People who are thinking about paralegal school often wonder, how long does it take to become a paralegal?
Thankfully, there are a variety of options for training and education when it comes to paralegal work. You can even get a position at a law firm with a high school diploma to jump-start your career.
Once you begin work as a paralegal, you can get more schooling to further your education and career. The more education and training you get, the better your job prospects will be. Plus, any additional training will undoubtedly earn you a higher paralegal salary.
How Many Years Does It Take to Become a Paralegal?
Depending on where you go for your schooling or the program you are interested in, it can take anywhere from one to four years to become a paralegal.
One of the main ways to become a paralegal is to get an associate’s degree in paralegal studies from a community college. If you want more education, you can also get a bachelor’s or master’s degree from a college or university.
Associates degree programs typically take two years if you can schedule a full slate of classes. Bachelor’s and master’s degrees can take four years or more to complete.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Paralegal Certificate or a Paralegal Certification?
Although a certificate and a certification sound similar to each other, certificates and certifications are vastly different when working as a paralegal.
A certificate in paralegal work is earned by students who complete a program in school. The certificate shows that students have completed all the required courses to become a paralegal.
On the other hand, certification is used to show that you have the practical knowledge to be a paralegal. State-run agencies and professional organizations offer certifications for people who already have a degree in different fields of study.
The certification shows you have the knowledge to become a paralegal. A certification is typically obtained by those who want to change careers and become a full-time paralegal.
Interested in a Career as a Paralegal?
Paralegals are valuable employees that help ensure a law office runs smoothly.
If you are interested in paralegal work, check out Stratford Career Institute’s course on becoming a paralegal today. Stratford’s Legal Assistant/Paralegal course is a career-focused course designed to help students determine if a supportive career in the legal system is of interest to them.
The course includes information on the following areas:
- The law office setting,
- Duties of a paralegal,
- The discovery process,
- The framework of a lawsuit,
- Civil litigation and the paralegal,
- The framework of a civil lawsuit,
- Expert witnesses and trial preparation,
- From initial case development to trial technology,
- Post trial motions and appeals,
- Court systems in the United States,
- The anatomy of criminal prosecution,
- Legal citation,
- The writing process for effective legal writing, and
- Court briefs.
Interested in Becoming a Paralegal
Ready for the next steps? Begin a career as a paralegal by enrolling in our online course.