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Degree Overview: Associate of Science (A.S.) Degree in Legal Administrative Assistant

Majors Overview December 15, 2013

Usually, an Associate of Science (A.S.) degree program for legal executive assistant is referred to as a legal administrative assistant program. Associate degree program graduates will be prepared for an executive secretary or legal administrative assistant career.

A.S. Programs in Legal Administrative Assistant

Students enrolled in a two-year legal administrative assistant program become adept at preparing legal documents and performing legal research. They can expect to hone the research and communication skills necessary in rendering assistance to legal professionals and attorneys. Students are educated in computer applications employed in office settings and administrative office skills, in addition to business etiquette and customer service. Admission criteria typically require applicants to hold a GED certificate or high school diploma.

Coursework

Coursework is augmented by participation in internships to gain practical experience in the legal field. General education courses are augmented by legal administrative assistant courses such as:

•Legal research and writing
•Machine transcription
•Office administration
•Business law
•Records management
•Administrative procedures

Career Choices

A job growth rate of 11% has been predicted for administrative assistants and secretaries with better-than-average job growth likely to be enjoyed by professionals employed in the legal field (source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). Those who successfully complete the legal executive assistant program can seek entry-level jobs in government offices, legal firms, and corporations. They can choose from various career titles such as:

•Legal secretary
•Legal administrative assistant
•Executive administrative assistant

Continuing Education Choices

Those who graduate from the legal executive assistant program may want to join the workforce immediately on completion of the program or opt for continued education by earning a bachelor’s degree in order to become paralegals. Associate degree program graduates may also seek paralegal training after they have gained adequate work experience in the industry.

They may also benefit by volunteering for certification in the field that would help them showcase their skills and knowledge to potential employers. The Professional Legal Secretary (PLS) and the Accredited Legal Secretary (ALS) certification are offered by the NALS. Additionally, the Certified Legal Secretary Specialist (CLSS) credential is offered by the Legal Secretaries International, Inc. that would be particularly beneficial for those who have undergone training to augment five years of work experience in the legal field.

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