Legal Studies Admissions and Transfer Credit Policies
Enrollment and Entrance Requirements
Applicants to our program must be accepted to Clayton State through the Office of Admissions. Please note that paralegals and other non-lawyers may not provide legal services directly to the public, except as permitted by law.
- Paralegal Certificate Program
- Applicants for the Paralegal Certificate must apply to start in the fall or spring semester; they cannot begin in the summer.
- All applicants to the Paralegal Certificate (including if you already possess a bachelor’s or higher degree) should apply as a “Transfer” student, to ensure you are assigned to the correct major and academic advisor. Do not apply as a “Post-Baccalaureate” student, or you will be sent to the graduate school. Apply for the Paralegal Certificate as a transfer student.
- If you have any prior college credit and/or have an associate’s degree, you may apply for the Paralegal Certificate if you have already earned at least 60 semester hours of college credit, of which at least 18 semester credits/27 quarter credits are general education courses in at least 3 different areas, such as English, Math, Science, Social Sciences.
- B.S., Legal Studies Degree and A.S., Paralegal Studies Degree.
- The Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Legal Studies and the Associate of Science (A.S.) degree in Paralegal Studies are open to applicants who do not qualify for (or who choose not to enter) the Paralegal Certificate Program. You should indicate on your application to Clayton State that you are applying for the B.S. degree in Legal Studies or the A.S. degree in Paralegal Studies.
- Graduates of an A.S. Degree are encouraged to pursue a 4-year B.S. degree in Legal Studies at Clayton State to ensure more job opportunities and career advancement.
NOTE: All Legal Studies/Paralegal Studies program students are required to take at least nine semester credits or equivalent of legal specialty courses through face-to-face or online synchronous instruction.
Policy on Transfer Credits for Legal Specialty Courses:
- We accept course credits from institutions in the USG (University System of Georgia) and the TCSG (Technical College System of Georgia).
- We also accept course credits from regionally-accredited institutions outside of the USG and the TCSG that are ABA-approved or institutional members of AAfPE (American Association for Paralegal Education).
- We may also accept course credits from regionally-accredited institutions that are not ABA-approved or institutional members of AAfPE if adequate evidence is provided to document that the transfer course meets an appropriate level of academic rigor and compliance with ABA guidelines for paralegal education.
- The student must have earned a grade of "C" or higher in any legal specialty course for which transfer credit is sought.
- The student must comply with Clayton State residency requirements as contained in our Academic Catalog: see Certificate Residency Requirements and Residency Requirements for A.S. and B.S.
- The program has limits on the number of legal specialty credits that can be earned
- The Certificate requires a total of 18 credit hours, all of which must be legal specialty credits. No more than nine (9) legal specialty credits can be earned through transfer.
- The A.S. requires a total of 60 credit hours, 18 of which must be legal specialty credits. No more than six (6) legal specialty credits can be earned through transfer.
- The B.S. requires a total of 120 credit hours, 30 legal specialty credits are required and students may elect for another 12 legal specialty credits to count as free electives. No more than 42 legal specialty credits can be earned through transfer.
- Whether a legal specialty course is transferable to Clayton State is subject to the discretion of the Legal Studies Program Coordinator. Clayton State reserves the right to request syllabi and additional course materials for any class for which transfer credit is sought.