Academic Certificate in Legal Secretary

Division of Social Sciences — Curriculum Code: 3209

Will Earn Upon Program Completion: Academic Certificate
Why major in Legal Secretary?

This academic certificate program prepares students for employment opportunities as legal secretaries in law firms, corporate legal departments, government agencies, banks, legal aid societies, and federal and state courts. The program teaches students basic legal principles, legal terminology, and business writing and provides a broad background in legal office management. Students also develop skills in clerical, technical, and administrative areas.

If I major in Legal Secretary, can I transfer to an upper-division college or university?

The Legal Secretary certificate program is career-oriented. Courses completed as part of this academic certificate program can be applied toward associate’s degree programs at ECC. Most or all credits earned in certificate programs that are applied to associate’s degree programs transfer to four-year institutions. See a Social Sciences Division academic advisor (faculty member) for more information.

Are there any requirements I must satisfy before I start taking courses?

Based on your placement test scores, you may have to take developmental courses in reading, English, and/or mathematics before taking the core curriculum courses in your major.

How long will it take for me to complete this program?

If you do not need developmental coursework and you register for an average of 11 credits each semester, you may complete the academic certificate of completion in three semesters.

Where should I direct specific questions about this program?

Call the Division at (973) 877-3250.

Upon completion of this program, graduates will be able to:
  • Explain the role of a paralegal and a legal secretary in today’s legal system and in a legal organization;
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the American legal system and the fundamentals of the litigation process;
  • Demonstrate knowledge of the principles of legal ethics and of the Model Code of Ethics and Professional Responsibility and Guidelines for Enforcement of the National Federation of Paralegal Associations, Inc.;
  • Demonstrate competent, proficient and professional performance of a variety of administrative and clerical responsibilities, including client contact, that are necessary to function successfully in a legal organization;
  • Demonstrate problem-solving and critical, analytical thinking skills; and
  • Communicate effectively with accurate legal terminology in written and/or oral form with a demonstrated proficiency in the use of technology.

GENERAL EDUCATION REQUIREMENTS (6 credits)

Written & Oral Communications (3 credits)
ENG 101 (3 credits)

Technological Competency (3 credits)
CIS 131 (3 credits)

MAJOR COURSE REQUIREMENTS (33 credits)

CIS 152 Internet Concepts (3 credits)
OCT 106 Keyboarding and Formatting I (3 credits)
OCT 107 Document Publication and Design (3 credits)
OCT 121 Business Communications (3 credits)
OCT 215 Specialized Machine Transcription (3 credits)
OCT 230 Legal Office Procedures (3 credits)
OCT 250 Word/Information Processing Applications I (3 credits)
OCT 251 Word/Information Processing Applications II (3 credits)
PLS 101 Introduction to Paralegal Studies (3 credits)

RECOMMENDED SEQUENCE OF COURSES

Total Credits Required for Academic Certificate: 33

First Semester
CIS 131 Microcomputers in Business (3 credits)
ENG 101 College Composition I (3 credits)
OCT 106 Keyboarding and Formatting I (3 credits)
PLS 101 Introduction to Paralegal Studies (3 credits)

Second Semester
CIS 152 Internet Concepts (3 credits)
OCT 107 Document Publication and Design (3 credits)
OCT 121 Business Communications (3 credits)
OCT 250 Word/Information Processing Applications I (3 credits)

Third Semester
OCT 215 Specialized Machine Transcription (3 credits)
OCT 230 Legal Office Procedures (3 credits)
OCT 251 Word/Information Processing Applications II (3 credits)


 

NOTE:
(1) This plan assumes the completion of all required developmental courses in reading, English, and mathematics as well as other pre-requisites and co-requisites for some of the courses, as listed in the Course Descriptions section.

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