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Paralegal Studies - B.A. PDFDownload to print

College of Arts and Sciences
Department of Sociology-Paralegal Studies Program

113 Bowman Hall
Tel: 330-672-2562


The Bachelor of Arts in Paralegal Studies is approved by the American Bar Association. This program combines a liberal arts/general education background with law-related specialty courses to provide students with communication, critical reasoning and analytical skills; knowledge of the legal system; and practical hands-on experience. A Paralegal Studies minor is also available.

Career Opportunities

The U.S. Department of Labor continues to predict that paralegal jobs will be growing faster than average. The legal market has a high demand for skilled paralegals with a four year degree, from ABA approved institutions.  Kent State graduates are prepared for careers in private law offices, public agencies, corporations, legal services, and law-related occupations in corporations, banks, and other business entities.  The rate of job placement for graduates has been high.  Kent State graduates are employed by some of the most prestigious law firms in the country. All students in Paralegal Studies must complete an internship course in a legal setting prior to graduation which may result in a permanent position. (Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics)

The use of paralegals in law firms and other law related settings greatly enhances the accessibility of legal services. Therefore, employers are placing an increased emphasis on the hiring of paralegals to perform tasks that many young attorneys can perform. Although private law firms are the largest consumer of paralegal services many legal departments of corporations and government entities also utilize paralegals. For example, estate and trust departments of large banks, health care entities, insurance companies and real estate related organizations are continually finding that employing paralegals is an effective way to perform legal services.

  • Private Law Firms
  • Law Departments of Corporations
  • Banks
  • Insurance Companies
  • Government Agencies
  • Legal Services/Legal Aid Offices
  • Special Interest Groups/Associations
  • Criminal Law Offices
  • Freelance or Independent Paralegals
  • Service Companies
  • Consulting Firms

For more information for career opportunities please visit

Admission Requirements

General Admissions for Freshman Students: Students most likely to be admitted and succeed at the Kent Campus are those who have graduated with at least 16 units of the recommended college preparatory curriculum in high school, who have achieved a cumulative high school grade point average of 2.5 or higher (on a 4.0 scale), and whose composite ACT score is 21 or better (980 combined critical reading and math SAT score). For more information on admissions, visit the admissions website for new freshmen.

General Admissions for Transfer Students: Generally, a transfer applicant who has taken 12 or more semester hours with a college cumulative GPA of at least 2.0 on a 4.0 scale may be admitted. An applicant who has taken fewer than 12 semester hours will be evaluated on both collegiate and high school records. For more information on admissions, visit the admissions website for transfer students.

Graduation Requirements

Minimum 121 total credit hours and 42 upper-division hours for graduation. Minimum 2.000 GPA overall and 2.000 GPA in major required for graduation.

Program Learning Outcomes

Graduates of this program will be able to:

1. Analyze a legal problem as well as identify and evaluate alternative solutions.

2. Formulate logical solutions to problems and construct logical arguments in support of specific positions as well as evaluate solutions and arguments.

3. Determine which areas of law are relevant to a particular situation.

4. Apply principles of professional ethics to specific factual situations.

5. Identify interrelationships among cases, statutes, regulations, and other legal authorities.

6. Apply recognized legal authority to a specific factual situation.

7. Analyze factual situations to determine when it is appropriate to apply exceptions to general legal rules.

8. Apply exceptions to general legal rules.

9. Distinguish evidentiary facts from other material and/or controlling facts.

10. Identify factual omissions and inconsistencies.

Study Abroad/Away Opportunities

There are many study abroad/away opportunities, for more information contact the Office of International Affairs.


American Bar Association at the Kent Campus only

Student Organizations

Kent State Paralegal Organization

Type Legend: DD Diversity–Domestic; DG Diversity–Global; ELR Experiential Learning; KAD Kent Core Additional; KBS Kent Core Basic Sciences; KCM Kent Core Composition; KFA Kent Core Fine Arts: KHU Kent Core Humanities; KMC Kent Core Mathematics and Critical Reasoning; KSS Kent Core Social Sciences; WIC Writing Intensive

Please read the sections in the University Catalog on Kent Core, diversity, writing-intensive and the experiential learning requirements.

Type Course Title Credits
  US 10097 Destination Kent State: First Year Experience 1
II.   MAJOR PROGRAM REQUIREMENTS (42 credits)*  Courses count in major GPA 
Type Course Title Credits
  PLST 18000 Introduction to Paralegal Studies 3
    28001 Legal Research and Writing 3
    28004 Principles and Practice of Litigation 3
ELR   36792 Internship in Paralegal** 6
WIC   38006 Applied Legal Research and Litigation*** 3
  Choose from the following: Legal Specialty Electives 24
  PLST 28003 Family Law and Procedure (3)  
    28007 Estate and Probate Administration (3)  
    35001 Environmental Law for Paralegals (3)  
    35003 Health Law (3)  
    35005 Labor and Employment Law for Paralegals (3)  
    35007 Energy and Natural Resources Law (3)  
    38002 Contract Law (3)  
    38003 Administrative Law and Process (3)  
    38004 Legal Ethics and Professional Responsibility (3)  
    38005 Tort Law (3)  
    48300 Law of Corporations and Other Associations (3)  
    48401 Patent Law (3)  
    48402 Copyright and Trademark Law (3)  
Type Course Title Credits
  Foreign Language**** 14-20
  Kent Core Composition 6-8
  Kent Core Mathematics and Critical Reasoning 3-5
  Kent Core Humanities and Fine Arts (minimum one course from each) 9
  Kent Core Social Sciences (must be from two disciplines) 6
  Kent Core Basic Sciences (must include one laboratory) 6-7
  Kent Core Additional 6
  College General Requirement (must be from Kent Core Basic Sciences)***** 3
  College General Requirement (must be from Kent Core Social Sciences)****** 3
  General Electives (upper division)
Credits required depends on meeting minimum 121 credit hours and minimum 42 upper-division credit hours

* All courses taken from the list of major program requirements are used in the calculation of the major GPA.

** Although required minimum hours for internship is 6 credits, it is recommended that students enroll in more than one internship. These hours are to be taken near the end of completion of the program and can be taken over several semesters. General elective hours can be used for internship hours.

*** A minimum C (2.000) grade must be earned to fulfill the writing-intensive requirement.

**** Fulfills College General Requirement.

*****One additional course taken from the Kent Core Basic Science courses in the following Arts and Sciences disciplines: Anthropology (ANTH), Biological Sciences (BSCI), Chemistry (CHEM), Geography (GEOG), Geology (GEOL) or Physics (PHY). Students may take the courses listed in the "introductory" sequences with the restrictions noted above in the Kent Core Basic Science section. The course may not be from the student's major.

******One additional course taken from the Kent Core Social Sciences courses in the following Arts and Sciences disciplines: Anthropology (ANTH), Applied Conflict Management (CACM), Geography (GEOG), Criminology and Justice Studies (JUS), Political Science (POL), Psychology (PSYC) or Sociology (SOC). The course may not be from the student's major.

Foreign Language Note: Students pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in the College of Arts and Sciences must have the equivalent of Elementary I and II in any language, plus one of the following options:

a. Intermediate I and II of the same language
b. Elementary I and II of a second language
c. Any combination of two courses from the following list:
    -Intermediate I of the same language
    -MCLS 10001 Introduction to Structural Concepts for Language Students
    -MCLS 20000 Global Literacy and Cultural Awareness
    -MCLS 20091 Seminar: Global Literacy Case Studies

All students with prior foreign language experience should take the foreign language placement test to determine the appropriate level at which to start. Some students may begin their university foreign language experience beyond the Elementary I level and will complete the requirement with fewer credit hours and fewer courses. This may be accomplished by: (1) passing a course beyond Elementary I through Intermediate II level or (2) receiving credit through Credit by Exam (CBE), the College Level Examination Program (CLEP), the Advanced Placement (AP) exam or credit through the International Baccalaureate (IB) program; or (3) being designated a "native speaker" of a non-English language (consult with the College of Arts and Sciences Advising Office for additional information). When students complete the requirement with fewer than 14 credit hours and four courses, they will complete remaining hours with general electives.