A paralegal career is a wonderful opportunity to become familiar with the processes of law, not to mention finding a stable and well-paying job in an exciting field. Of course, such a job requires a strong commitment to education and work experience. This is why paralegal schools online may be the best solution for you.
For starters, understand that a job as a paralegal will require formal studies in paralegal training or in a related field. Sometimes an Associate Degree is enough to get your foot in the door, but sometimes a bachelor’s degree is preferred. A certificate for successful completion in paralegal studies may also be enough to get started. A firm or an attorney has the choice to train a new paralegal from college, or opt to hire one with work experience.
You can find paralegal schools within community colleges or an online school. Some schools online also offer a Bachelor’s or Master’s Degree in paralegal studies as a subject. Another option is to choose a Bachelor or Master’s Degree in a related subject and then opt for a certificate in paralegal studies.
Reportedly, over 1,000 colleges and universities are currently offering training programs. That sounds like a good figure, right? Unfortunately, only 270 of these programs are officially approved by the American Bar Association—the only association that those in law will considered relevant accreditation.
Besides an accredited school education from top paralegal schools in the country, you might also look into pre-work experience, such as an internship or working for a private law firm as a secretary or similar assignments. When it comes to long-term assignments, most law firms prefer to hire candidates who have at least one year of law firm training. This is why experience, even an internship, is crucial. Besides this, an attorney or law firm wants to know that potential candidates have a technical understanding of certain specialties. (i.e. personal injury law firms look for paralegals who have also worked in nursing or in health professions) In other words, a paralegal is not just a job but part of the team.
Paralegal schools can also prepare you for the career field itself, such as supervisory advancement as well as the environment you must adapt to. Paralegals are expected to have computer skills, interpersonal skills, research skills, technical skills and organization skills. For more information, look into online accredited courses that can teach you these valuable skills.