Making educational choices for your occupational and financial future can be a large leap forward in your life. These are not always easy choices to make, and there can be considerable stress involved. Being informed is crucial to decision making when considering paralegal courses in NYC. Significant questions need to be asked such as:
- How many courses will it take to complete my education?
- Is there general education coursework that is a prerequisite to taking paralegal studies?
- How will I fit the coursework required in my current schedule?
- What are my alternatives of coursework that will allow me to select a particular field of legal study?
These are just some of the many questions you may have when looking into available paralegal courses in NYC. Choosing a course of action and moving forward with it constitutes an important life decision as you move forward with planning your future. Getting those questions answered is the first step to take.
Courses Needed to Complete a Paralegal Education
There are two paths of action that a potential student can choose from when pursuing paralegal courses in NYC. One track a student can choose is to pursue an AOS degree in paralegal studies. This track would require the student to take 60 credit hours of coursework to complete their education.
A student choosing this track could expect to take 21 credit hours of general education coursework such as:
- College English
- College English II
- Oral and Written Communications
- College Mathematics
- Computer Concepts
However, the core of the program lies with the paralegal coursework each student needs to take. The courses directly align with the day-to-day duties of a paralegal in the performance of their profession.
To attain an Associate’s degree in paralegal studies, you must usually complete 36 credit hours of professional coursework along with a professional elective. Your professional coursework will be interspersed throughout each term with your general education courses.
The following is a sample of the coursework a prospective student must accomplish to attain an AOS in paralegal studies. This is an example of a student taking 3 or 4 classes a term. A student who takes 4 or 5 classes a term can complete in 4 or 5 terms or 16-20 months.
Term 1 – College English, Introduction to Law, Computer Concepts
Term 2 – Civil Litigation, Family Law, Law Office Management, College English II
Term 3 – College Math, Legal Research/Writing, Real Estate Law, Psychology
Term 4 – Oral/Written Communications; Contract Law, *Professional Elective
Term 5 – Preparing Legal Documents, Government, Professional Development
Term 6 – Legal Internship, Tort Law, Advanced Legal Research
Please note that this timetable of paralegal courses in NYC is only an illustration and that actual course offerings are contingent upon current enrollment, faculty availability, individual student course selection and transfer and proficiency credit.
Flexibility in Scheduling
In today’s busy world, it can be a challenge to juggle an existing work or family schedule around a college schedule. Preparation for a new career can be both exciting and nerve-wracking as you attempt to make it all work. Most schools understand those challenges.
Whatever scheduling challenges you may face, you can be assured that professional admissions and counseling officers can help guide you through the process to find what works best for you.
Selecting a Field of Study in the Paralegal Profession
While all of your coursework is crucial to a solid footing in becoming a paralegal, two particular courses will bring everything together. One such course is the Legal Internship. The internship program is a culminating experience in which you get to work side-by-side with highly practiced legal professionals.
Having access to superior legal practitioners in a dynamic setting allows for the fulfillment of a rigorous and relevant experience in a professional law office. Developing professional contacts in a real-world legal environment permits networking among potential employers and practitioners which could lead to further career opportunities.
The other course that will help define where you are going is the professional elective. This selection allows you to choose among multiple legal specialties depending upon where your professional passion lies. Courses offered in these specialties could include:
Criminal Law—If your passion is the pursuit of justice, you may choose a criminal law specialty. Exciting opportunities await whether you elect to work as a public defender or for the prosecuting attorney’s office.
Wills, Trusts & Estates—Estate planning is becoming more complex than ever with the ever-changing rules in tax codes.
Corporations—If the fast-paced world of finance is your thing, then maybe working in a field dealing with mergers, spinoffs, sales and corporate structure is the choice for you.
Employment Law—This field is complex as it deals with state and federal law regarding both the rights of employers and employees.
Immigration Law—This area may see increased activity in the coming years as the United States deals with an influx of immigrants from all around the world seeking asylum, work permits or simply a new life in the country. Look for potential growth in this field.
Bankruptcy Law—Many companies and people collapse economically every year. Under Federal law, businesses and people have the right to pursue restructuring or relief from unbearably high debts.
Elder Law—This field looks to provide fairness and security for the most vulnerable in our society, the elderly.
Whichever path you choose, you can be assured that pursuing paralegal courses in NYC will be rewarding for you. They say the journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, and that first step is only moments away.