Bachelor of Science in Paralegal Studies

Paralegals work in all facets of the legal system - in large and small law firms, in courtrooms, in government and in corporate legal departments. Attorneys recognize the valuable contribution paralegals make in increasing the effectiveness and productivity of the legal system. Accordingly, paralegals perform legal research, conduct interviews, draft documents and complete many tasks critical to the efficient operation of law offices. It should not be noted that paralegals cannot give legal advice or represent a client in a court of law nor engage in other forms of unauthorized practice of law.

The Institute of Legal Studies at Sullivan University began in 1979 and offers programs of study that lead students to challenging and rewarding careers as paralegals. Most paralegal courses are taught by attorneys who not only understand the complexities of the law, but also can instruct students on the practical skills needed to be paralegals.

In addition, the legal reference section of the Sullivan University Library and Learning Resource Center provides access to law books, materials and computerized databases such as LexisNexis® and Westlaw® that enhance the learning potential of all paralegal studies students.

The goals and objectives of The Institute of Legal Studies are to educate students effectively and efficiently for employment as paralegals and to provide graduates with viable employment in the legal field commensurate with their Sullivan University education. All Paralegal Studies programs are approved by The American Bar Association.

Locations: Louisville Lexington

Program Information

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Legal Objectives 01

Objectives

To educate students effectively and efficiently for employment as paralegals and to assist graduates in finding viable employment in the legal field.

Graduates of The Institute for Legal Studies will possess nine competencies*:

  1. Identify and assess ethical and professional responsibility issues.
  2. Define and use legal terminology.
  3. Differentiate federal and state court structure and procedures.
  4. Conduct factual investigations in an organized manner.
  5. Conduct legal research in an organized manner.
  6. Analyze and interpret the law in an organized manner.
  7. Prepare legal documents, including pleadings, memoranda and legally operative forms.
  8. Demonstrate strong communication and interpersonal skills appropriate for the legal field.
  9. Use legal technology and determine its impact on the practice of law.

*Advanced competencies in these areas are required of Bachelor of Science in Paralegal degree graduates.

Program Highlights

  • Ours is one of a limited number of paralegal programs in the country approved by the American Bar Association.
  • The Paralegal Studies curriculum emphasizes practical skills development, such as legal research and legal writing, that is grounded in a firm understanding of litigation, corporate law, real estate law, estate planning, and more.
  • Our program's stature within the legal community, which is fostered through our involvement with the Kentucky Paralegal Association and local paralegal associations in Louisville and Lexington, gives our students and graduates an advantage.
  • Students can draw on the expansive legal reference section within the Sullivan University Library and Learning Resource Center for their studies and research, and also enjoy success to our LexisNexis® and Westlaw® databases.

FAQ's

Paralegal Studies students should possess the following qualities:

  • Writing or communication skills needed day to day; professional business and legal writing skills are a must
  • Personality traits/soft skills the industry looks for:
  • High personal standards
  • Positive work ethic
  • Self-confidence
  • Persistence
  • Assertiveness
  • Initiative
  • A need to know
  • An ability to collect, organize, review, evaluate and draw conclusions
  • Dedication to continuing education and skill development
  • Being a self-starter
  • Technical/hard skills used:
  • Electronic research skills
  • Organizational skills
  • Ability to conceptualize
  • Ability to priortize
  • Time management skills
  • Research skills
  • Document drafting skills
  • Computer skills
Legal Courses 01

Courses

Length: 18 months beyond Associate Degree
Time length for program completion will vary depending upon the number of courses taken per term, development courses when required, transfer credit accepted, lack of continuous enrollment, etc.
Associate Degree or equivalent (see Undergraduate Admissions section for a description of Sullivan's 2 + 2 programs)

Course
Title
Credit Hours
PLS 114
Introduction to Law and the Legal System
4.00
PLS 134
Legal Research
4.00
PLS 144
Legal Writing
4.00
PLS 154
Tort Law
4.00
PLS 184
Business Organizations and Commercial Practice
4.00
PLS 204
Criminal Law
4.00
PLS 214
Estate Planning and Administration
4.00
PLS 224
Litigation
4.00
PLS 234
Real Estate Law
4.00
PLS 244
Domestic Relations/Family Law
4.00
PLS 262
Basic Legal Ethics
2.00
PLS 272
Paralegal Externship or Research Project
2.00
PLS 284
Computers in the Law Office
4.00
PLS 302
Applied Legal Ethics
2.00
PLS 304
Administrative Law
4.00
PLS 314
Advanced Legal Writing with Computer Applications
4.00
PLS 404
Advanced Litigation and Appellate Practice
4.00
PLS 414
Advanced Real Estate Law
4.00
PLS 434
Contemporary Legal Topics
4.00
ACT 101
Principles of Accounting I
4.00
AOM 120
Word Processing I
4.00
BUS 224
Professional Development
4.00
BUS 424
International Business
4.00
CSC 118
Computer Applications I
4.00
CSC 218
Computer Applications II
4.00
MGT 304
Principles of Management
4.00
MGT 344
Organizational Behavior
4.00
MKT 304
Principles of Marketing
4.00
ECO 201
Microeconomics
4.00
ECO 202
Macroeconomics
4.00
ENG 101
Composition I
4.00
ENG 102
Composition II
4.00
ENG 204
Advanced Writing
4.00
GEC 220
Essential Strategies for Applied Communications (ESAC)
4.00
MTH 101
College Mathematics
4.00
MTH 201
College Algebra
4.00
Free Electives
24.00
General Education Electives
20.00
Course:
PLS 114
Title:
Introduction to Law and the Legal System
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 134
Title:
Legal Research
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 144
Title:
Legal Writing
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 154
Title:
Tort Law
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 184
Title:
Business Organizations and Commercial Practice
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 204
Title:
Criminal Law
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 214
Title:
Estate Planning and Administration
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 224
Title:
Litigation
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 234
Title:
Real Estate Law
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 244
Title:
Domestic Relations/Family Law
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 262
Title:
Basic Legal Ethics
Credit Hours:
2.00
Course:
PLS 272
Title:
Paralegal Externship or Research Project
Credit Hours:
2.00
Course:
PLS 284
Title:
Computers in the Law Office
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 302
Title:
Applied Legal Ethics
Credit Hours:
2.00
Course:
PLS 304
Title:
Administrative Law
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 314
Title:
Advanced Legal Writing with Computer Applications
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 404
Title:
Advanced Litigation and Appellate Practice
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 414
Title:
Advanced Real Estate Law
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
PLS 434
Title:
Contemporary Legal Topics
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
ACT 101
Title:
Principles of Accounting I
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
AOM 120
Title:
Word Processing I
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
BUS 224
Title:
Professional Development
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
BUS 424
Title:
International Business
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
CSC 118
Title:
Computer Applications I
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
CSC 218
Title:
Computer Applications II
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
MGT 304
Title:
Principles of Management
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
MGT 344
Title:
Organizational Behavior
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
MKT 304
Title:
Principles of Marketing
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
ECO 201
Title:
Microeconomics
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
ECO 202
Title:
Macroeconomics
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
ENG 101
Title:
Composition I
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
ENG 102
Title:
Composition II
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
ENG 204
Title:
Advanced Writing
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
GEC 220
Title:
Essential Strategies for Applied Communications (ESAC)
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
MTH 101
Title:
College Mathematics
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
MTH 201
Title:
College Algebra
Credit Hours:
4.00
Course:
Free Electives
Credit Hours:
24.00
Course:
General Education Electives
Credit Hours:
20.00
Total Credit Hours: 182.00