Jun 16, 2024  
2024-2025 Undergraduate Catalog [Working Draft] 
2024-2025 Undergraduate Catalog [Working Draft]

Paralegal [BS]

Location(s): In-person/hybrid

The American Bar Association defines a paralegal as: “a person, qualified by education, training or work experience who is employed or retained by a lawyer, law office, corporation, governmental agency or other entity and who performs specifically delegated substantive legal work for which a lawyer is responsible. Paralegals may not provide legal services directly to the public, except as permitted by law, and must work directly under the supervision of an attorney.”

Since 1975 the American Bar Association has approved paralegal programs that satisfy rigorous standards. Approved by the American Bar Association, EMU’s Paralegal Program offers both a bachelor’s degree and a second bachelor’s degree.

The American Bar Association approves the Eastern Michigan University Paralegal Program. 

Click here to watch a short video about this program.


A Paralegal major provides professional training that lays the foundation for a career in the legal field. 

The Paralegal Program faculty – all of whom are attorneys – are committed to providing students with “real world” skills needed to succeed in today’s legal profession and to work under the supervision of an attorney. Skills students learn to include:

  • Proficiency in legal research, writing, and analysis;
  • Using computer-based research and office management tools;
  • Learning court rules and procedures;
  • Learning doctrinal law on topics including tort law, civil procedure, family law, and probate law:
  • Drafting legal documents;
  • Understanding corporate transactions;
  • Interviewing clients and case investigation; 
  • Preparing for a civil trial; and
  • Learning to apply skills to and within the ethical standards of the legal profession and how to avoid the unauthorized practice of law.


Employment opportunities are excellent in law firms, corporations, banks, human resource offices, hospitals, state and federal governments, and court systems. A number of graduates go to law school when they receive their Paralegal degree or after working in the legal field for a few years.

Students participate in an internship during their degree program, enabling them to complete the program with work experience on a resume. EMU Paralegal Program students have the amazing and unique opportunity to work in the Washtenaw County-EMU Legal Resource Center located in Ann Arbor. 

For General Education requirements and other Eastern Michigan University requirements, contact the GameAbove College of Engineering & Technology Advising at 734.487.9751 or cot_advising@emich.edu | Make an appointment

For information on Articulation Agreements, see Transfer Agreements . If you have a question about an Articulation Agreement, contact Transfer Partnerships.

School Information

Technology and Professional Services Management 206 Roosevelt Hall, 734.487.1161 

Paul Majeske, Interim Director

Advisor Information

General Education (and other university requirements) Advising

GameAbove College of Engineering and Technology Student Services | Make an appointment, 203 Sill Hall, 734.487.9751 

Faculty Advisor

To find your faculty advisor, please see School of Technology and Professional Services Management Advisors.

Program Admission

Students who wish to pursue this major must apply for admission to the program.

Students may be admitted to the program in the fall or winter terms. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis.

Program admission criteria are:

  • Admission to the University as an undergraduate or second bachelor’s degree candidate.
  • Completion of WRTG 121  with a grade of “B” or higher.

Students applying for admission to the program as second bachelor’s degree candidates must present evidence of having completed an acceptable college-level English composition course with a grade of “B” or higher. A remedial course is not an acceptable college-level English composition course

Students satisfying these criteria are eligible to apply for admission to the program, but admission is not guaranteed.

Program Retention Policy

In addition to secondary admission requirements, students are required to:

  • Complete each program core “LEGL” course with a minimum grade of C.

If a student earns lower than a C in any program core course, the student will be allowed to repeat the course twice. If the student fails to earn a C or better in the repeated courses, the student will be dismissed from the program. Please note LEGL 211  (“B-“) and LEGL 304W  (“C+”) require a higher minimum grade

  • Maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale (See note below)
  • Maintain a GPA within the major of at least 2.5 on a 4.0 scale (See note below)

A student whose cumulative GPA or cumulative major GPA falls below 2.5 will be placed on program probation for the next succeeding term. If the student fails to raise his or her cumulative GPA, cumulative major GPA or both to 2.5 or higher with the grades earned during the probationary term, the student will be dismissed from the program. For purposes of this policy, a student who is placed on program probation as the result of a deficient GPA at the close of a winter term will have until the close of the next fall term to raise his or her GPA to 2.5 or higher.

  • Students must take a minimum of nine credits or the equivalent of legal specialty courses through synchronous instruction.

General Education Requirements:

For specific requirements, see General Education  or view the General Education Worksheet [PDF] .  

Major Requirements: 72 hours

Required Foundational Courses: 6 hours

Satisfy one of the following options.

Restricted Elective Courses: 18 hours

Minor Requirement:

This major does not require a minor.

Program Total:

Students must earn a minimum total of 120 credits at the 100-level or above.

Critical Graduation Information

Each undergraduate student will be responsible for fulfilling the requirements (or their equivalents) of the Eastern Michigan University catalog in force at the time of their initial registration at a college or university or a subsequent catalog, including the one in effect at the time of their graduation.

In the event an undergraduate student does not complete the degree requirements within seven years of the date of their original registration at a college or university, the student may be required to have their credits re-evaluated by the academic department(s) of their major/minor in keeping with catalog requirements in force during the year of their graduation.

Minimum requirements for all bachelor’s degrees awarded by Eastern Michigan University

Some majors and minors require more than the minimum in one or more of the areas below; students are urged to consult this catalog for the requirements of their particular programs.

  • Earn a minimum total of 120 credit hours at the 100-level and above.
    • Courses numbered below 100 are not counted toward this degree requirement.
    • At most, eight credit hours of physical education (PEGN) activity courses are counted toward this requirement.
  • Meet the requirements of the General Education program (see information below), including completing a Writing Intensive (GEWI) course in the student’s major.
  • Earn a minimum of 60 credits from a four-year college or university; courses taken at community colleges cannot be used to meet this requirement (Some formal program-to-program articulation agreements modify this requirement. See specific agreements for details).
  • Earn a minimum of 30 credits from courses taken at EMU.
  • Complete 10 of the last 30 hours for the degree from courses taken at EMU.
  • Have a minimum of 30 unique credit hours in their major and 20 unique credit hours in their minor for a total of at least 50 unique credit hours between them. Some majors that require 50 or more hours themselves do not require a minor. A double major automatically satisfies the need for a minor unless one of the two majors requires a specific minor. Students should check the requirements of the selected major in the undergraduate catalog to see if a minor is required. 
  • Earn no more than 60 credit hours in one subject area (prefix). Credits over the 60 maximum will not be counted toward the minimum of 120 credits required for a bachelor’s degree.
  • Earn the minimum number of credits in 300-level and above courses in each major and minor as specified below - these credits must be earned in distinct courses; that is, no course can be used to fulfill this requirement in more than one major or minor.
    • Earn a minimum of 6 credits in 300-level or higher courses at EMU in each minor
    • Earn a minimum of 9 credits in 300-level or higher courses at EMU in each major that requires a minor.
    • Earn a minimum of 15 credits in 300-level or higher courses at EMU in each major that does not require a minor
  • Transfer credit will be awarded for courses taken at colleges and universities that are accredited by one of the recognized regional accrediting bodies only if the courses are college-level (equated to 100-level or above at EMU) and the student earned a “C” (or 2.0 on a 4 point scale) or better. Transfer credit may be awarded on a case-by-case basis for college-level courses in which a “C” (2.0) or better was earned at institutions outside the U.S. or at non-accredited U.S. institutions; individual departments/schools conduct the internal review of such courses within EMU, and additional documentation may be required. Please note: EMU awards only credit for transferred courses; grades are not used to calculate an EMU GPA.
  • Earn a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 in courses taken at EMU to graduate. In addition, a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 must be reached in each major and minor. Only courses a student takes at EMU and those applied to their major or minor are used to calculate their major and minor cumulative GPAs. (Note: some programs may require a higher GPA - check with your program advisor.)

General Education Requirements - EMU’s General Education Program requires students to choose from a menu of approved courses in several different areas; do not assume that other courses in the same department or similar names will fulfill these requirements. A detailed description of General Education requirements is available in the General Education  section of the catalog.

Students who transferred to EMU may have modified general education requirements based on Michigan Transfer Agreement (MTA) or articulation agreements; consult your academic advisor for additional information.