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Legal Studies

Rice University's legal studies offerings are ideal for career changers and those seeking to enhance their current skillset in the legal field. From comprehensive training to pursue a paralegal career to specialty on-demand offerings, become a well-rounded asset for any firm or corporate legal department.

Two women hug in auditorium upon receiving certificates

Rice-trained paralegals are in demand. From a comprehensive preparation program to enter into the legal field as a highly trained paralegal professional, to on-demand, topic-specific offerings, Rice University has courses to make you an essential member of any legal team.

The paralegal certificate program is the only program in Houston that requires a bachelor's degree, and participants work with high-caliber students and instructors and attend regularly scheduled classes with live instruction and access to interactive, online study tools that include practice exercise questions, lecture notes, quizzes and mock exams. In 2017 Rice University was ranked as a top 10 online program in the United States. You can complete this certificate in five months.

Our on-demand short courses cover topics to broaden your skills and knowledge for already established paralegals or those seeking to enter a specific sector in the legal field.


Corporations and Business Organization for Paralegals

This Business Law course covers basic business organizations and corporate law. It is designed for paralegals and provides reference for the training and practicing professional in the realm of business organizations.

Criminal Law for Paralegals

This course provides a realistic, hands-on guide to the practice of criminal law. The on-demand course offers a highly practical introduction to the field, exploring essential legal principles and their applications through a series of real-world cases, including prosecution, defense, and appellate processes. Learn about criminal law from all angles, including prosecutorial and defense-oriented issues.

eDiscovery for Paralegals

E-Discovery is the process of recovering data stored on computers, hard drives, external drives, servers, archival floppy disks and other digital storage for use as evidence or information related to a legal proceeding. It is one of the hottest topics for paralegals and lawyers. Developing skills in this evolving pre-trial process will make any paralegal more valuable to a firm.

Family Law for Paralegals

This family law course provides a concise introduction to key legal concepts and practical paralegal skills, along with excerpts from real-world cases, forms and checklists you can apply on the job, and tips and techniques for professional success.

Health Care Law for Paralegals

This course provides essential information necessary for students pursuing careers in the growing health care sector, as paralegals, managers, or compliance/ethics professionals. The program focuses on key information such as the types of health care entities, and the laws and ethics that govern them, and discusses the major areas of health care law, including regulatory research and administrative law review.

Immigration Law for Paralegals

This course takes into account all of the changes made in immigration law since September 11, 2001. The course is designed for those with experience and for those who have no formal knowledge of the law. Immigration is primarily dealt with by administrative agency laws as opposed to the courts. As such, a paralegal may be extensively used to advocate on behalf of those seeking to resolve immigration-related issues.

Paralegal Graduate Certificate Program

The Paralegal Graduate Certificate program, taught by practicing attorneys, is skills-based, offered in an online format this fall and includes career search support. This certificate can be completed in five months. 

Real Estate Law for Paralegals

Paralegals are used extensively by law firms practicing in real estate law. As a document-intensive areal of law, paralegal are often used to create or identify appropriate forms, applications, titles of deed, create legal documents related to liens and evictions, as well as prepare financial documents related to a client’s real estate. This course provides a set of foundational skills in all of these areas, and more, offering consistent coverage of both substantive and procedural law.