Welcome to our Online Paralegal Certificate Program
The Center for Professional Excellence at UTSA is proud to offer its Paralegal Certificate Program online. This is the same successful curriculum enjoyed by students on the UTSA campus since the early 1990's.
Congratulations on exploring the paralegal profession, which is one of the fastest growing occupations in the country. This intensive, non-credit professional development program trains students to be knowledgeable, ethical and effective assistants to attorneys and emphasizes those legal areas where paralegals are most in demand. Paralegals, also called legal assistants, perform many legal tasks under attorney supervision, such as legal research, document drafting, fact investigation, case management and preparation for trial. The program assumes no legal knowledge, but rather builds skills from the ground up at an accelerated rate. It is appropriate for those entering the paralegal profession, as well as those seeking to advance in the field.
The program is comprised of three courses: Paralegal 1, Paralegal 2, and Paralegal 3, approximately 12 weeks each, and the courses must be taken in sequence. The entire program, designed to quickly and efficiently develop the job skills demanded by legal employers, can be completed in as little as one year. Although students will receive a broad-based education developing the knowledge needed to work in any jurisdiction, the program recognizes that the law varies from state to state and uniquely prepares students to work in a Texas law office. Upon successful completion of the program, participants receive the UTSA Online Paralegal Certificate, recognized by employers. The program, along with college credit or experience as a legal assistant, qualifies you to sit for the NALA National Certified Legal Assistant Exam, though some employers do not require the CLA exam certification to work as a paralegal.
The nature of the program is demanding, and the sessions move quickly. All the lectures, assignments and exams, with the exception of onsite field trips to the library and courthouse, can be completed entirely online, and there is no requirement to come to the UTSA campus. Although the amount of time a student will be expected to devote to the course is significant (at least 10 hours per week), so is the benefit: you will complete your paralegal training in only one year. We understand that your time is valuable, and you want to get in, get excellent training and get out to take advantage of the career opportunities and earning potential that your education can provide.
The UTSA Online Paralegal Certificate Program recognizes the student's need for career development information specific to the paralegal field. It addresses that need by instructing students in the practical aspects of paralegal job hunting and resume preparation specific to the legal industry. In addition, participants will enjoy learning the valuable insights presented by practicing paralegals, illustrating their individual career paths and particular legal duties on the job. For more information on career opportunities, salaries, and NALA's Certified Legal Assistant Exam, visit www.nala.org. For information in Texas, visit www.txpd.org, and then click membership information. Another excellent source of career information is the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Outlook Handbook, published online at www.dol.gov.
Program Coordinator and Participating Institution
Ms. Arianna Duggan
Paralegal Program Coordinator
Center for Professional Excellence
The University of Texas at San Antonio
One UTSA Circle
San Antonio, Texas 78249-0634