Paralegal Icon

Paralegal/Legal Assisting
[2018, 4004]

Paralegal/Legal Assisting [2018]

Associate in Science Degree (64 Credit Hours)

Program Goals

The goal of SCF's paralegal program is to educate paralegals with an effective balance of legal knowledge and practical skills. Our program prepares the student for work in the legal profession upon graduation and to take the National Legal Assistant Certification Exam. This program is considered to be substantially in compliance with ABA guidelines for paralegal education by the American Association for Paralegal Education (AAfPE).

Program Information

The SCF Paralegal/Legal Assisting Program is a voting member of AAfPE and is considered by that organization to be substantially in compliance with American Bar Association (ABA) requirements for paralegal programs. SCF instructors have diverse legal experiences and are highly qualified and dedicated to ensuring that all students attain their maximum potential in their academic endeavors. For more information, see the see the AAfPE Educational Position Statements page.

The Paralegal program at State College of Florida is not approved by the American Bar Association (ABA), but as a voting member of the American Association of Paralegal Education (AAfPE), it is considered by that organization to be in substantial compliance with the ABA guidelines for approval of paralegal programs. The courses are taught by attorneys and qualified paralegals. Many of our courses are project-oriented and offer hands-on experience.

AAfPE definition of Paralegals: Paralegals perform substantive and procedural legal work as authorized by law, which work, in the absence of the paralegal, would be performed by an attorney. Paralegals have knowledge of the law gained through education, or education and work experience, which qualifies them to perform legal work. Paralegals adhere to recognized ethical standards and rules of professional responsibility.

Lawyers delegate many tasks to the paralegals who assist them with their work, which may include helping to prepare for real estate closings, interviews, hearings, mediation, trials and corporate meetings, and draft discovery, correspondence, and pleadings.

Unauthorized Practice of Law (UPL) Statement: Paralegals work under the supervision of a licensed attorney and are not authorized to practice law in Florida.

> View Catalog Entry
> Download Degree Pathway

> Download Quick Facts

Paralegal/Legal Assisting [4004]

Advanced Technical Certificate (31 Credit Hours)

Program goals

The Legal Assisting/Paralegal Advanced Technical Certificate is designed to enable students who already hold any college degree (other than the legal assisting A.S.) to take paralegal training at State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota (SCF) and qualify to take the National Paralegal Certification (CLA) exam. It further prepares those students for work of a legal nature in law offices, corporations or government agencies.

> View Catalog Entry

Program Contact

Advisor Image - Suzanne Bechtol

Program Manager

Dr. Suzanne Bechtol

941-752-5359 Bradenton
941-408-1300, ext. 65359 Venice



Students planning to pursue any degree or certificate are strongly encouraged to meet with an academic advisor. Advisors can ensure proper course selection and program success.

> Academic Advising


Career Pathways and Articulation

As a Sarasota or Manatee county school student, you may have taken career, technical or academy classes at your high school or technical college. Through a career pathways agreement between SCF and the local school districts, students can receive college credit for the work they’ve completed.

> Learn More

Page Edit