The degree of Associate in Science with a major in Paralegal Studies will be awarded upon successful completion of all program requirements.
The Associate Degree in Paralegal Studies, approved by the American Bar Association, will prepare students to perform effectively in today’s legal and business communities. This program is an expanded version of the Certificate Program. Both programs are approved by the American Bar Association. The Degree trains students for professional status as lawyers’ assistants in banks, corporations, government agencies, insurance companies, and law firms. The program provides students with a broad-based academic curriculum, which emphasizes the skills, substantive knowledge and ethics a paralegal needs to assist lawyers effectively. Graduates may either enter the work force directly after graduation or continue their education at a four-year institution.
The Associate Degree in Paralegal Studies can be completed on a full- or part-time basis. Most major field courses, however, are offered in the evenings at this time. The general education courses are offered both days and evenings.
The work of the paralegal requires discretion and independent judgment. A paralegal always works under the supervision and direction of an attorney. Even though a paralegal can perform many of the tasks which have otherwise been performed by attorneys, a paralegal may not give legal advice, represent a client in court or otherwise engage in the practice of law.
NHTI graduates will be exposed during their course of studies to the legal system and the role of paralegals within the profession, the ethical rules governing lawyers and paralegals, and the operation of a law office. Through the course sequence in the Degree, NHTI’s graduates will be:
- able to assist in most aspects of legal research, and in the preparation of clear and concise legal writings, on a topic of their choosing;
- introduced to Lexis/Nexis;
- able to assist in virtually all phases of litigation and real property transactions;
- able to assist in the formation, daily administration and dissolution of a corporate entity;
- able to assist in the planning and administration of a decedent’s estate;
- prepared to assist in the drafting of pleadings and in the completion of preliminary research in the area of family law;
- exposed to the various elements of New Hampshire criminal practice and procedure.
Specific Admission Requirements
- Interview with department chair; interviews will be scheduled by the department chair once applications are complete.
- Two confidential letters of reference.
- Two-hundred word essay regarding reasons for choosing the Paralegal Program (used to help evaluate writing skills).
Note: Applicants should be aware that all associate degree programs at NHTI require successful completion of at least one semester of college level mathematics. Therefore, the college strongly recommends that all applicants successfully complete high school Algebra I with a grade of “C” or higher prior to admission. Those students whose placement testing does not demonstrate readiness for college level mathematics may require more than two years to complete their degree.
NHTI has developed excellent practicum opportunities for our students to foster hands-on learning while simultaneously receiving credit. Nonetheless, the college’s first priority must be to ensure that patients/clients/children/families are not placed in jeopardy by students during learning experiences. Therefore, students in internship, externship, practicum, service learning, and clinical experiences must demonstrate sufficient emotional stability to withstand the stresses, uncertainties and changing circumstances that characterize patient/client/child/family responsibilities. Furthermore, the student is expected to have the emotional stability required to exercise sound judgment, accept direction and guidance from a supervisor or faculty member, and establish rapport and maintain sensitive interpersonal relationships and confidentiality with employees, customers, and/or patients/clients/children and their families.
Applicants should be aware that background checks are completed by potential employers prior to obtaining any position with arrest or detention powers, and typically, even before being accepted for an internship. Applicants who have been in difficulty with the law may not be employable, or even eligible for an internship. Because future goals may be compromised, applicants are advised to discuss any concerns with the Department Chair.
Paralegal Studies Degree
|Course Number||Course Title||CL||LAB||CR|
|ENGL 101C||English Composition||4||0||4|
|IST 102C||PC Applications||3||0||3|
|#||PLGL 106C||Introduction to Legal Studies||3||0||3|
|#||PLGL 107C||Contracts and Torts||3||0||3|
|PSYC 105C||Introduction to Psychology||3||0||3|
|ACCT 101C||Accounting I||3||0||3|
|ENGL 120C||Communications or|
|ENGL xxxC||English Elective||3-4||0||3-4|
|MATH 124C||College Algebra||4||0||4|
|#||PLGL 110C||Litigation and Trial Preparation||3||0||3|
|#||PLGL 225C||Legal Research and Writing+||3||2||4|
|ACCT 102C||Accounting II||3||0||3|
|PHIL 242C||Contemporary Ethical Issues||3||0||3|
|#||PLGL 221C||Real Estate||3||0||3|
|#||PLGL 251C||Probate Estates and Trusts||3||0||3|
|#||PLGL 262C||Criminal Law and Procedures||3||0||3|
|FL xxxC||Foreign Language or||3||0-2||3-4|
|XX xxxC||General Education Elective||3||0||3|
|#||PLGL 231C||Business Organizations & Bankruptcy||3||0||3|
|#||PLGL 242C||Domestic Relations Law||3||0||3|
|XX xxxC||Lab Science Elective*||3||2||4|
|XX xxxC||Social Science Elective**||3||0||3|
# Indicates major field courses.
CL – Number of lecture/classroom hours per week for the course