About the program

The Paralegal Studies program at Northern Virginia Community College (NOVA) is approved by the American Bar Association (ABA). After completing the program, students earn an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree. The courses for this program can be found here: http://www.nvcc.edu/catalog/cat2018/academics/programs/advisingsheet.aspx?prog_id=3600&subprog_id=0.

Information about enrollment and admissions can be found here: http://www.nvcc.edu/admissions/index.html.  And, information about tuition can be found here: http://www.nvcc.edu/tuition/index.html.   As part of the enrollment and admissions process, students must furnish copies of their official transcripts to the Student Services department. At that time, a Counselor will explain which of the courses taken at a previous college or university will transfer.

Generally those individuals with a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution will have all general education requirements satisfied, which means they only need to take the legal specialty courses. Each semester, some courses are offered online, some are offered in a traditional classroom setting, and others are offered in a hybrid format. Courses that are taught in the hybrid format include both classroom meetings and significant online work.

To be eligible to receive the AAS degree in Paralegal Studies, students must complete 25 percent (17 credits) of their coursework at NOVA. In addition, ABA guidelines regulate the number of courses accepted through transfer–at least 50 percent of the legal specialty courses (LGL) must be completed at NOVA and 10 of those credits must be taken in the traditional classroom setting.

Students must complete College Composition I (ENG 111) and Introduction to Law and the Paralegal (LGL 110) in the first semester. Of course, they may take additional courses during the same semester.

It is important for students to follow the sequencing plan when taking legal specialty courses, which means that 100-level courses must be taken before 200-level courses. In addition, Legal Research is a prerequisite for Legal Writing; therefore, these courses may not be taken during the same semester. Students should meet with a program advisor at least once per semester.

The spring 2019 semester begins on January 12. Students who register online must do so before 11:59 p.m. on the day before the session begins.

Paralegals are prohibited by law from offering legal services directly to members of the public.