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Paralegal Schools in Ohio

    This guide to paralegal schools in Ohio will equip you with key information so that you can make an informed decision on where to pursue a paralegal degree or certificate. The wide range of paralegal programs in Ohio provides many options to fit your interests and desired career track, from general paralegal programs to specialty programs emphasizing practice areas like litigation or transactional practice. Online paralegal programs can also be a flexible and suitable alternative for some students. Our guide to paralegal careers in Ohio can offer additional information about potential opportunities with a degree or certificate in legal studies.

    Quick Facts

    • There are 21 colleges and universities that offer paralegal/legal assistant degree programs in Ohio.1
    • 17 schools offer a certificate program for paralegals/legal assistants.1
    • 13 schools offer an associate’s degree program for paralegals/legal assistants.1
    • 7 schools offer a bachelor’s degree program for paralegals/legal assistants.1
    • 1 school offers a master’s degree for paralegals/legal assistants.1
    • No schools ranked in Paralegal411’s Top Online Paralegal Programs.2
    • 3 schools ranked in US News & World Report’s Best Law Schools in 2022.3
    • 3 schools ranked in US News & World Report’s Best Legal Writing Programs in 2022.4
    • 13 ABA-approved paralegal degree programs are in Ohio.5

    For not-for-profit colleges and universities with paralegal/legal assistant degree programs.

    Table of Contents
    Comparison of Paralegal Programs
    Top-Ranked Schools with Paralegal Programs in Ohio
    Select Schools in Ohio with Paralegal Degrees
    Student Reviews


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    Comparison of Paralegal Programs

    The table below will help you compare not-for-profit paralegal and legal studies programs in Ohio based on various factors. The table includes paralegal program-specific information such as the programs offered and whether there are any online options. It also includes general school information to help you compare the colleges and universities that host these programs, including overall acceptance rate, graduation rate for first-time bachelor’s degree seekers, median debt for graduates, and net tuition per year for full-time undergraduate study. We have also included information on approval by the American Bar Association (ABA). While ABA approval is not required in order to work as a paralegal, it is a mark of program quality that is preferred by many employers.

    SchoolABA Approved?Paralegal Degree(s)Acceptance Rate6Grad Rate1Online Options?Median Debt7Net Price1
    Belmont College (St. Clairsville)Certificate-Legal Office Specialist100%31%$5,274$6,194
    Capital University (Bexley)YesCertificate-Paralegal;
    Master of Legal Studies
    72%62%$20,091$21,946
    Cincinnati State Technical and Community College (Cincinnati)Certificate-Paralegal;
    AAB-Paralegal;
    AAB-Administrative Assistant
    100%17%$6,333$4,585
    Clark State Community College (Springfield)AAS-Paralegal100%15%$7,070$6,414
    Columbus State Community College (Columbus)YesCertificate-Paralegal Studies;
    AAS-Paralegal Studies
    100%27%$6,500$6,027
    Cuyahoga Community College District (Cleveland)YesAAB-Paralegal Studies100%21%Yes$4,000$4,722
    Eastern Gateway Community College (Steubenville)Certificate-Paralegal;
    AAB-Paralegal
    100%19%Yes$4,673$3,528
    Edison State Community College (Piqua)Certificate-Paralegal Studies;
    AAB-Paralegal Studies
    100%37%Yes$8,484$8,197
    Kent State University at Kent (Kent)YesCertificate-Paralegal Studies;
    BA-Paralegal Studies;
    Minor-Paralegal Studies
    86%62%$17,125$18,643
    Kent State University at Trumbull (Warren)YesCertificate-Paralegal Studies;
    BA-Paralegal Studies;
    Minor-Paralegal Studies
    100%16%$17,125$7,596
    Lake Erie College (Painesville)BA-Legal Studies57%47%$16,819$20,254
    Lakeland Community College (Kirtland)YesCertificate-Paralegal Studies;
    AAB-Paralegal Studies
    100%13%Yes$6,334$7,379
    Northwest State Community College (Archbold)AA-Pre-Paralegal Pathway100%30%$5,216$8,456
    Rhodes State College (Lima)YesCertificate-Paralegal/Legal Assisting
    AS-Paralegal/Legal Assisting
    100%26%$7,546$7,450
    Sinclair Community College (Dayton)YesCertificate-Legal Studies;
    AAS-Legal Studies
    100%21%$5,425$4,431
    Stark State College (North Canton)Certificate-Legal Assisting100%21%Yes$8,500$6,639
    University of Cincinnati-Clermont College (Batavia)YesCertificate- Law and Paralegal Studies;
    AAB-Law and Paralegal Studies;
    BS-Law and Paralegal Studies;
    100%20%Yes$14,000$9,412
    University of Cincinnati-Main Campus (Cincinnati)YesCertificate- Law and Paralegal Studies;
    AAB-Law and Paralegal Studies;
    BS-Law and Paralegal Studies
    77%71%Yes$14,000$19,219
    University of Northwestern Ohio (Lima)AAB-Legal Assisting100%60%Yes$14,667$17,399
    University of Toledo (Toledo)YesCertificate-Legal Studies;
    AAS-Paralegal Studies;
    BS-Paralegal Studies;
    Minor-Legal Specialties
    96%50%$13,000$17,822
    Ursuline College (Pepper Pike)YesCertificate-Legal Studies;
    BA-Legal Studies;
    Minor-Legal Studies
    85%53%$22,750$17,562

    • — indicates none.
    • N.Av. indicates no data available.

    Top-Ranked Schools with Paralegal Programs in Ohio

    US News & World Report’s Best Law Schools 2022

    • University of Cincinnati (#81 tie)
    • University of Toledo (#129 tie)
    • Capital University (#124-193)

    US News & World Report’s Best Legal Writing Programs 2022

    • University of Cincinnati (#149 tie)
    • University of Toledo (#154 tie)
    • Capital University (#166 tie)

    Select Schools in Ohio with Paralegal Degrees

    Traditional Programs

    Kent State University

    Kent State University offers an ABA-approved Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree in Paralegal Studies that combines a liberal arts foundation with specialized courses in law and legal studies. These specialty courses supplement the general education requirements and aim to equip students with a comprehensive, procedural knowledge of the legal system as well as foster vital critical thinking, analytical, and communication skills. Students can choose to commit to general study of the paralegal field or they may choose to focus on either Litigation or Transactional Practice. The program culminates in a mandatory internship during which students develop their ability to practically apply classroom knowledge to legal tasks and begin critical networking within the field. Kent State University also offers a Minor in Paralegal Studies and a Post-Baccalaureate Undergraduate Certificate in Paralegal Studies.

    University of Toledo

    The University of Toledo offers several ABA-approved paralegal degree programs including a four-year Bachelor of Science (BS) degree, an Associate of Applied Science (AAS), and a Post-Baccalaureate Certificate. The McQuade Courtroom, an in-house teaching courtroom, holds law courses across a variety of specialties, including Contracts, Mock Trial, and a trial practice class, all of which are taught by lawyers and judges who are experts in their respective fields. The breadth of available courses offers students opportunities to specialize in many areas and the flexible course timetable aims to accommodate a variety of schedules. Students gain the knowledge and skills to learn how to effectively communicate within the field. Students also complete a 180-hour internship to learn real-world skills and advance their careers. The University also offers an ABA-approved Nurse Paralegal Certificate in Paralegal Studies, a Legal Specialties Minor, and a Pre-Law Track.

    Network, network, network! Sometimes it’s not ‘what’ you know but ‘who’ you know so it’s beyond important to get involved in your local, state and national paralegal organizations.” –Rebecca Lewis, MBA, MPA, Vice President of the Paralegal Association of Central Ohio and Paralegal Supervisor at the Office of the Chief Legal and Governance Office, Nationwide.

    Hybrid and Online Programs

    Lakeland Community College

    Lakeland Community College offers paralegal studies programs that lead to an Associate of Applied Business (AAB) in Paralegal Studies degree or a Paralegal Studies Certificate. Both programs are approved by the ABA, and graduates are eligible for the Ohio State Bar Association Paralegal Certification. Courses are offered on campus in a flexible format and some are offered online. Students learn legal concepts in foundational courses before choosing from electives such as Real Estate Law and Practice; Litigation Management; and Family Law. Coursework covers legal research and writing, ethics of law, and technology commonly used in the field. Students in both programs also complete a 100-hour paralegal internship. After completing the associate degree or certificate program, graduates can choose to pursue further education or find entry-level positions in law offices, government agencies, or legal departments.

    University of Cincinnati

    The University of Cincinnati offers multiple online programs designed to enable students to succeed in paralegal positions in law firms and other professional legal environments: An Associate of Applied Business (AAB) in Law and Paralegal Studies; a Bachelor of Science (BS) in Law and Paralegal Studies; a Post-Associate Certificate in Law and Paralegal Studies; and a Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Law and Paralegal Studies. All programs are American Bar Association (ABA) approved. The programs help students build strong communication skills, apply critical thinking, and strengthen their ability to analyze information. An experienced faculty of practicing lawyers and paralegals lead courses such as Civil Litigation; Law Office Technology; and Legal Research and Writing. Students may complete the degree or certificate requirements full- or part-time; the only requirement is that students take at least one credit hour per semester to remain continuously enrolled.

    University of Northwestern Ohio

    Students can complete an Associate of Applied Business (AAB) in Legal Assisting degree through the University of Northwestern Ohio. This 108-credit hour program can be completed entirely online. The curriculum includes 32 credit hours of general education classes in the liberal arts as well as 73 credit hours in legal subjects including courses like Litigation; Criminal Law; Juvenile Law; and Legal Research and Writing. Classes emphasize core legal concepts but also skills in critical thinking, communication, and interpersonal skills. The coursework also has a strong focus on legal research and writing methods as well as other real-world legal tools. Courses are led by faculty who are also licensed attorneys with real-world experience, helping students integrate classroom knowledge with on-the-ground practice. Graduates from the Legal Assisting program may go on to work as paralegals or legal assistants or use their associate degree as the foundation for continued education.

    Student Reviews

    Note: Student Reviews are based on the experiences of a few individuals and it is unlikely that you will have similar results. Please review the “Data, Student Reviews and Other Information” section in our Terms of Use and Disclaimers.

    Cuyahoga Community College
    2900 Community College Ave
    Cleveland, OH 44115
    (800) 954-8742
    https://www.tri-c.edu/

    Student Review: “Taking Cuyahoga County Community College’s post-degree Paralegal Certification program was the best thing I’ve ever done. I’d worked in a law firm for eight years before I enrolled, and I learned more during at Cuyahoga Community College than I did on the job. We learned how to do everything from simple secretarial work to detailed legal research. I learned about civil procedure, government, administrative agencies, and business. During the program, we created a portfolio filled with sample work, which I will use as I grow in my career. After receiving my certificate, I went on to better, more rewarding work in the law firm and I plan to one day work in government.” -Student at Cuyahoga Community College
    stars-4

    Student Review: “My paralegal program was overseen by the American Bar Association and as a result, I got a varied and practical, hands-on education. I was already working in the field and wanted to advance my career. I found that the things I learned in my program were IMMEDIATELY relevant to my job. I developed a greater understanding of the legal field as a whole. I learned things such as hands-on research, motion and brief writing, and why we file in the courts that we do. I learned to identify the elements of torts, and how to fill out and review a bankruptcy petition. The only thing I did not like about my program was the bureaucratic workings of the school itself. I was told at the onset that I could take most of my classes online or at a local campus, which turned out to be false. Most of the classes I needed were only at one campus, 40 minutes from home and a rush to get to after work. Additionally, some of the core classes were only offered at one or two times each semester, which meant that trying to figure out WHEN I would be able to take the class I needed to graduate while holding down a full-time career was difficult. Because of this, it took me an extra year to finish my program as I could only take a class or two each semester.” -Student at Cuyahoga Community College
    stars-5

    Student Review: “Cuyahoga Community College’s Paralegal program really prepared me for my job as a paralegal in a consumer rights law firm. Their program was overseen by the American Bar Association and because of this, I was exposed to a wide variety of practices, which I am able to apply every day. I learned practical skills such as legal research and civil procedure, and softer skill such as dealing with attorney personality types. The most useful part of the program was learning how to organize my thinking. Prior to taking the program the concept of applying the law to something seemed confusing. The program taught me how to look at things objectively and order my thinking to apply the rules of civil procedure and also systematic research, to better my ability to sum up a new matter before bringing it to my attorney and also to write letters and briefs. I think this program was valuable as a real-world tool, and not just as an area of academic study. It was also highly affordable, and worth every penny when compared to the salary I’m currently making in my career.” -Student at Cuyahoga Community College
    stars-5

    Kent State University
    800 E Summit St
    Kent, OH 44240
    (330) 672-3000
    https://www.utoledo.edu

    Student Review: “The Kent State Paralegal Studies program was wonderful. The professors were all experienced attorneys, and they provided us with a practical education that covered all of the basics that I needed to start work. They gave great advice for me as a student and as a future paralegal, and I am still in touch with several of them as I continue my career. The thoroughness of the program gave me a wide range of legal knowledge, and this has been commented on in every interview I’ve had, and I know that it was a major factor in me receiving the job offer that I decided to accept. The online classes are the weakest aspect of the program. They are good for learning the material, but do not allow a student to build any kind of relationship with their professors.” -Student at Kent State University
    stars-5

    Lakeland Community College
    7700 Clocktower Dr
    Kirtland, OH 44094
    (440) 525-7000
    http://www.lakelandcc.edu/

    Student Review: “The paralegal studies program at Lakeland Community College provided real-world experience to students. All the core courses were taught by practicing attorneys and judges who imparted upon us practical knowledge as well as comprehensive coverage of the underlying legal theory and history behind each field of law. The coursework and projects in each class involved preparing real pleadings, legal forms, and other documentation on the current forms in use in Lake County and local municipalities. I was a legal secretary at the time I was attending Lakeland for paralegal studies, and the coursework was directly relevant to my work at the law firm. While I did have difficulty in finding an internship, I can’t attribute that to Lakeland directly; local law firms in my area weren’t eager to take on interns (which is understandable); as such, the only lacking part of Lakeland’s program is internship placement and post-graduation job placement. The quality of instruction is top notch and the instructors care about the success of their students. The flexibility of class scheduling is beneficial to non-traditional students (evenings, weekends, accelerated coursework, online courses). I can’t recommend Lakeland’s paralegal program enough, it really trains students to jump right into the workforce.” -Student at Lakeland Community College
    stars-5

    University of Cincinnati
    2600 Clifton Ave
    Cincinnati, OH 45220
    (513) 556-6000
    https://www.uc.edu/

    Student Review: “The University of Cincinnati’s paralegal program is pretty nice so far (I am only a freshman right now). The curriculum isn’t too hard as long as you’re paying attention but I feel it’s still challenging enough to keep me interested and engaged. The professors are really nice and always welcome you to their weekly office hours if you are in need of help. My advisers really helped me to figure out what classes I need to take to stay on track to graduate as well as giving me advice for getting in contact with potential employers in the future. However, I do wish the classes were more personal. I guess I am a freshman so a lot of my lectures are in big classes with lots of people and even though the professors are welcoming during office hours, there’s not a lot of face time in class.” -Student at University of Cincinnati
    stars-4

    Student Review: “University of Cincinnati’s Paralegal Program is ranked within the Top Ten nationally for a reason. The emphasis upon cooperative education and particularly in this case, an internship that happened to be with the largest law firm in the United States was an immense opportunity. I can only say glowing things about the program and my experience. Professors are accessible and supportive. Furthermore, all learning is sequential, reasoned, and principled. Put another way, what I learned never felt haphazard or random or without purpose. There is a strong emphasis on academic and legal writing and you need to hit the ground running. That emphasis upon rigorous writing assignments really translated into success for me. I have a job as a paralegal and if the teleological purpose of a paralegal program and its existence is to prepare individuals for careers as paralegals, then the University of Cincinnati succeeds. My only complaints are that parking is horrendous and it’s not in a good part of town. Overall, I am deeply satisfied and I feel that I invested my time and money wisely.” -Student at University of Cincinnati
    stars-5

    University of Toledo
    2801 W Bancroft St
    Toledo, OH 43606
    (800) 586-5336
    https://www.utoledo.edu

    Student Review: “The University of Toledo paralegal studies program was a good experience for me. One key aspect that I liked most was the instructors. Most of the faculty had spent decades practicing law or were currently doing so. This made the course content very relevant and engaging. They were very accessible although they were practicing professionals and provided personal attention outside of the classroom. I was able to secure an internship at a firm through a contact that my instructor set me up with. In the classroom, we had assignments that prepared me well for my internship and the real world!” -Student at University of Toledo
    stars-4

    References:
    1. National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
    2. Paralegal411’s Top Online Paralegal Programs: https://www.paralegal411.org/degrees/bachelors/online/
    3. US News & World Report Best Law Schools 2022: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-law-schools/law-rankings
    4. US News & World Report Best Legal Writing Programs 2022: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-law-schools/legal-writing-rankings
    5. American Bar Association Approved Paralegal Programs: https://www.americanbar.org/groups/paralegals/
    6. Niche: https://www.niche.com/
    7. Georgetown University Center on Education and the Workforce, Ranking ROI of 4,500 US Colleges and Universities: https://cew.georgetown.edu/cew-reports/CollegeROI/