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Paralegal Studies

Focusing on the value of your degree.

National American University offers degree programs in both the Associate of Applied Science and the Bachelor of Science in Paralegal Studies. The Paralegal Studies degree provides students with the technical knowledge of a law office applications and the substantive legal knowledge to be a critical part of a legal team.

What is a paralegal?

A paralegal is defined by the American Bar Association (ABA) as “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.”


Paralegals, sometimes called legal assistants, may be employed in law firms; corporate legal departments; local, state, and federal government offices; bank and trust departments; and other offices that require a specialized understanding of the law and the legal system. Paralegals may also be employed in other careers that require excellent analytical and communication skills.


Under the supervision of an attorney, a paralegal may interview clients and witnesses; draft court pleadings and other legal documents; perform legal research; review medical, police and other records; attend hearings; assist in trial preparations; and assist at trial.

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Associated Careers

*Source: National Center for O*NET Development. O*NET OnLine.

  • Paralegals and Legal Assistants
  • Title Examiners, Abstractors, and Searchers
  • Legal Support Workers, All Other

A paralegal may not give legal advice, represent a client in court, or set fees. A paralegal is not an attorney. Some jurisdictions regulate the admission of individuals into the paralegal profession. A person convicted of a felony may not be able to serve as a paralegal in certain states. Please consult with your state’s judicial offices to determine the regulation of paralegals in your state.


“I have been teaching at National American University for the last 7 years. I am very impressed with the school’s dedication to its paralegal students and the quality of faculty on staff at the college…It is especially rewarding seeing our Paralegal students succeed in the workplace upon graduating. I am very honored to be a part of NAU.” Richard W. Hechter, J.D., MBA (Assistant professor/instructor in the paralegal program).

The program offered at Rapid City is approved by the American Bar Association (ABA).

*Program offerings vary by location. Contact your local campus for more information!