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About Program

Oxnard College’s Paralegal Studies Program is American Bar Association approved. 

ABA logo in blue font with text below stating American Bar Association and line below. ABA Approved Paralegal Program. Image is the ABA logo

Embark on your journey to a rewarding career in the legal field at Oxnard College, where our Paralegal Studies Program proudly holds American Bar Association (ABA) approval. At OC, you will gain a competitive edge in the job market as employers actively seek candidates with ABA-approved qualifications. Our program boasts a team of experienced instructors who will provide you with the hands-on training and essential tools needed to excel as a paralegal. Join us at Oxnard College and open the door to a world of opportunities in the legal profession, setting your course for a successful and fulfilling career.

Your career in law starts here!

The law programs at Oxnard College prepare students to be paralegals with responsibility for assisting attorneys in preparation of cases for trial or arbitration, researching existing laws, and performing a moderate degree of investigation. Our experienced faculty have served as attorneys and paralegals at leading law firms, corporations, and public sector organizations and are selected based on their professional credentials, subject matter expertise, experience, ability to teach at the university level, and experience working with paralegals. Get an affordable, world-class education close to home!

Choose your pathway!

The Law Program currently offer two pathways to a career as a paralegal:

* The Paralegal Studies Certificate will be granted upon the completion of all required courses and only to students who possess an associate's degree or bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution.

Per ABA Guidelines, all students are required to take at least 9 semester credits of legal specialty (i.e., Paralegal courses) through synchronous classroom instruction, which includes live online and/or HyFlex modalities.

The ABA stresses that Paralegals may not provide legal services directly to the public except as permitted by law.

The Law Program also offers one non-paralegal option:

  • Certificate of Achievement - Legal Secretary**

While the Legal Secretary Certificate of Achievement alone does not prepare students to work as paralegals, it can be earned either as a stand-alone certificate or as you progress towards your Paralegal Certificate and/or Associate of Science in Paralegal Studies.

Paralegal Studies PACE Program

The Paralegal Program has introduced a new fast-paced alternative to the traditional two year course of study beginning Fall 2022, called PACE (Program for Accelerated College Education). The PACE program allows qualified, highly motivated students with an Associate or Bachelors' Degree the opportunity to finish the Paralegal Certificate in just one year!

Interested? Find out more by scheduling a meeting with an Oxnard College Counselor HERE!  


Course Transfer Policy

If you are a new or prospective student and you wish to request any deviation from the core course (legal specialty) requirements for Oxnard College Paralegal Studies Courses, you must meet with a Counselor from the Career Center or an Academic Counselor and fill out a request for course equivalency and provide supporting documents (i.e., the course description from the school catalog, the course outline of record, and official transcripts). Please note: courses with the same title may not automatically qualify for equivalency. We encourage you to speak with a counselor prior to taking courses outside those offered at Oxnard College.

What is a paralegal?

Paralegals and legal assistants are found in all types of organizations, but most work for law firms, corporate legal departments, or government agencies.

Paralegals, legal assistants and other legal support staff perform a variety of tasks to support lawyers and their clients, including maintaining and organizing files, conducting legal research, investigating the facts of a case, interviewing clients and witnesses, and drafting legal documents to file with the court.

Career Outlook

Paralegals and legal assistants perform a variety of tasks to support lawyers. According to U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of paralegals and legal assistants is projected to grow over 10% from 2019-2029, much faster than the average for all occupations. Formally trained paralegals with strong computer and database management skills should have the best job prospects.

Private law firms will continue to be the largest employers of paralegals, but a  growing array of other organizations, such as corporate legal departments, insurance companies, real estate and title insurance firms, and banks hire paralegals. Corporations in particular are boosting their in-house legal departments to cut costs. Demand for paralegals also is expected to grow as an expanding population increasingly requires legal services especially in areas such as intellectual property, health care, international law, elder issues, criminal law, and environmental law.

What Qualifies an Individual to be a Paralegal?

In California, a paralegal is required--among other options--to obtain a certificate of completion or a degree from a paralegal program at an accredited postsecondary institution. California Business & Professions Code sections 6402.1(c) and 6450(c). The Paralegal Studies Program satisfies these legal requirements. Oxnard College's Paralegal Program prepares students to be a paralegal with responsibility for assisting the attorney in preparation of cases for trial or arbitration, researching existing laws.

Course Options

The certificate program now provides in-person and online courses.

Currently, all online classes have a synchronous component and have a weekly virtual classroom experience via Zoom conferencing which ensures every student can access the same live lecture whether they are in a traditional classroom setting or taking a class remotely. Professors teaching online classes are committed to student success and have designed the classes with the online student in mind. Professors are also accessible to online students to help them succeed in their classes. At times, courses may be offered asynchronously. Should a student take asynchronous courses to fulfill program requirements, that student must complete at least nine semester credits or the equivalent of legal specialty courses through synchronous instruction, which includes traditional in-person, hybrid, and synchronous online courses.

In accordance with American Bar Association Guideline G-302, the Certificate of Achievement shall be restricted to those who have either earned an Associate’s or Bachelor’s Degree from a regionally/nationally accredited institution prior to entry into the Paralegal Program, or those who are concurrently enrolled and complete the Paralegal Studies A.S. or equivalent Associate’s Degree. 

Important Notice:

Paralegals may not provide legal services directly to the public, except as permitted by law.

Bureau of Labor Statistics Average Mean Wage for Paralegals
US Bureau of Labor Statistics Annual Mean Wage for Paralegals By State California: $70,290