Earn Your Paralegal Certificate Online or On-Campus
Position yourself for a successful legal career with UMass Lowell's 6-course paralegal certificate online. The Certificate in Paralegal Studies explores the role of paralegals in both the public and private sectors while learning a mix of legal theory and skills. Upon program completion, you will gain an understanding of legal concepts and vocabulary, the litigation process, the principles of jurisprudence and legal issues that influence modern business practices. You may complete this program through online and on-campus courses.
All credits earned in this certificate may be applied to the Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice: Paralegal option or the Bachelor of Liberal Arts: Legal Studies Concentration.
- Paralegals and Legal Assistants
- Compliance Officers
- Legal Secretaries and Administrative Assistants
- Title Examiners, Abstractors and Searchers
- Legal Support Workers
"Employment of paralegals and legal assistants is projected to grow 10 percent from 2019 to 2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. As law firms try to increase the efficiency of legal services and reduce their costs, they are expected to hire more paralegals and legal assistants."
Gain a foundational knowledge of a wide range of legal matters, including:
- Legal research processes and written reports, case briefs and memoranda
- Litigation procedures such as discovery, pleadings, motions and depositions, and trials and appeals
- rReal estate deeds, title examinations, brokerage contracts, and tenant rights and liabilities
- Legal concepts and terminology related to core estate planning tools
- Utilize Lexis Advance for legal research and prepare to earn the Lexis Paralegal Certificate of Mastery
One Success Leads to Another
Apply credits from lower credentials to higher ones. Our programs are designed to build upon themselves:
Students who successfully complete the Paralegal Studies Certificate Program can count all of the courses from the certificate program towards UMass Lowell's B.S. in Criminal Justice: Paralegal Option or Bachelor of Liberal Arts: Legal Studies Concentration program.
- 6 Courses (18cr)
Required Courses (4 / 12cr)
- LGST.1030 Introduction to Paralegal Studies (3cr) - Available Summer 2023!
- LGST.3700 Real Estate Law (3cr) - Available Summer 2023!
- LGST.3870 Legal Research Methods (3cr) - Available Summer 2023!
- LGST.3900 Litigation (3cr) - Available Summer 2023!
Electives (Choose 2 / 6cr)
- LGST.2620 Introduction to Business Law (3cr) - Available Summer 2023!
- LGST.3630 Corporate and Property Law (3cr)
- LGST.3660 International Law (3cr)
- LGST.3670 Environmental Law (3cr)
- LGST.3760 Family Law (3cr) - Available Summer 2023!
- LGST.3810 Women and the Law (3cr)
- LGST.3830 Alternative Dispute Resolution (3cr)
- LGST.3860 Intellectual Property (3cr)
- LGST.3920 Wills,Trusts and Estates (3cr) - Available Summer 2023!
- LGST.4970 Legal Studies Practicum (3cr)
Undergraduate Certificate Requirements
Students enrolled in UMass Lowell certificate programs must complete all courses and maintain a grade point average of 2.0 or better to earn the certificate. All certificate courses must be completed within a five-year period.
Students who successfully complete the certificate program should submit a Certificate Petition Form to have their certificate mailed to them.
Tuition & Fees
Tuition at UMass Lowell is typically half the cost of private colleges, and our online tuition is among the lowest in the nation. Tuition for online programs offered through the Division of Graduate, Online & Professional Studies is the same whether you live in-state, out-of-state or outside of the U.S.
Summer 2023 Tuition
|Cost Per Credit||Cost Per 3-Credit Course*|
|On Campus Lowell||$340||$1,020|
|On Campus Haverhill||$300||$900|
|Term Registration Fee||$30|
Please note: Tuition and fees are subject to change.
Estimate the cost of this program with our online tuition calculator
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Frequently Asked Questions
Does a paralegal certificate need to be ABA approved?
Paralegal certificates are not required to be ABA-approved. Very few employers require new hires to complete an ABA-approved certificate program. Regardless of whether you complete an ABA-approved certificate or not, you should plan to complete a certification exam through the National Federation of Paralegal Associations or National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA) to qualify for positions in the field.
Although many employers do not require completion of ABA-approved certificate programs, they do encourage legal assistants and paralegals to pursue bachelor's degrees. While not ABA-approved, credits earned in UMass Lowell's paralegal certificate can be applied to either the Bachelor of Science in Criminal Justice: Paralegal option or our Bachelor of Liberal Arts: Legal Studies Concentration.
If I complete the certificate in paralegal studies, will I be a "certified" paralegal?
Many confuse paralegal certificates and certification. The certificate you achieve through our program at UMass Lowell is an academic credential that verifies you have completed an educational program of study. However, to achieve certification, you must complete a certification exam through the National Federation of Paralegal Associations or the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA) and possibly fulfill other requirements, including work experience.
Your state may provide state-level certifications through the state bar association.
What skills do paralegals need?
Paralegals require strong reading, writing, computer, research, and critical thinking skills. Paralegals tend to be highly organized, can work well independently, communicate well with others, and pay close attention to detail.
Will I find a job as a paralegal
Employment opportunities for paralegals are excellent. The Bureau of Labor Statistics projects faster than average career outlook growth for paralegals through 2030.
Where do paralegals work?
While most paralegals are employed at law firms, the knowledge and skills that paralegals possess are applicable to many different work environments. Paralegal jobs are widely available in such places as:
- Corporate legal departments
- Government agencies
- Financial institutions
- Real estate companies
- Insurance businesses
- Consulting firms
- Healthcare providers
What are the types of paralegals?
A paralegal career can focus on several different legal areas such as real estate, litigation, business, personal injury, international law, estate planning, criminal law, intellectual property environmental law, bankruptcy, immigration and family law.
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 Graduate, Online & Professional Studies at the address below. Applications, transcripts, and other correspondence should be sent to:
University of Massachusetts Lowell
Division of Graduate, Online & Professional Studies
839 Merrimack Street, 2nd Floor
Lowell, MA 01854
Undergraduate certificate applications are accepted on an ongoing basis and there is no fee to apply. You will be notified upon acceptance.
Questions Regarding Your Undergraduate Application?
Email OCE_Admissions@uml.edu or call 978-934-2474.
For General Assistance:
Call the Advising Center at 978-934-2474 or 800-480-3190. Our academic advisors are here to help!