SUNY Jefferson

Paralegal AAS

Program Type: Career
Delivery: On-campus 
Personal Interests: Court and legal system
Skills development: Legal, law related paraprofessional 
Career Options: Public service, government
Program Code: HEGIS 5099

A career in the legal system

The Paralegal A.A.S. will prepare you for a paraprofessional career in law related occupations, and is a foundation for future law school study.

You will be prepared in a broad section of legal work, including family law, business law, property law and civil litigation. A strong emphasis is placed on legal research skills and general business management skills.

In addition, if you wish to go on to law school, you will experience the “case method” approach, which is the preferred teaching method in many law schools. Most law courses or topics within this program are similar to those taught in law school.

This program offers:

  • Preparation to be a legal paraprofessional
  • Transferable skill set - earn your degree and use it anywhere
  • Learn from and connect with local attorneys
  • Access to  job opportunities

Experience from the field

The Paralegal A.A.S. program includes an optional internship experience, if you qualify, to gain real-world experience and make contacts in the field for future career networking.

Expect to learn

Graduating from the Paralegal A.A.S program you will:

  • Effectively utilize the technology essential for legal applications
  • Conduct legal research in order to locate, evaluate, analyze, and apply legal information
  • Know how to search for a career in the field 

Work in a fast-paced career

Paralegals act as assistants to attorneys or provide services that would otherwise require an attorney. Plan to work at law offices, financial institutions, or government offices, or you may operate your own business.

Paralegal employment is ideal if you wish to pursue law school admission. Future law students can use their legal employment to defray the high cost of law school and network with numerous law firms. While paralegals may not practice law, they are a key and growing part of the legal industry.

Common tasks include:

  • Preparing legal documents for attorneys’ review
  • Taking depositions and preparing legal case materials
  • Processing legal forms and records
  • Conducting legal research
  • Speaking with clients and managing the marketing, financial, or other aspects of legal practice

Paralegal is one of the top ten fastest-growing occupations in the United States, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. As the demand for legal services in the U.S. continues to grow, paralegals are in demand in government, business, banking/finance, real estate, and other fields. Large law firms are increasingly turning to paralegals to extend their attorney staff and keep legal rates affordable yet widely available.

Go beyond your associate's degree

The Paralegal degree is developed so that you could enter the workforce once you graduate, but you can continue your education.  Many of your credits will transfer.  Jefferson has partnered with select academic institutions and developed transfer agreements that can help you transfer smoothly to specific bachelor's programs. Currently, formal transfer agreements exist with:

  • SUNY Canton, Legal Studies, B.T.
  • California University of Pennsylvania, Science and Technology with a concentration in Legal Studies, B.S. 

Degree Requirements for Paralegal A.A.S.

Liberal Arts Requirements (21 credit hours)

ENG 101: Research and Composition 
Mathematics Elective 
Science Elective 
Humanities Elective 
Liberal Arts Electives 
Social Science Elective 

Business Requirements (16 credit hours)

ACC 101: Accounting Principles 1 
BUS 152: Legal Issues of Small Business 
BUS 127: Management Communications or PLA 275: Paralegal Internship 
BUS 206: Legal Information Management and Technology 
BUS 211: Business Law 1 

Paralegal Requirements (24 credit hours)

PLA 101: Introduction to Law and Paralegalism 
PLA 112: Legal Research & Writing 
PLA 213: Constitutional Law and American Society 
PLA 211: Civil Litigation 
PLA 221: Family and Domestic Relations Law 
PLA 232: Property Law 
PLA 242: Estates, Wills and Trusts 
CRJ 102: Criminal Administrative Procedures 

TOTAL 61 credit hours


Program contact

Larry Covell
Professor of Business, Esq.
(315) 786-2261

Application and Admissions Information
Enrollment Services
Jules Center, building 6, suite 6-010
(315) 786-2437 or toll free 1-888-435-6522