Available entirely online or as a mix of on campus and online courses!

Certificate Program in Paralegal Studies

Take your career to new levels by becoming a paralegal. UMass Lowell's certificate in paralegal studies explores a variety of legal topics and can be completed entirely online at a pace that fits your schedule.

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Your Future in Paralegal Studies Starts Here

The Certificate Program in Paralegal Studies offers a unique mix of legal theory and practical skills applications. The program features a variety of courses in legal studies such as Real Estate Law, Legal Research Methods, and Litigation. Students are able to customize their program by selecting two electives from courses such as Family Law, Corporate and Property Law, Wills, Trusts and Estates, and Women and the Law to name a few.

All of the courses in the certificate program may be applied to the Bachelor's Degree in Criminal Justice: Paralegal Option or the Bachelor's Degree in Liberal Arts with the Legal Studies Concentration.

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Curriculum Outline

- 6 Courses (18cr)

The Benefits of Learning Online with UMass Lowell

The University has built a solid reputation by offering one of the largest selections of online programs available through a traditional university. Courses are taught by full-time faculty who are experts in their fields, and by adjunct faculty who, as practicing professionals, bring real-world experience to the online class discussions.

At UMass Lowell, we are committed to providing you with high-quality, affordable online programs that make earning your degree or certificate more convenient than ever before. Our students have access to online course technical support 24X7, and our academic advisors and program coordinators are happy to help you with your questions.

For More Information

- For additional information on any of our programs, call Online and Continuing Education at (978) 934-2474 or email Continuing_Education@uml.edu .
- For information on Financial Aid, call the Financial Aid Office at (978) 934-4220.

Gainful Employment Disclosure Information

Completion rates, median loan debts and program costs are outlined in the Graduate Certificate Gainful Employment Disclosure Information.

Course Descriptions

LGST.1030 Introduction to Paralegal Studies

This course familiarizes students with the role of paralegals in both the public and private sector. Other topics include principles of jurisprudence and basic legal concepts and terminology. 3 credits.

LGST.3630 Corporate and Property Law

This course studies the law pertaining to business entities and structures. Partnerships, limited partnerships, and joint ventures are studied at the outset of the course. The main emphasis is on elements of the corporate structure. The last part of the course deals with personal and real property with coverage of wills and trusts. This course is highly recommended for pre-law students, CPA students, and paralegal students. 3 credits.

LGST.3660 International Law

This course provides a broad introduction to international law with emphasis on current issues. Within public international law, topics covered will include the recognition of new states, organizations such as the United Nations and the European Union, the use of force, human rights, international crimes, the global environment, and international courts and tribunals. Within private international law, topics surveyed will include legal aspects of international trade and foreign investment, labor, intellectual property, cyber theft, and taxation. Current issues discussed will include global warming, recent corruption scandals, the Eurozone crisis, and legal issues facing global technology companies. 3 credits.

LGST.3670 Environmental Law

This course examines the legal and administrative problems of protecting the quality of the human environment. Federal and state legislation on environmental policy is studied. Public interest litigation as a supplement to the enforcement of environmental law is discussed. The course also focuses on the practical problems of balancing the needs of business, the global competitiveness of the United States, the increasing demand for natural resources, and the need to protect, preserve, and restore the environment. The importance of sustainable development and environmental ethics are discussed. 3 credits.

LGST.3700 Real Estate Law

This course examines contracts for the sale of real estate, deeds, title examinations, security for real estate transactions, methods and problems of co-ownership, zoning ordinances, brokerage contracts, leases and landlord, and tenant rights and liabilities. 3 credits.

LGST.3760 Family Law

This course studies the critical family law issues facing society today. Subject matter examined may include the law of marriage, custody, adoption, divorce, child support, juveniles, right to die, fetal tissue transfer to prolong the life of another, reproduction control, and surrogate parenting. This course is taught from a legal and human values perspective. 3 credits.

LGST.3810 Women and the Law

This course presents legal issues that often or particularly affect women. Topics may include sex discrimination, sexual harassment, rape, marriage, divorce, reproductive control, surrogate motherhood, and custody. 3 credits.

LGST.3830 Alternative Dispute Resolution

The traditional trial is becoming increasingly rare in modern civil litigation; the large majority of disputes are resolved by other techniques. This course will examine alternative methods of dispute resolution such as negotiation, mediation, arbitration, and the mini trial. 3 credits.

LGST.3860 Intellectual Property

This course surveys the law of the protection of ideas, trade secrets, inventions, artistic creations, and reputation. The course will briefly review the law of patent, trademark, copyright, trade secret, and geographical indication. The course will cover the distinction between the various forms of intellectual property, and the statutory and common law methods of enforcing rights. 3 credits.

LGST.3870 Legal Research Methods

This course introduces students to the fundamentals of legal research and writing. Students will gain hands-on experience in legal research and in the reporting of such research in written assignments, case briefs, and memoranda. 3 credits.

LGST.3900 Litigation

This course examines the practices and procedures involved in the litigation process. Topics may include: legal research, courts and jurisdictions, evidence and discovery, pleadings, motions, depositions, trials and appeals, and federal rules of procedure. 3 credits.

LGST.3920 Wills,Trusts and Estates

This course provides an introduction to the law of wills, trusts, and estates. This course covers the fundamental legal concepts and vocabulary necessary to understand, draft, and work with the core estate planning tools. Practical examples and sample legal cases and materials will be provided and discussed. No prior legal knowledge is required, though some familiarity with the United States legal system or case law will be helpful. 3 credits.

LGST.4970 Legal Studies Practicum

This course consists of assigned fieldwork under the supervision and with the permission of the coordinator. The course is designed to broaden the educational experience of legal studies students by providing exposure to selected legal environments such as corporate legal departments, financial institutions, law firms, real estate departments, banks and government offices and agencies. This provides a correlation of theoretical knowledge with practical experience in an area of interest to students. 3 credits.

Certificate Requirements

Students enrolled in UMass Lowell certificate programs must complete all courses, generally consisting of both required courses and electives. Students may complete the certificate program at their own pace, enrolling in one or two courses each semester. Courses on-campus typically meet one night per week, three hours each night, during the Fall and Spring semesters. Online students generally log on to their course site one or more times per week to retrieve lectures and assignments or to participate in a chat session. For more information on online courses, visit our online program home page.

In addition to the Fall and Spring semesters, students may also have the opportunity to accelerate their programs of study during two concentrated six-week Summer sessions. Online courses are also offered during the Summer semester, but typically run from May through August unless otherwise noted. All students should anticipate at least two hours of preparation for every hour of classroom instruction. Students are required to maintain a grade point average of 2.0 or better to receive the certificate.

Certificate Completion

Upon successful completion of the certificate program, students must submit a completed Certificate Petition Form to Online and Continuing Education. Upon verification, students will be mailed their certificates. Receipt of the certificate will be noted formally on the student's transcript with an award date of October, February, or June.

Registration

The Division of Online and Continuing Education offers courses during the Fall, Spring and Summer semesters. Approximately 2 months prior to the start of each semester, we post the upcoming semester course schedule on our website. Once you know which course(s) you would like to take, current students can register using SIS self-service, while new students, who have not already applied and been accepted into the program, must use the Non Degree Registration Form.

You may take courses without being officially enrolled in a certificate or degree program, but you must meet the particular course prerequisites. Registrations are accepted on a first come, first served basis. Class size is limited. We recommend that you register early to reserve your place in class.

If you would like to be notified by email when we post our next semester's course schedule, click here.

For more information, please visit our Registration Information Page.

Tuition

Please refer to our tuition and fees page for up-to-date pricing information or refer to the Online and Continuing Education Course Bulletin each semester.

Transfer Policy

With the program coordinator's approval, one course may be transferred from another accredited institution to satisfy undergraduate certificate program requirements. The course should be equivalent to UMass Lowell instruction, applicable to the intended program, and the student must have received a grade equivalent to a C- (1.70 on a 4.00 scale) or better.

Academic Advising

Program Coordinators and Faculty and Student Support Specialists are available by appointment to help students determine appropriate course loads, discuss admission requirements, and review the transferability of courses. For online advising, email us at Continuing_Education@uml.edu. To schedule an appointment with a Program Coordinator or Faculty and Student Support Specialist, please call Online and Continuing Education at (978) 934-2474. General academic advising is also available at the Faculty and Student Support Center on a drop-in basis, located in Southwick Hall, Room 203 on UMass Lowell North. Call (978) 934-2474 or stop by the office Monday through Thursday between 8:30am-8:00pm and on Friday between 8:30am-5:00pm.

New Students

If you have not already applied and been accepted to the program.
Register with Non Degree Reg. Form

Current Students

If you have applied, been accepted and currently in a program.
Register with SIS self-service

Questions:

Online & Continuing Ed Support:
Email our Student Support Center for assistance, or call for advising at (800) 480-3190 and press 1 to speak with an advisor.

Restrictions

RESIDENTS OF Arkansas, Kansas and Minnesota: State and federal laws require colleges and universities to be authorized to offer online degree programs in states other than their own. Due to these regulations, the University of Massachusetts Lowell is unable to accept applications or registrations for online courses, degrees or certificate programs from residents of Arkansas, Kansas or Minnesota. Current UML students that move their residence to one of these states should contact Catherine_Hamilton@uml.edu in Online and Continuing Education to determine their eligibility to continue their program of study.

Please Note: While every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information presented within this website, the Division of Online and Continuing Education reserves the right to implement new rules and regulations and to make changes of any nature in its program, calendar, locations, tuition, and fees. Whenever possible, appropriate notice of such changes will be given before they become effective. In registering for courses, each student assumes full responsibility for knowledge of and compliance with the definitions, regulations, and procedures for the University as set forth in our Academic Policies & Procedures and on the main UMass Lowell website.

Applying into an Undergraduate Certificate Program

Apply to an undergraduate certificate program using the Online Application Form or by printing and completing the Undergraduate Certificate Application Form in .pdf file format. Applicants will be required to have either their official high school transcript, HiSET®, GED® or their most recent college transcript if applicable, sent to Continuing Education at the address below. Applications, transcripts, and other correspondence should be sent to:

University of Massachusetts Lowell
Division of Online & Continuing Education
OCE Admissions - Southwick Hall, Rm 203
1 University Avenue
Lowell, MA, 01854

Undergraduate certificate applications are accepted on an ongoing basis and there is no fee to apply. Upon acceptance, notification will be sent to students.

Apply Online

Questions Regarding Your Undergraduate Application?

Email OCE_Admissions@uml.edu or call (978) 934-2474.

For General Assistance:

Call the Online and Continuing Education Student Support Center at (978) 934-2474 or (800) 480-3190. Our team of Student Support Specialists are here to help!

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Check the Status of Your Application

Fees

Applications are accepted on an ongoing basis and there is no fee to apply. Upon acceptance, notification will be sent to students.

Restrictions

RESIDENTS OF Arkansas, Kansas and Minnesota: State and federal laws require colleges and universities to be authorized to offer online degree programs in states other than their own. Due to these regulations, the University of Massachusetts Lowell is unable to accept applications or registrations for online courses, degrees or certificate programs from residents of Arkansas, Kansas or Minnesota. Current UML students that move their residence to one of these states should contact Catherine_Hamilton@uml.edu in Online and Continuing Education to determine their eligibility to continue their program of study.