PARALEGAL

Associate in Arts Degree: Paralegal Studies

The paralegal profession continues to be one of the fastest growing professions in the United States. COC's Paralegal Studies curriculum prepares students for positions as paralegals in order to improve the accessibility, quality, and affordability of legal services. Students who successfully complete the Paralegal Studies Program will have a broad-based understanding of the American legal system and the practice of law in California; the skills and knowledge needed to work as a paralegal in civil litigation law firms; an understanding of and appreciation for the ethical rules and regulations applicable to the paralegal and other legal professionals; a balanced education based on the integration of legal theory and practical course work; strong written and oral communication skills; and the tools necessary to begin a career in a respected and well-paid profession. Successful paralegals have excellent organizational skills and the ability to perform complex, detailed work quickly and accurately, as well as the ability to work well under pressure. Examples of tasks commonly delegated to paralegals include performing legal and public records research, obtaining and organizing evidence, interviewing clients and witnesses, conducting legal research, and drafting legal documents.

Student Learning Outcome:

Students will be able to demonstrate proficiency in the core skills and knowledge required for employment as a paralegal.

Program Requirements:

Units Required: 31
 

    Units
PARLGL-101 Introduction to Law 3.0
PARLGL-104 Contract Law 3.0
PARLGL-105 Tort Law 3.0
PARLGL-106 Legal Analysis and Writing 3.0
PARLGL-107 Legal Ethics 1.0
PARLGL-108 Legal Research 3.0
PARLGL-109 Computer Literacy for Paralegals 3.0
PARLGL-111 Civil Litigation I 3.0
PARLGL-112 Civil Litigation II 3.0
PARLGL-150 Family Law 3.0
PARLGL-200 Paralegal Seminar 1.0
     
Plus a minimum of two units from the following:  
     
CWE-188PLGL Cooperative Work Experience Education 1.0 - 4.0
     
Recommended electives:  
     
PARLGL-140 Bankruptcy 3.0
PARLGL-180 Estate Planning 3.0
POLISC-150 Introduction to American Government and Politics 3.0
OR    
POLISC-150H Introduction to American Government And Politics - Honors 3.0


PARLGL 101 INTRODUCTION TO LAW
Units: 3.00
CSU 54.00 hours lecture
Provides an overview of the history, philosophy, and practices of the legal profession, including paralegals, in the United States while introducing legal concepts, terms, and theories.


PARLGL 104 CONTRACT LAW
Units: 3.00
CSU 54.00 hours lecture
Recommended Preparation: PARLGL-101

Examines contract law, including formation of contracts, statute of frauds, third-party rights and remedies, liability for breach of contract, and the Uniform Commercial Code.


PARLGL 105 TORT LAW
Units: 3.00
CSU 54.00 hours lecture
Recommended Preparation: PARLGL-101

Introduces tort law including the study of negligence, strict liability, and intentional torts.


PARLGL 106 LEGAL ANALYSIS AND WRITING
Units: 3.00
CSU 54.00 hours lecture
Recommended Preparation: ENGL-101 or ENGL-101H

Examines the processes of analysis and writing found within the legal profession, including preparation of legal memoranda.


PARLGL 107 LEGAL ETHICS
Units: 1.00
CSU 18.00 hours lecture
Examines legal ethics and rules of professional responsibility, including unauthorized practices of law, confidentiality, conflicts of interest, and advice and solicitation, as they affect legal professionals.


PARLGL 108 LEGAL RESEARCH
Units: 3.00
CSU 54.00 hours lecture
Recommended Preparation: PARLGL-101

Covers legal research tools (hard copy and computer databases) and strategies, including primary authority (cases, statutes, regulations, and constitution) and secondary authority.


PARLGL 109 COMPUTER LITERACY FOR PARALEGALS
Units: 3.00
CSU 36.00 hours lecture, 54.00 hours lab
Presents the specific software applications and document preparation processes used in the legal profession. Familiarity with computer keyboarding and the Windows operating system is assumed.


PARLGL 111 CIVIL LITIGATION I
Units: 3.00
CSU 54.00 hours lecture
Examines the basic functions and procedures found within a civil law office, including pre-suit considerations, initial pleadings, challenges to pleadings, interrogatories, depositions, discovery law and motion, and the review of legal ethics. Students who have earned credit for PARLGL 110 cannot receive credit for this course.


PARLGL 112 CIVIL LITIGATION II
Units: 3.00
CSU 54.00 hours lecture
Prerequisite: PARLGL-111

Examines the basic functions and procedures found within a civil law office, including third party depositions, discovery subpoenas, request for admissions, demand for inspection, demand for physical or mental exam, calendaring trial deadlines, preparation for motion for summary judgment, trial and appeal, and the review of legal ethics. Students who have earned credit for PARLGL-110 cannot receive credit for this course.


PARLGL 140 BANKRUPTCY
Units: 3.00
CSU 54.00 hours lecture
Overview of the basic functions, procedures and ethics involved when examining various forms of bankruptcy law. Introduces the techniques of intake, preparation, and filing of the necessary forms to resolve bankruptcy cases.


PARLGL 150 FAMILY LAW
Units: 3.00
CSU 54.00 hours lecture
Introduces students to the fundamentals of family law.


PARLGL 180 ESTATE PLANNING
Units: 3.00
CSU 54.00 hours lecture
Focuses on the preparation of wills, trusts, life insurance, annuities, tax issues and administration after death.


PARLGL 200 PARALEGAL SEMINAR
Units: 1.00
CSU 18.00 hours lecture
Prerequisite: PARLGL-101, 105, 106, 107, 108, 109, 111, 112, and POLISC-150 /150H

Provides the capstone course for the Paralegal Program, including interning in a law office or other place of employment of paralegals. Students will review rules of ethics, write resumes, create portfolios, practice interview techniques, and develop skills necessary for employment as a paralegal, while participating in a seminar setting.


PARLGL 201 AGING AND THE LAW
Units: 3.00
CSU 54.00 hours lecture
Examines the legal, ethical, and social issues impacting aging adults as well as introduces law-related documentation processes and procedures used to serve older clients.


Planned Course Offerings 2011-2013

Program website

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