Do meaningful work.

Prepare to become part of the legal team.

Paralegals assist lawyers in their casework by doing tasks that lawyers typically perform. Paralegals conduct in-depth research and fact-finding, draft legal documents, meet with clients, help prepare for trials, and stay on top of changing laws and new legal trends—all under the direction of a lawyer. It’s intellectually challenging work that demands high-level skills and innovative thinking. 

Discover Your
New Career

FAQ'S

  • How can I send a copy of my official transcripts to another organization?

    To access your transcripts, log into the SOLAR System, select the Star System and select the Academic Office. Once there, click on the transcripts link.

  • Is Baker accredited?

    Yes. Baker College is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission / 230 South LaSalle St., Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL 60604-1411 / 800-621-7440 / www.ncahlc.org.

    Baker College is an Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) participant.

    Additional Accreditations

    Baker has also earned specialized accreditations for programs and degrees in: 

    • Business Administration
    • Early Childhood Learning
    • Engineering and Technology
    • Health Sciences
    • School of Nursing

    For details about these specialized accreditations, see the individual Programs and Degrees pages. 

  • Does Baker provide any help in my job search?


    As a graduate of Baker College, you are eligible for our Lifetime Employment Services, which include:

    • Job searching techniques
    • Resume and cover letter assistance
    • Job interview questions
    • Job postings
    • Relocation tips

     

  • Is Baker College Online accredited?

    Baker Online is part of Baker College, a private, non-profit, accredited, degree granting, higher educational institution with locations throughout Michigan.

    As an accredited college, Baker College has been granted legal authority by the state of Michigan to operate as a nonprofit educational corporation and is empowered to grant certificates, associate, bachelor, master, and doctoral degrees. It is approved for veterans’ benefits. Baker College is recognized as an institution of higher education by the U.S. Secretary of Education, U.S. Department of Education.

    All Baker Online undergraduate and graduate programs are accredited by The Higher Learning Commission / 230 South LaSalle St., Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL 60604-1411 / 800-621-7440 / www.ncahlc.org

    Baker College is an Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) participant.

    Some Baker Online graduate programs have additional accreditation:

  • How do online classes work?


    After you enroll, and are accepted to your online program, you sign-up, or "register" for your first courses. Like all Baker Online students, you will begin your online experience with a three-week online class designed to orient you to the Baker Online classroom, and review the expectations and requirements of Baker Online students. When you have completed this course successfully, you can move on to additional online courses.

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Program Availability

Program availability varies by campus. Please contact the Admissions Department on your campus to learn more.

General Requirements

A general education core is required for all Associate and Bachelor degrees. All graduates must meet the general education requirements established by each academic program.

College Success Strategies (COL111A) or College Success Online (COL112) is required for all first-time freshmen and all online students enrolled in a certificate or degree program. This course will inform students of campus services, policies and procedures, and address learning styles and study strategies.

Many of the courses and programs at Baker College are offered in an online delivery format. See Online Programs. Contact your campus Academic / Administrative Office for details about online courses.

Getting Started

There's a lot you can learn about Baker College here on the Web, but talking with an admissions advisor will help you get a better understanding of everything we offer. Contact us to request more information, schedule a visit to the campus nearest you, or get started by applying online.

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Testimonial Image - Carla Spalding
Testimonial quote

There’s a place for an accountant in every business—in every industry...

Carla Spalding
Baker Accounting Program
Paralegal Associate Degree from Baker College

ParalegalAssociate of Business

Do meaningful work.

Prepare to become part of the legal team.

Paralegals assist lawyers in their casework by doing tasks that lawyers typically perform. Paralegals conduct in-depth research and fact-finding, draft legal documents, meet with clients, help prepare for trials, and stay on top of changing laws and new legal trends—all under the direction of a lawyer. It’s intellectually challenging work that demands high-level skills and innovative thinking. 

Discover Your Future Paralegal Career

Career Facts

$46,990

Median salary for Paralegals and Legal Assistants

17%

Estimated increase by 2022

$70,606

Median salary for Paralegal Supervisors

View citations
Overview

The Baker Paralegal associate degree program is designed to develop the knowledge and skills you need to assist a lawyer efficiently and effectively. Our curriculum blends classroom theory with practical, hands-on training and experience, so you learn all the essentials—how to conduct in-depth research, prepare memoranda, draft legal documents, work with clients, assist in court, interview witnesses, and more.

When you graduate, you’ll be prepared for entry-level employment in any type of legal office, including private law firms, corporations, government agencies, and other organizations.

As a paralegal, you are qualified by education, training, or work experience to be employed or retained by a lawyer, law office, corporation, governmental agency, or other entity. You carry out specifically delegated substantive legal work for which a lawyer is responsible. You cannot provide legal services directly to the public except as permitted by law.

This program is part of the Baker College Smart Degree Option.

Course Information
Paralegal Major61 Hours
Course NumberCourse TitleCredit Hours
ACC 121
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4 Quarter Hours

Introduces students to the concepts of financial accounting, including the completion of the accounting cycle, preparation of the financial statements, and detailed coverage of cash, receivables, inventory, fixed assets and liabilities.

Prerequisite(s):
MTH 091 or satisfies developmental math or placement exam.
Corequisite(s):
INF 113
Fundamentals of Accounting I4
MGT 141
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4 Quarter Hours

Provides an understanding of leadership styles, the management process, organizational resources and how to use them, various motivation/behavior theories, conflict management, and implementing and supporting change. Students will compare different leadership styles and apply them in case scenarios, role plays and other group/team activities involving topics such as: change, employee behavior, conflict, ethics, decision-making, and managing resources.

Prerequisite(s):
ENG 101
MGT 101.
Principles of Management4
PAR 101
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4 Quarter Hours

Provides a basic understanding of the procedural and practical aspects of being a paralegal. Emphasis is on legal terminology, legal concepts, skills needed to perform paralegal tasks, and the ethical considerations involved.

Law, Legal Profession, and Terminology4
PAR 111
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4 Quarter Hours

Provides students with a general understanding of the nature of legal research including book research and legal citation forms using specific techniques and methodologies. Students will develop research strategies that will enable them to begin drafting and analyzing a variety of legal documents. The mechanics of the construction of documents will be examined. Must complete this course with a C (73%) or better.

Prerequisite(s):
ENG 101 or acceptable English essay or placement exam.
Legal Writing, Research, and Analysis I4
PAR 112
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4 Quarter Hours

Consists of advanced legal drafting and writing. Students will continue to review and analyze case law and legal materials in the preparation of writing court briefs, pleadings, and memorandums. Unique problems of legal research will be explored. Students will be introduced to online legal research tools. Must complete this course with a C (73%) or better.

Prerequisite(s):
PAR 111
Legal Writing, Research, and Analysis II4
PAR 113A
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4 Quarter Hours

Provides a capstone experience for the legal research and writing series in the paralegal program. This course will reinforce and continue to develop the high level research skills necessary for today's paralegals. Manual and CALR methods will be expounded upon for further skill refinement, written and oral communications will continue to be a focus as students demonstrate their proficiency in this area through an extensive legal research project that requires them to produce the applicable legal documentation and then present their findings as they would in the legal setting. Must complete this course with a C (73%) or better.

Prerequisite(s):
PAR 112
Legal Writing, Research, and Analysis III4
PAR 131A
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4 Quarter Hours

Introduces basic legal software and computer technology utilized in an office. Topics include billing, time slips, electronic filing, calendaring and the ethical implications of each.

Prerequisite(s):
INF 112
Law Office Technology and Ethics4
PAR 201
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4 Quarter Hours

Introduces students to tort law, including intentional torts such as assault and battery; torts based on the failure to use reasonable care such as negligence; and strict liability torts, which make the actor liable without any fault for dangerous activities such as mining and blasting operations. In the introduction of negligence, students will become familiar with the four elements of all negligence lawsuits, duty, breach of duty, proximate causation, and damages. Major areas of tort litigation will be examined including products liability.

Prerequisite(s):
PAR 101.
Torts4
PAR 211
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4 Quarter Hours

Introduces students to the various offenses that constitute a crime as well as the general principles of culpability and justification. Constitutional safeguards and procedures necessary from arrest through the trial, sentencing, and punishment will be examined. The First, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, and Eighth Amendments will be examined.

Prerequisite(s):
PAR 101.
Criminal Law and Procedures4
PAR 221
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4 Quarter Hours

Covers the different forms of business organizations, including the advantages and disadvantages of doing business as a sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation or limited liability corporation. The rights, duties, and powers of partners will be explored and how a partnership can be terminated will be examined. Students will learn the basic characteristics of a corporate entity, the processes to form a corporation, the effects of improper incorporation, dissolution of a corporation, and the differences between stocks and bonds. The duties of corporate directors and officers, and the rights and liabilities of shareholders are explained. Students will become familiar with limited liability companies and how they operate.

Prerequisite(s):
PAR 101.
Business Organizations4
PAR 231A
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4 Quarter Hours

Familiarizes students with the basic elements of a will, types of wills as well as the responsibilities of a personal representative. Classes of trusts and rules governing trusts will be examined. Discussion will include the purposes of estate planning, probate forms and procedures, and guardianships. Students will assess and analyze tax ramifications of estate plans as well as the different classifications of property.

Prerequisite(s):
PAR 101.
Wills, Trust, and Probate Administration4
PAR 241
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4 Quarter Hours

Introduces students to the fundamental principles and practices associated with contract law. Topics include the elements of a binding legal contract, such as the offer, acceptance, and consideration, the distinction between the common law of contracts and the Uniform Commercial Code (UCC) treatment of contracts, the study of sales transactions and commercial contracts, an analysis of the concept of performance and the legal remedies available for breach of contract, and the preparation of valid contractual agreements.

Prerequisite(s):
PAR 101.
Contract Law4
PAR 291
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4 Quarter Hours

Introduces students to the stages of a lawsuit, including pretrial, trial, and post-trial procedures. Preparation of pleadings, motions, and subpoenas will be examined. This course will familiarize students with the fundamentals of discovery including interviewing techniques and case investigations. The Michigan Court Rules will also be examined. Must complete this course with a C (73%) or better.

Prerequisite(s):
PAR 113A, PAR 201
PAR 101
Civil Litigation4
POL 201A
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4 Quarter Hours

Studies the functions of government at the national, state, and local levels. Particular emphasis is placed on the effects of government policies on individuals and businesses. The areas of study include the Constitution, federalism, interest groups, courts, the bureaucracy, the economy, congress, the Presidency, and political parties.

American Political Systems4
WRK 215
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4 Quarter Hours

Requires students to perform 120 hours of paid/unpaid work experience in a legal setting. General paralegal duties will be performed.

Prerequisite(s):
ENG 102, PAR 113A, PAR 131A
PAR 101, minimum GPA 2.00, Sophomore status, Program Director/Dean approval.
Paralegal Work Experience4
WRK 291B
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1 Quarter Hours

Covers all phases of securing employment in a required seminar. Major topics include resume preparation, interview strategy, job application, job search action planning, personal appearance, and coordination of the graduate's employment search activity with the College Career Services Office. Students in degree programs may complete the seminar requirement any time during their final two quarters. Certificate students should attend in their last quarter.

Prerequisite(s):
Sophomore status.
Professional Career Strategies1
General Education Requirements32 Hours
Course NumberCourse TitleCredit Hours
ENG 101
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4 Quarter Hours

Emphasizes academic writing by reading and thinking critically to strengthen essential communication skills through the use of the writing process. Various assignments focus on summary and response, analysis, and informative writing. Research practices and research writing in APA style are essential to the course.

Prerequisite(s):
ENG 091 or satisfies developmental writing or placement exam, ENG 098B or satisfies developmental reading or placement exam.
Composition I4
ENG 102
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4 Quarter Hours

Continues developing students' critical thinking and writing skills through reading and argumentative writing. Emphasizes academic writing to articulate the relationships among language, knowledge, and power. Various assignments focus on position, argument analysis, and argumentative proposal. Research practices and research writing in APA style are essential to the course.

Prerequisite(s):
C or better in ENG 101 or placement exam and approved writing sample.
Composition II4
INF 112
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2 Quarter Hours

Introduces students to word processing software and applications. This will include demonstrating the ability to perform basic Windows operations commands and word processing commands, which include creating, saving, printing, formatting, editing, and retrieving documents.

Word Processing2
INF 113
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2 Quarter Hours

Introduces students to beginning electronic spreadsheet terminology, concepts, and applications. Students will gain the ability to enter/edit, save/retrieve files, format, and print spreadsheets and reports. Students are also introduced to basic formula development.

Electronic Spreadsheets2
INF 114A
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2 Quarter Hours

Introduces beginning database terminology, concepts, and applications using a file management software program. Students will demonstrate an understanding of data hierarchy; the ability to design simple files, edit file content, print file content, and simple reports; and the ability to search and sort files and use pre-existing formulas.

Introduction to Database Applications2
INF 161
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2 Quarter Hours

Explores timely social, legal, philosophical, ethical, political, constitutional, and economic implications of computing and technology. Coverage of the issues related to a technological society including social networking, privacy topics such as cameras in cell phones, access to our search queries and all sorts of data we put on the Web, social networking, location tracking, high-tech surveillance systems, intellectual property, professional ethics and responsibilities, and crime.

Technology and Society2
MTH 108
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4 Quarter Hours

Solves contemporary, real-world problems by mathematical reasoning utilizing concepts from algebra, finance, and statistics. Key topics include personal finance, mathematical models, functions and relations, dimensional analysis, statistical reasoning, and Euclidean geometry. This class focuses on quantitative literacy and the application of the above concepts in a variety of professional disciplines.

Prerequisite(s):
MTH 099E or satisfies developmental pre-algebra or placement exam.
College Mathematics I: Reasoning and Application4
SPK 201
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4 Quarter Hours

Develops confidence and skill in many facets of oral communication. Students explore diverse topics and formats, using both organization and research to support themselves during oral presentations.

Oral Communication4
Select 1 Course from the Following
Course NumberCourse TitleCredit Hours
ENG 221
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4 Quarter Hours

Studies literary analysis and provides practice of methods used to analyze the contents of literary works; includes a review of major themes and schools of literary criticism.

Prerequisite(s):
ENG 102
Critical Writing and Literary Analysis4
ENG 231
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4 Quarter Hours

Studies how and why people communicate the way they do. Habitual talking, listening, and writing behaviors of individuals and groups are examined as well as the influences of the history of the English language, home, community, and culture on the language structures and language uses of individuals. Culture, as it influences linguistic preference, is studied.

Prerequisite(s):
ENG 102
Language and Culture4
ENG 311
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4 Quarter Hours

Expands students' writing skills beyond the expository style studied in Composition I and II and in the Workplace Communication course. This course studies poetry forms and fiction writing techniques. It is not necessary that a student be an experienced creative writer, only that he or she be committed to the writing process.

Prerequisite(s):
ENG 102
Creative Writing4
LIT 331
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4 Quarter Hours

Surveys American literature of various genres from colonial times (1600) through the Civil War (1865). American literary movements and their historical contexts are revealed through works representing a full range of American ethnicities. Students learn to critically analyze many types of literature through class discussion, activities, and writing.

Prerequisite(s):
ENG 102
American Literature I4
LIT 332
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4 Quarter Hours

Surveys American literature of various genres from Reconstruction (1865) to the present. American literary movements and their historical contexts are revealed through works representing a full range of American ethnicities. Students learn to critically analyze many types of literature through class discussion, activities, and writing.

Prerequisite(s):
ENG 102
American Literature II4
Select 1 Course from the Following
Course NumberCourse TitleCredit Hours
PSY 101
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4 Quarter Hours

Provides a foundation for understanding human relations with applications to both personal and professional growth. Focus is on examining the basic dynamics of human relations, how social influences shape thought and behavior, effective ways to develop skills of human relations, and the importance of multicultural competency within human relations.

Human Relations4
PSY 111
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4 Quarter Hours

Provides a foundation of knowledge in psychology examining key topics related to understanding human thoughts and behavior. Topics include an exploration of factors that influence thoughts and behavior, psychology as a science, sensation/perception, motivation, emotion, memory, cognition, personality, as well as key figures, research, and theories within psychology. Applying concepts to real-life settings is a focus throughout the course.

General Psychology4

Quarter Hours Required for Graduation: 93

Program Description

This program is designed to offer education in paralegal studies. Core courses prepare students to assist attorneys by drafting legal documents, interacting with clients, and assisting in court. Students will conduct research and prepare memoranda to aid attorneys in resolving legal issues. Students will learn to assist attorneys with discovery, which includes responding to interrogatories, producing documents, and interviewing witnesses. Students may use their paralegal education in private law firms, corporations, nonprofit organizations, court systems, real estate title companies, banks, insurance companies, healthcare companies, local, state, and federal government agencies. A paralegal is 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. Paralegals may not provide legal services directly to the public except as permitted by law. This program has been approved by the American Bar Association at the Auburn Hills and Clinton Township campuses.

Accreditation

External peer review is the primary means of assuring and improving the quality of higher education institutions and programs in the United States. This recognition is accomplished through program accreditation, approval or certification.

The Paralegal Program has been approved by the American Bar Association at the Auburn Hills, Clinton Township, and Jackson campuses.

Accredited by The Higher Learning Commission / 230 South LaSalle St., Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL 60604-1411 / 800-621-7440 / www.ncahlc.org

Baker College is an Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) participant.

Student Learning Outcomes
  • Upon graduation, the graduate of the Associate of Business degree in Paralegal should obtain employment appropriate for this degree in a legal or business environment.
  • Ability to conduct legal and factual investigation using traditional and technological methodologies.
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the court system and the process a case takes from inception through post-trial.
  • Apply legal reasoning by identifying legal issues, finding and interpreting the legal rule, applying the rule to factual situations, and drawing conclusions.
  • Practice organizational and life skills that enhance the paralegal’s ability to succeed in the legal or business environment.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the evolving role of paralegals in the delivery of legal services and the need to continue educational experiences through networking with professional organizations and pursuing continuing education.
  • Model ethical and professional responsibilities applicable to paralegals.
  • Demonstrate the ability to effectively communicate ideas in both written and oral forms.
  • Distinguish among the various cultures and ethnic groups of the world as well as identify the common bonds all humans share.
  • Comprehend, communicate, and interpret numeric and graphical information and data.
  • Explore, analyze, and explain major patterns of human behavior within the personal and social environment.
  • Apply basic computer skills to the management of information.

Program Finder

Start today and discover the program that is right for you.

Upcoming Events

FAQ's

  • How can I send a copy of my official transcripts to another organization?

    To access your transcripts, log into the SOLAR System, select the Star System and select the Academic Office. Once there, click on the transcripts link.

  • Is Baker accredited?

    Yes. Baker College is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission / 230 South LaSalle St., Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL 60604-1411 / 800-621-7440 / www.ncahlc.org.

    Baker College is an Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) participant.

    Additional Accreditations

    Baker has also earned specialized accreditations for programs and degrees in: 

    • Business Administration
    • Early Childhood Learning
    • Engineering and Technology
    • Health Sciences
    • School of Nursing

    For details about these specialized accreditations, see the individual Programs and Degrees pages. 

  • Does Baker provide any help in my job search?


    As a graduate of Baker College, you are eligible for our Lifetime Employment Services, which include:

    • Job searching techniques
    • Resume and cover letter assistance
    • Job interview questions
    • Job postings
    • Relocation tips

     

  • Is Baker College Online accredited?

    Baker Online is part of Baker College, a private, non-profit, accredited, degree granting, higher educational institution with locations throughout Michigan.

    As an accredited college, Baker College has been granted legal authority by the state of Michigan to operate as a nonprofit educational corporation and is empowered to grant certificates, associate, bachelor, master, and doctoral degrees. It is approved for veterans’ benefits. Baker College is recognized as an institution of higher education by the U.S. Secretary of Education, U.S. Department of Education.

    All Baker Online undergraduate and graduate programs are accredited by The Higher Learning Commission / 230 South LaSalle St., Suite 7-500, Chicago, IL 60604-1411 / 800-621-7440 / www.ncahlc.org

    Baker College is an Academic Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) participant.

    Some Baker Online graduate programs have additional accreditation:

  • How do online classes work?


    After you enroll, and are accepted to your online program, you sign-up, or "register" for your first courses. Like all Baker Online students, you will begin your online experience with a three-week online class designed to orient you to the Baker Online classroom, and review the expectations and requirements of Baker Online students. When you have completed this course successfully, you can move on to additional online courses.

  • Load More FAQ'S
Testimonial Image - Carla Spalding
Testimonial quote

There’s a place for an accountant in every business—in every industry...

Carla Spalding
Baker Accounting Program