2013-2014 Samford University Catalog 
    Feb 01, 2023  
2013-2014 Samford University Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Paralegal Studies Certificate Program (Non-Degree)

Samford University’s Paralegal Studies Certificate Program is approved by the American Bar Association. Students who currently have an associate of science or bachelor’s degree may take the ten legal specialty courses described below and earn the Paralegal Certificate. In addition, all legal specialty courses are offered for academic credit and may apply towards a degree. Students who do not currently have an associate or bachelor’s degree should refer to the paralegal studies major (B.A.) table. All instructors in the Paralegal Studies Certificate Program are licensed attorneys or paralegals.

The program is committed to producing well educated, capable, and ethically aware graduates who, although they may not provide legal services directly to the public except as permitted by law, are prepared for careers as paralegals to attorneys in private, public, and corporate settings. Paralegals are professionals trained both in the substance of the law and in legal procedure who use that knowledge and those skills to provide a broad range of legal services under the supervision and direction of an attorney. Specifically, the program goals are:

  1. To train students in a practical way for careers as paralegals to attorneys.
  2. To promote a basic understanding of legal concepts and terms on subjects that are important to those engaged in general practice or in specialized areas of law and to equip students with legal writing and research skills that will enable graduates to perform as skilled members of a legal team.
  3. To provide a general understanding of the principles of ethical and professional responsibility as these relate to lawyers and paralegals.
  4. To provide a broad background in general education for development of educated, socially, morally, and ethically aware individuals.
  5. To constantly upgrade and adjust the program to fulfill the needs of the community by seeking input from local attorneys, paralegals, and students.

Transfer Policy

A total of three courses may transfer into the Paralegal Studies Certificate Program, provided that all of the following are met:

  1. Each course was completed in the last seven years.
  2. Each course was completed at an American Bar Association-approved program.
  3. Each course was completed at an institution accredited by a regional accrediting agency.
  4. Each course is equivalent in content and credit hours as one currently offered through the Paralegal Studies Certificate Program, as determined by the program’s director.
  5. The student provides a syllabus and a program/university catalog for each course under consideration.
  6. The final determination concerning transferability is approved by the program’s director.