law firms and employers may require the completion of an ABA approved program for new hires – and the fully online program is not ABA approved (but programs at our Atlanta and New Orleans campuses are).

Yes! Legal assisting is not only an excellent job if you’ve got the right skillset—but it can also act as a springboard into many different types of careers in law as you get more experience and further your education.

Your first step is getting educated. Our goal is to help you take the first step, discover your true capabilities and thrive in your new career.

A career in legal assisting might be right for you if you exhibit these desirable qualities:

  • Are comfortable in a highly structured environment
  • Are precise and pay attention to details
  • Enjoy research
  • Have excellent written and oral communications skills
  • Have strong computer skills
  • Wish to continually expand your capabilities
  • Work well alone or as part of a team
  • Handle on-the-job pressure
  • Are inquisitive and like to find answers to questions
  • Bilingual capability not required—but can be valuable
Disclosures
Accreditation

Accreditation & Disclosures

Note: Only the Herzing University paralegal programs in New Orleans and Atlanta are approved by the American Bar Association. The online legal studies program is not ABA approved.

Herzing University is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (hlcommission.org), an institutional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.

View Herzing University Accreditation and Approvals

* Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook 2021. BLS estimates do not represent entry-level wages and/or salaries. Multiple factors, including prior experience, age, geography market in which you want to work and degree field, will affect career outcomes and earnings. Herzing neither represents that its graduates will earn the average salaries calculated by BLS for a particular job nor guarantees that graduation from its program will result in a job, promotion, salary increase or other career growth.

Eligible states for enrollment: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District Of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

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By selecting this button you agree to receive updates and alerts from Herzing University. Text HELP to 85109 for help, Text STOP to 85109 to end. Msg & Data Rates May Apply. By opting in, I authorize Herzing University to deliver SMS messages and I understand that I am not required to opt in as a condition of enrollment. By leaving this box unchecked you will not be opted in for SMS messages. Click to read Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.
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Opt-In to Receive SMS Messages

By selecting this button you agree to receive updates and alerts from Herzing University. Text HELP to 85109 for help, Text STOP to 85109 to end. Msg & Data Rates May Apply. By opting in, I authorize Herzing University to deliver SMS messages and I understand that I am not required to opt in as a condition of enrollment. By leaving this box unchecked you will not be opted in for SMS messages. Click to read Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.
Herzing Tuition Wizard

The program has an automatic transfer of credits, and allows you to transfer up to additional credits.

  Transfer Credits

The program allows you to transfer up to credits.

  Transfer Credits

The program allows you to transfer up to credit hours.

  Transfer Credit Hours
Associate and Associate of Applied Science in Legal Studies Online Campus
Tuition
Cost per Credit$495.00
Base Tuition$30,690.00
Savings from Transfer Credits (46 x $495.00 )(-$22,770.00)
Estimated Tuition Cost*$7,920.00
Fees
One-time Program Fee$0.00
Per-semester Program Fee$0.00
Per-semester Learner Resource Fee$490.00
Estimated Total Fee*$980.00
Total Semesters 1
RequiredNeeded
52
Total Credits
RequiredNeeded
6216
Estimated Cost 2
Base CostYour Cost
$33,140.00$8,900.00
Estimated Savings*
$24,240.00

Available Scholarships

Who Can Apply

Recipients and the amounts of the scholarships vary.

Requirements

Scholarship recipients, amounts, and terms and conditions are determined by Herzing University and its donors and are subject to change. An endowment is an amount of money (fund) that is given to the University with a stipulation that the funds are invested to earn annual interest rather than spent immediately. Students and alumni can learn more through the following channels: email give@herzing.edu, call (262) 735-6189, or visit https://www.herzing.edu/make-donation-herzing-university.

Who Can Apply

Any student in a degree-seeking program that makes on-time, out of pocket payments toward tuition and fee expenses.

Requirements

The amount of the payments made that exceed the amount of excess loan funding received will be used to calculate total award. Eligible students must make on-time payments, according to a predetermined payment plan. Restrictions may vary.

  • Matching percentage is based on student’s EFC at the time of application.
  • Student’s with a Pell eligible EFC will receive a 100% match
  • Students will non-Pell eligible EFC will receive 50% match
  • Students who do no complete the FAFSA will automatically qualify for the 50% match.
Who Can Apply

Students enrolled in the following undergraduate and diploma programs:

  • Business; Criminal Justice; Dental Hygiene Bridge; Dental Assisting; EMT-Paramedic Associates Degree Program, Healthcare Administration; Health Information Management; Insurance Billing and Coding; Legal Studies; Medical Assisting; Medical Billing; Medical Office Administration; Sterile Processing; Surgical Technology
  • Students enrolled in Graduate and Post Master’s Certificate Business Programs

Continuing students may contact a Financial Aid Advisor to confirm eligibility

Requirements

Recommended that students limit student loan borrowing to only what is needed to cover the cost of tuition and fees. Students may borrow up to $2,000* in student loans in excess of tuition and fees to cover their cost of attendance and retain eligibility for this scholarship. *Excess loan eligibility dependent on individual student situation.

Who Can Apply

Available to applicants in any program that demonstrate a financial need, who are unable to cover cost of attendance with alternative resources

Requirements

Must show financial need and are unable to cover cost of attendance with alternative resources

Who Can Apply

Available to undergraduate students enrolled in an Associates or Bachelor’s degree that are on the Dean’s or President’s list

Requirements

Eligible Applicants must:

  1. Submit an application by the required deadline for applicable semester answering the following questions in paragraph form/essay format, bulleted outline, video submission, or other creative means.
    • What are your proudest achievements during this semester? (Examples: community service, campus involvement, family life, charity work, major improvement to grades, etc.)
    • What obstacles did you have to overcome to achieve your academic success this semester?
  2. Not have received any HU Strive Scholarship in any enrollment. If an applicant is not selected during a semester, they may reapply by submitting a new application in subsequent semesters for as long as they remain on the Dean’s or President’s list

The application must be submitted through Canvas by the end of the A Term immediately following the semester when the Dean’s or President’s list was earned.

Who Can Apply

Available to Herzing graduates who have re-enrolled in a higher-level degree

Requirements

Alumni may qualify as many times as they re-enroll in a higher-level degree

Who Can Apply

Employees of a business participating in the Herzing Partnerships Program

Requirements
  • Documentation showing proof of employment is required
  • Recipients must be packaged at direct cost (receiving financial aid for tuition and fees only)
Who Can Apply

Herzing is excited to award this scholarship during the season on giving. This scholarship is available to new, current, or re-enrolled student applicants.

Requirements

Must maintain continuous enrollment and submit online form. Recipients are chosen at random. For more information, please contact your Financial Advisor.


Questions?

Reach out to a member of the Financial Aid team at the Online campus:

Financial Aid Team
(866) 508-0748
fa@herzing.edu

1 

Actual semesters to complete are dependent upon university approved transfer credits and program mapping.

2 

Estimated program length, estimated number of semesters, and estimated program shown above are standard by program for each student based on: a student taking a full-time course load each semester, the student not having any transfer credits (from previous Herzing experiences or from other post-secondary institutions), and successful completion of each course.

Current tuition rates for Nursing programs are effective through the Summer 2022 semester, and tuition rates for all non-Nursing programs are effective through the Fall 2022 semester.