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Legal Studies - Program Description

According to the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics, "The legal system affects nearly every aspect of our society, from buying a home to crossing the street." Such a profound impact suggests that there are a variety of opportunities for individuals with an education in Legal Studies. The Department of Labor states that employers prefer graduates of postsecondary education programs. A graduate of SUNY Canton's Legal Studies program may find employment in law firms, corporations, hospitals, and local, state or federal government offices. Since the program covers many legal specialties, students may choose electives that may help them to specialize in one or more areas.

Students in this Major:

  • Spend a significant amount of time doing legal research and legal writing
  • May also take courses in Accounting, Business, Criminal Justice or Law Enforcement Leadership
  • Receive an interdisciplinary education
  • Complete a semester-long internship with a legal organization as a culminating experience

Career Opportunities:

  • Paralegals or legal assistants in law firms
  • Real estate and mortgage preparation
  • Claims adjusters, examiners, and investigators
  • Occupational health and safety specialists
  • Government paralegals local state and federal
  • Contracts administrators
  • District Attorney, Sheriff and Probation Offices
  • Freelance Paralegal

Career Outlook:

  • Jobs for graduates in Legal Studies are projected to grow faster than average for all occupations through 2018 according to the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Admission Requirements:

  • Refer to the table of high school course prerequisites for admission.
  • Students must be prepared to take Expository Writing (ENGL 101) or Oral and Written Expression(ENGL 102).
  • Students must take Business Law I and II (BSAD 201 & 202) and earn a cumulative grade point average of 2.5 in these classes.
  • Transfer students must meet re-registration requirements to be considered for admission.


Semester I Credits

BSAD 201 Business Law I 3
CITA 110 Intro to Information Technology 3
ENGL 101
ENGL 102
Expository Writing (GER 10) OR
Oral & Written Expression (GER 10)
FYEP 101 First Year Experience 1
JUST 101 Introduction to Criminal Justice 3
LEST 101 American Legal System 3

Semester II Credits

BSAD 200 Business Communications 3
BSAD 202 Business Law II 3
CITA 101 Library/Information Literacy 1
  Math Elective (GER 1) 3-4
  Social Science Elective (GER 3) 3
  American History Elective (GER 4) 3

Semester III Credits

ACCT 101 Foundations of Financial Accounting 4
JUST 110 Criminal Law 3
Foreign Language (GER 9) 3
  Natural Sciences Elective (GER 2) 3-4
  Western Civilization Elective (GER 5) 3

Semester IV Credits

ACCT 102 Foundations of Managerial Accounting 3
JUST 111 Criminal Procedure 3
LEST 310 Legal Research 3
  Other World Civilization (GER 6) 3
  General Elective 3

Semester V Credits

LEST 330 Legal Writing* 3
LEST 350 Litigation 3
LEST 360 Family Law 3
JUST 315 Constitutional Law 3
Program Elective 3

Semester VI Credits

BSAD 319 Professional Ethics 3
LEST 370 Real Property 3
LEST 380 Wills, Estates, and Trusts 3
LEST 449 Advanced Legal Writing 3
  Humanities Elective (GER 7) 3

Semester VII Credits

LEST 429 Orientation to Culminating Experience Legal Studies
(If taking LEST 480 in 8th semester)
  Arts Elective (GER 8) 3
  Program Elective 3
  U/L Program Elective 3
  U/L Program Elective 3
  General Elective 3

Semester VIII Credits

LEST 480
LEST 485
Legal Studies Internship OR
Senior Project OR
U/L Program Electives

* Fulfills writing intensive requirement.

U/L = Upper Level
GER = General Education Requirement

Program Electives: Courses in ACCT, LELM, LEST, BSAD, or JUST. Environmental Law (CONS 388), Legal Issues in E & D (EADM 307), Perpetrators & Victims: Crime and Violence in Literature (ENGL 305), Professional Writing and Communication (ENGL 301), Introduction to Finance, (FSMA 210), Estate Planning (FSMA 410), Legal and Ethical Issues in Health Care (HSMB/NURS 302), and Funeral Service Law (MORT 401).

Note: Legal Studies students must meet all ten General Education Requirements and successfully complete the SUNY Canton Computer Competency requirement.

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