Legal Studies

    • The legal studies/paralegal program prepares students fora career in various capacities to perform specifically delegated and substantive legal work for which a lawyer is responsible.
    • Skill sets acquired by student paralegals include interviewing, investigation, legal research and preparation of legal documents.

    You Will Learn

    The legal studies/paralegal program is approved by the American Bar Association (ABA) and has just been recommended for re-approval for a seven-year period. This program offers training, internship opportunities and job placement for students and graduates. In addition to the liberal core that offers critical thinking and analytical skills, students receive education courses that enhance the professional skills necessary to legal professionals. The program curriculum includes a strong basis of legal specialty courses that provide practical skills training. These skills are sought after by many employers. Paralegals are well prepared to attend law school as well as work in a wide variety of legal settings, law and related jobs.

    You Will Experience

    An internship is required of legal studies/paralegal students. The location of the University, in the heart of the Erie legal community, makes it possible for students to experience internship opportunities in a wide variety of settings. Students experience the work of a paralegal or attorney in settings that include:

    • banks
    • corporations
    • courts
    • insurance companies
    • law firms
    • real estate offices

    You Will Achieve

    Such opportunities include, but are not limited to, the following:  

    • banks
    • district attorney
    • hospital administration
    • insurance companies
    • judge's tipstaff
    • private investigator offices • public defender
    • real estate sales/property management
    • law firms

    You will Study

    Students can choose from three programs within the legal studies/paralegal program, which include a bachelor's degree program, an associate degree program or a certificate program. Legal studies/paralegal majors take various core and elective courses including:

    LEGL 212: Legal Research and Writing II

    This course includes advanced work in legal research
    and legal writing. It introduces students to legal analysis focusing on practical assignments, which examine in detail the components of court opinions. The course emphasizes case analysis, and the preparation of both informal and formal legal memorandums.

    LEGL 334: Public Records Research and Title Abstracts

    This course studies the theory and practice of completing courthouse civil and criminal records, research and real estate title abstracts.

    LEGL 343: Computers in the Law

    This course is designed to introduce legal assistants and other legal professionals to the use of computers in the legal field, preparing them to use computer skills in the legal environment.

    Liberal Studies Core

    The Liberal Studies Core Curriculum is one reflection of Gannon University's commitment to its Catholic identity. The Core's design offers students a defined, integrated, shared experience as the foundation for their undergraduate program.

    You Will Earn

    Salaries in the industry vary depending on the location and type of organization.

    • Starting salary: $35,000
    • Mid-career salary: $53,000

    For a current curriculum listing, visit gannon.edu/academic-offerings
    All salary information is compiled from data gathered from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (bls.gov) and/or PayScale (payscale.com).