Paralegal Schools in West Virginia
This overview of paralegal schools in West Virginia contains key information about the paralegal certificate and degree programs available in the state. The colleges and universities in West Virginia offer a variety of paralegal programs from general paralegal studies to specialty topics like e-discovery and corporate law which may be a good fit for your career aspirations. You may also find that online paralegal programs are a good fit since they often offer more flexible class schedules.
- There are 9 colleges and universities that offer paralegal/legal assistant degree programs in West Virginia.1
- 4 schools offer a certificate program for paralegals/legal assistants.1
- 7 schools offer an associate’s degree program for paralegals/legal assistants.1
- 1 school offers a bachelor’s degree program for paralegals/legal assistants.1
- 1 school offers a master’s or advanced degree for paralegals/legal assistants.1
- No schools ranked in Kiplinger’s Best Values in Public Colleges in 2018.2
- No schools ranked in Paralegal411’s Top Online Paralegal Programs in 2018.3
- No schools ranked in College Factual’s Best Colleges Offering Degrees in Legal Professions in 2018.4
- 1 school ranked in US News Best Law Schools in 2019.5
- 1 not-for-profit ABA-approved paralegal degree program is in West Virginia.6
Top-Ranked Schools with Paralegal Programs
US News Best Law Schools 2019
- West Virginia University (#106 tie)
Schools with Paralegal Programs Approved by the ABA
- Mountwest Community & Technical College
Paralegal Degree Programs in West Virginia
Mountwest Community & Technical College
The paralegal degree program at Mountwest Community & Technical College was planned with assistance and advisement from the West Virginia State Bar and a committee of experienced paralegals and legal assistants. The Associate of Science (AS) in Paralegal Studies focuses on the practical application of useful professional skills as well as substantive knowledge of basic legal fields. Interpersonal communication and analytical abilities are emphasized throughout the course sequence. The program culminates in a mandatory paralegal internship facilitated by the career services division of the program. This experience allows paralegals to gain valuable work experience and develop important contacts within the legal workplace prior to graduation. As of 2019, this is the only paralegal degree program in West Virginia that has been approved by the American Bar Association (ABA).
West Virginia Northern Community College
West Virginia Northern Community College offers both a certificate program in paralegal studies and a Business Studies Associate of Applied Science (AAS) with a focus in paralegal studies. The program goals include knowledge of legal terminology and procedure, demonstration of critical thinking skills, legal research and presentation competency, and an understanding of the ethical implications within the paralegal profession. The paralegal program is only offered full-time at the Wheeling campus, though some courses are also offered at the Weirton campus. The certificate program may be completed in as little as 12 months for full-time students and the academic credit is fully transferable to the AAS program. This program provides a comprehensive introduction to substantive legal topics and paralegal professional skills.
Blue Ridge Technical and Community College
Blue Ridge Technical and Community College offers an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) in Paralegal Studies and a Legal Office Assistant Certificate. The hands-on, practical approach to paralegal studies at Blue Ridge Technical and Community College prepares students for dynamic careers as paralegals and legal assistants in law offices, corporations, and government agencies. In addition to substantive legal issues, the curriculum focuses on skills development such as legal research and writing, government operations, document drafting, trial preparation, technical processing skills, and client interviewing. In addition to providing career preparation, completion of the AAS program prepares students to pursue national certification as a paralegal or to continue paralegal education at a four-year institution. Both the certificate and the AAS are affordable options for individuals wishing to begin a paralegal career.
Online Paralegal Programs
West Virginia University
West Virginia University Online offers a Master of Legal Studies (MLS) degree program that teaches students about the US legal system. The program is designed for working professionals in both private and public organizations who need to apply an understanding of the law to their jobs. Students can choose from three different areas of emphasis: healthcare, justice systems, or homeland security, making this program applicable to professionals in industries like criminal justice, social work, court administration, national security, regulatory agencies, and human relations. Students complete 21 required credits in foundational classes such as Law and the Legal System, Researching the Law, Dispute Resolution Process, and Administrative Ethics before completing nine elective credits. All courses are available online, and the curriculum can be finished in 18 months. Applicants must have a bachelor’s degree to be considered for the program.
1. National Center for Education Statistics College Navigator: https://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/
2. Kiplinger’s Best College Values in Public Colleges: https://www.kiplinger.com/tool/college/T014-S001-kiplinger-s-best-values-in-public-colleges/index.php
3. Paralegal411’s Top Online Paralegal Programs: https://www.paralegal411.org/degrees/bachelors/online/
4. College Factual’s Best Colleges Offering Degrees in Legal Professions in 2018: https://www.collegefactual.com/majors/legal-studies-and-professions/rankings/top-ranked/
5. US News Best Law Schools 2019: https://www.usnews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-law-schools/law-rankings
6. American Bar Association Approved Paralegal Programs: https://www.americanbar.org/groups/paralegals/