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Legal Studies

Bachelor of Arts in Legal Studies

The Bachelor of Arts in Legal Studies is a liberal arts program designed for students interested in public or private sector opportunities which require broad-based knowledge of the law, such as legal assisting or paralegal careers. Students may either major or minor in Legal Studies. The program offers an interdisciplinary curriculum which allows students to study legal ideas, institutions, and process and to develop the analytic and composition skills necessary for success in a variety of law-related endeavors. The program also provides a foundation for students interested in attending law school or other post-graduate legal studies programs.

Requirements to Major in Legal Studies

1. Required Courses (10 Credits):

  • LS 1110 – U.S. Legal Systems
  • LS 2110 – The Legal Reasoning Process
  • HS 1130 – Evolution of American Democracy
  • PO 1110 – U.S. Politics
  • LS 3110 – Civil Litigation
  • CJ 3140 – Criminal Law
  • CJ/PO 4310 – Constitutional Law
  • CJ/PO 3130 – Judicial Process
  • LS 4000 – Issues in Professional Practice: Legal Studies (capstone)

2. Plus Choice of the Following Courses (5 Credits):

Choose one of either:

  • SO 1110 – Introduction to Sociology or PS 1110 – Introduction to Psychology
  • CO 1110 – Oral Communication or LS 2120 – Mock Trial
  • PA 2330 – Legal Ethics or CJ/PS 2320 – Criminal Justice Ethics
  • EC 2110 – Microeconomics or EC 2120 – Macroeconomics

Plus any two:

  • LS/CJ/PO Elective-3000 level or higher

Requirements to Minor in Legal Studies

  • LS 1110 – U.S. Legal Systems
  • LS 2110 – The Legal Reasoning Process
  • LS 3110 – Civil Litigation or  CJ 3140 – Criminal Law
  • CJ/PO 4310 – Constitutional Law

One additional CJ or LS course

Course Descriptions

**All undergraduate courses are 4 credits unless otherwise noted. 

LS 1110 U.S. Legal System

This course provides an introduction to the American Legal System, including its history, philosophy, and practices. Students will consider the structure and function of the legal system, several substantive areas of the law (e.g., torts and contract law), and the dynamic relationship between law and social policy. No prerequisite; meets LAS 2 requirement.

LS 2110 The Legal Reasoning Process

This introductory course provides the opportunity for students to become competent in the use of primary and secondary legal resource materials. Students will analyze and research legal problems and will prepare legal memoranda based on the research. Writing clarity, proper citation format, and case history research are emphasized. Prerequisites: CJ 1110, or LS 1110, or WR 1020.  

LS 2120 Mock Trial

This course will introduce students to trial procedure using a prepared “case” complete with witness statements, exhibits and applicable law. Focus is on building critical thinking, writing and public speaking skills. During the semester, students will prepare for their cases, commencing with a final trial at the end of the semester. Prerequisite: CJ 1110, or LS 1110, or WR 1020.

LS 3110 Civil Litigation      

This course examines the practices and procedures for commencing and maintaining civil lawsuits in Federal and state courts, including discovery process, trial preparation, and post-trial considerations. While theoretical and tactical issues are discussed, practical issues, such as the drafting of complaints, interrogatories, memoranda and other pleadings also are considered. Prerequisite: LS 2110 – The Legal Reasoning Process.

LS 4000 Issues in Professional Practice: Legal Studies

This capstone course considers current controversies and future trends in law related disciplines. Students will be required to choose and conduct research on contemporary philosophical, sociological, political, or technological issues facing the legal profession. Prerequisite: Senior standing.

LS 4810 Directed Study     

Course of study to be arranged between faculty and student in the field of Legal Studies. Contract required; Variable credit (1-4). May be repeated for credit.

LS 4830 Independent Study

Advanced, independent study of a specific topic. Course of study to be arranged with a faculty member. Contract required; Variable credit (1-4).

LS 4910 Internship

Students may complete internships in legal studies organizations and agencies, or related areas. Contract required; Variable credit (1-16).