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    Paralegal Program

    Samford University Paralegal Program Logo

    About the Program

    • Experienced, dedicated faculty and staff understand the needs of working adults
    • Our ten-course certificate can be completed in one year
    • Financial aid is available for those who qualify
    • Small class sizes are conducive to learning and relationship-building
    • Classes are conveniently scheduled in the evenings

    Program Outcomes

    1. To train students in a practical way for careers as paralegals to attorneys.
    2. To promote a basic understanding of legal concepts and terms on subjects that are important to those engaged in general practice or in specialized areas of law and to equip students with legal writing and research skills that will enable graduates to perform as skilled members of a legal team.
    3. To provide a general understanding of the principles of ethical and professional responsibility as these relate to lawyers and paralegals.
    4. To provide a broad background in general education for development of educated, socially, morally, and ethically aware individuals.
    5. To constantly upgrade and adjust the program to fulfill the needs of the community by seeking input from local attorneys, paralegals, and students.

    Application Deadlines

    Summer 2015

    Priority Deadline* May 13, 2015
    Final Deadline**   May 22, 2015
    Term Begins June 1, 2015

    Fall 2015

    Priority Deadline* July 29, 2015
    Final Deadline** August 7, 2015
    Term Begins August 17, 2015

    Spring 2016

    Priority Deadline* January 6, 2016
    Final Deadline** January 15, 2016
    Term Begins January 25, 2016

    * Submission of FAFSA and completed application by this date guarantees financial aid consideration for the current term.

    ** Applicants applying for admission after this date may be eligible for financial aid through the submission of the FAFSA. Due to possible timing issues or time constraints, financial aid may not be available for disbursement by the first day of class. Students must secure other funding in the meantime to guarantee their continued enrollment.

    Applicant Criteria

    Prospective students must meet one of the following criteria:

    Received a Bachelor's or Associate's Degree

    The student has earned a bachelor's degree or a transferrable associate's degree from a regionally accredited institution.

    Completed 30 Credit Hours Toward a Degree

    The student has earned thirty credit hours from a regionally accredited institution regardless of whether or not a degree was earned. Students who fall into this category must also meet the general education minimums established by the American Bar Association Standing Committee on Paralegals. Download the transcript checksheet we will use to evaluate your transcripts to determine if those requirements have been met. In addition to the application requirements listed below, applicants in this category must have two years' relevant work experience in the legal field and submit two letters of reference from employers who can speak to the students' capacity for success in this program.

    Transcript Checksheet


    The following materials are required before we can begin to review your application.

    • Completed online application
    • Letter(s) of recommendation
    • Current resume
    • Application essay
    • Official transcripts from each institution attended

    As noted above, applicants who do not have a degree and who do not intend to pursue a bachelor's degree must meet additional criteria before their application can be reviewed, and an application decision made. The Paralegal Studies Certificate Program admits students for the fall, spring, and summer terms. For more information, view our catalog.

    Information for International Students


    Schedules and Course Information

    Important Financial Information

    • The current tuition per credit hour is $350. The program is 30 credit hours, consisting of 10, 3-credit courses.
    • A one-time fee of $95 will attach to registration in Legal Research and Writing (PARA 123) which will allow you access to Westlaw for the duration of the program.
    • This is an undergraduate level program.  Please make note of that when you complete your FAFSA, should you choose to apply for financial aid.
    • The number of undergraduate hours you have earned will determine the amount of aid for which you qualify. For all financial-aid related questions, please contact the Elizabeth Martin in the Office of Financial Aid at 205-726-2905 or by email at edmarti1@samford.edu.
    • For payment due dates and other payment-related questions, please visit the Bursar's Office website or call that office at 205-726-2816.
    • To begin your Free Application for Federal Student Aid, visit www.fafsa.ed.gov.

    Salary and Employment Information

    From the Bureau of Labor Statistics

    Other Useful Links about the Paralegal Profession

    Consumer Information

    Estimated transportation costs per year - $1,750.00
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    Have Questions?
    Contact Us

    Paralegal Program
    Phone: 726-2542
    Fax: 726-2191
    Mail correspondence and official transcripts, to:
    Samford University
    Paralegal Studies Certificate Program
    800 Lakeshore Drive
    Birmingham, Alabama 35229

    Visit Us

    We are located in Robinson Hall (building #48 on the Campus Map). Laura Tomlin's office is on the Mezzanine, Room M10.


    Photo of Laura Tomlin

    Laura Tomlin