Completion of Academic Minor
Why study Paralegal Studies?
As defined by the American Bar Association, "A paralegal is a person qualified by education, training or work experience who is employed or retained by a lawyer, law office, corporation, governmental agency or other entity and who performs specifically delegated substantive legal work for which a lawyer is responsible."
The Paralegal Minor program at the University of Cincinnati is designed to expose students to the field of paralegal studies. This program does NOT prepare students to work as a Paralegal. The utilization of paralegals improves the efficiency, economy and availability of legal services. A paralegal performs substantive legal work under the direct supervision of an attorney. Paralegals must have knowledge and understanding of various legal concepts.
Responsibilities most often assigned to paralegals include maintaining client files, drafting correspondence, performing factual research and legal research, monitoring deadlines, maintaining conflicts-of-interest systems, drafting, investigating and analyzing documents, and acting as liaison with clients and others. Experienced paralegals often accompany counsel during trial and help with document management and organization, witness preparation, and research. These tasks may be performed in a variety of legal areas that include probate, real estate, family law, bankruptcy, corporate, litigation, and intellectual property.
Prospective students should be aware that paralegal education is not the equivalent of a law school education. Graduates of paralegal programs are not qualified or eligible to take the bar examination. Academic credit for paralegal courses is not transferable for advanced standing in law school.
Paralegals may not provide legal services directly to the public, except as permitted by law.
Any matriculated undergraduate student at UC with a 2.0 GPA can apply for the Minor in Paralegal Studies.
Paralegals are expected to write clearly and communicate effectively, both orally and in writing. Paralegals must possess a high degree of motivation and analytical reasoning capability. They need to pay attention to detail. Candidates should also be responsible, well-organized, mature individuals who are sincerely interested in pursuing a career as a paralegal. They must be trustworthy and discreet. Paralegals, like attorneys, are required to hold a position of trust with their client. As a paralegal, you must respect attorney-client confidentiality. Paralegals must possess good "people skills" and be able to work as part of the legal team. Computer skills are essential.
The U.S. Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics has projected the paralegal profession to grow faster than the average for all occupations through 2012. Employment growth stems from law firms and other employers with legal staffs increasingly hiring paralegals to lower the cost and increase the availability and efficiency of legal services. The employment opportunities for program graduates are excellent.
This minor program option does not prepare a student to work as a paralegal. CECH does offer a Bachelor of Science degree in Paralegal Studies for those looking to pursue a career as a paralegal.
This program is open to students enrolled in a baccalaureate program, in good academic standing with a cumulative university grade point average of 2.0, and the desire to succeed. Although admission is open, students accepted into the program must meet the academic standards of the program to advance to upper levels of study. This expectation would include earning a C or higher in all minor coursework.
Interested students should meet with a UC College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services Student Services staff member for appropriate advising. Please note: In order to obtain this certificate, 50 percent or more of the required coursework must be taken from the UC College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services, and the student must have, or be completing a baccalaureate at the University of Cincinnati. Application materials for the certificate/minor program can be located at
This program option is NOT approved by the American Bar Association (ABA).
PO BOX 210014
Cincinnati, OH 45221