The Legal Writing Specialist

The Legal Research & Writing course is designed to introduce students to legal thought, writing styles and research methods used in the profession every day. Students will be introduced to various methods used to solve clients’ problems by using effective research techniques, accurate and in-depth legal analysis, and the clear and concise written and oral communication that are paramount to the legal profession. As these skills can only improve with a great deal of practice, this course offers the foundation from which students can build on these skills for years to come.


The Legal Writing Specialist Program

For those students looking toward law school or who are interested in the paralegal profession, this program offers an incredibly useful and realistic look into the actual work that lawyers and legal professionals do every day. Using a problem-solving approach, students will use the tools and techniques introduced to represent a fictional client and provide the clients with legal advice. Students will learn essential skills of successful lawyers, including researching legal authorities, applying the law to a client’s situation, and communicating that analysis both in writing and verbally.

This program is designed to provide students with a solid working knowledge of the tools available in law libraries, including both state and federal primary and secondary materials. Students will find, analyze, and solve problems in the legal world. In addition, students will adapt the research material into legal memoranda, briefs and other useful work product while communicating the results in a competent and ethical manner.


Program Objectives

At the conclusion of this program, students will be able to:

  • Summarize research practices used by a paralegal
  • Analyze ethical issues related to research
  • Describe the main products of legal research
  • Analyze the facts in a case
  • Classify legal research sources
  • Differentiate mandatory authority from persuasive authority
  • Research enacted law
  • Analyze enacted law
  • Research case law
  • Analyze case law
  • Use secondary sources as part of legal research
  • Compare researched cases with client cases
  • Validate case law using a citator
  • Apply professional writing styles appropriate for legal communica¬tion
  • Write a case brief
  • Write an internal memorandum of law
  • Prepare other legal documents
  • Use Microsoft Office


Education and National Certifications

  • Students should have or be pursuing a high school diploma or GED.
  • There are no state approval and/or state requirements associated with this program.
  • There is a National Certification exam available to students who successfully complete this program:
    • Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) Certification Exam.

National Certification

Upon successful completion of this  program, students would be eligible to sit for the Microsoft Office Specialist (MOS) exam. Although there are no state approval, state registration or other state requirements for this program, students who complete this program  will be prepared and are eligible to sit for this national certification exam. Students who complete this program are encouraged to complete the externship option with their program. Students who complete this program can and do sit for the MOS national certification exams and are qualified, eligible and prepared to do so.

Externship / Hands on Training / Practicum

Although not a requirement, once students complete the program, they have the ability to participate in an externship and/or hands on practicum so as to practice the skills necessary to perform the job requirements of a professional in this field. Students will be assisted with completing a resume and/or other requirements necessary to work in this field. All students who complete this program are eligible to participate in an externship and will be placed with a participating organization near their location.