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De Anza College

The American Bar Association approves of the Paralegal Studies Program at De Anza College. The main objective of the program is to educate students for positions as paralegals where they can display the proficiency and ethical standards demanded of the profession.

The program specifically aims to:

  • Give paralegal students a well-rounded, balanced education based on a beneficial mixture of general and legal education, including theory and practical courses, and placing emphasis on reasoning and understanding rather than learning facts by rote.
  • Further the paralegal students' knowledge of the basic operation and structure of both the federal and California state legal systems.
  • Ensure that future paralegals develop an understanding and appreciation of ethical considerations in the profession.
  • Help future paralegals to learn the skills they need for professional practice, such as:
    • Communication skills both written and oral.
    • Basic legal research abilities extending to computer assisted research, and proficiency using federal and state research tools.
    • capability to carry out basic legal writings such as office correspondence, interoffice memoranda, memoranda of law
    • Thorough knowledge and ability to function in the area of civil litigation including the ability to outline documents such as pleadings and motions
    • Adequate knowledge in several legal disciplines to perform paralegal duties working in a specific area.

Graduates from paralegal programs are not allowed to appear in court, to give legal advice, or in any way perform unauthorized law practice. It is illegal for anyone who is not an attorney to practice law.

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