Paralegal Studies Certificate Program

The University of South Carolina

How long?

  • 6 months
  • online

What are the topics?

The University of South Carolina


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Who should attend

  • Legal staff wishing to enhance or advance their careers by earning a professional credential
  • Career changers seeking a professional career with strong compensation
  • Anyone considering law school who would like a head-start on their peers

About the course

You can earn your Paralegal Certificate from USC - in the classroom or online! Quickly complete your studies in just over six months and enter this rewarding legal field with the confidence and credentials to succeed.

How Our Program is Unique

This program prepares you for a successful career in one of the fastest growing professions in the United States. Our training will hone your talents in areas ranging from legal research and analysis to locating and interviewing witnesses. Complete your studies and enter the rewarding paralegal field with the confidence and credentials to succeed!

Our program offers you:

  • A choice of classroom or online formats
  • Over 120 hours of learning in a six-month comprehensive format
  • Excellent resources including, textbooks, workbooks, and online support (all included in your tuition)
  • Students research legal issues involved in a real-life client fact-pattern and draft a case-brief and research memorandum about the case.
  • Career development opportunities, such as resume writing and interviewing skills, to help you enter the legal field with confidence.

Scheduling to Fit Your Needs

Our online evening and Saturday classroom formats allow you to attend classes while still maintaining your work or personal schedule during the week. Our program utilizes three learning components to provide you with a well-rounded paralegal education.

Our program is divided into six educational components including Introduction to Law, Torts and Personal Injury, Legal Research and Writing, Civil Litigation, Contract Law, and Family Law for a total of over 120 classroom hours.

Earning Your Certificate

To earn the USC Paralegal Certificate, all students must:

  • Complete all six modules with a score of 70% or higher in each class, and
  • Achieve a score of 75% or higher in the overall program.

Student Support

In addition to class sessions, students receive many additional educational support tools including:

  • A student support website (Moodle) which will provide several educational tools and opportunitiese to interact with other students and instructors including lecture notes, common student questions, exercises, mock quizzes and discussion boards
  • Access to Westlaw during the Legal Research and Writing course. Individualized Westlaw IDs provide access to this powerful legal research tool from any computer with an internet connection.
  • Unparalleled phone and e-mail support
  • This program offers a user-friendly support website providing several educational tools and opportunities to interact with other students and instructors, including:

    • Lecture notes
    • Common student questions
    • Exercises
    • Mock quizzes
    • Discussion boards

It is important to us that you succeed in your learning experience at USC. That is why we provide continued support throughout your paralegal training. You will have access to technical and instructional assistance throughout the program, as well as phone and email support from our dedicated paralegal certificate program staff and instructors. We are available to answer technical questions regarding website access and provide instructional support for assignments or materials. Once you enroll, a thorough orientation will be provided on the first day of class.


Robert Phillips

Robert B. (Sam) Phillips currently serves as the Director of the Certificate of Need (CON) Program with the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC). Mr. Phillips also serves as the Deputy Staff Judge Advocate General for the South Carolina State Guard where he represe...

Patrick McCabe

Patrick A. McCabe, a native of Cincinnati, Ohio worked as a firefighter/ paramedic before receiving his Bachelor of Science from the University of Cincinnati in 2005. Patrick received his Juris Doctor from the Thomas M. Cooley Law School in 2009 where he was a member of Delta Theta Phi legal frat...

Derek Shoemake

Derek A. Shoemake has taught in the University of South Carolina's paralegal certification program since 2010. He currently teaches Civil Litigation, and has taught both Introduction to Law and Legal Writing. Derek, an experienced litigator, works as an attorney at Simmons Law Firm and has repres...

Kate Crater

Kate Herbein Crater is the Deputy Chief Staff Attorney with the South Carolina Court of Appeals. Along with the Chief Staff Attorney, Kate manages a central staff of fifteen attorneys, researches and analyzes legal issues before the court, presents motions and other legal issues to the judges, dr...

Janet Haigler

Janet B. Haigler is a member of Haigler Law Firm LLC and has practiced in the area of bankruptcy, creditor rights, and commercial litigation for over twenty years. In 2014, Ms. Haigler was appointed by the Office of the United States Trustee as a Chapter 7 Panel Trustee for the District of South ...

Lisa Hostetler

Lisa Hostetler Brown is the Managing Attorney of LawyerLisa, LLC. LawyerLisa's focus is to better serve our clients in an easy to understand and accessible manner. Keeping pace with the changing market, timely communication with clients and agents and thoughtful legal advice are the cornerstone...

Jordan Stallings

Jordan T. Stallings is an associate attorney with Blair Cato Pickren Casterline, LLC. Jordan concentrates his practice in real estate matters, including real estate transactions, contract review and drafting, title issue resolution, and estate planning. While obtaining dual Bachelor degrees in Re...

Cathy Boette

Cathy Boette is the Director of Professional Programs at Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough LLP, where she has worked for more than 30 years. Ms. Boette is responsible for overseeing the Firm's Paralegal and Policy Advisor Programs and the Firm's Summer Undergraduate Internship Program. Ms. B...

Edgar Smith

Ed currently serves as Civil Frauds Investigator, Department of Justice, United States Attorney’s Office, District of South Carolina. Ed is presently pursuing his Master’s Degree in Law Firm Management at the George Washington University, College of Professional Studies. His anticipated graduatio...

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Paralegal Studies Certificate Program at The University of South Carolina

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