May 30, 2020  
2017-2018 Undergraduate Catalog 
2017-2018 Undergraduate Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Legal Studies, (B.P.S.)

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In the Legal Studies Program, students acquire the knowledge and skills required to provide substantive legal services under the supervision of an attorney. Only licensed attorneys are permitted to practice law. However, they maximize efficiency and productivity by adding qualified paralegals and legal assistants to their support staff. Not only are paralegals integral to law firms, but their unique skill sets are becoming increasingly vital to corporations, government agencies, state and federal courts, law enforcement, health care organizations, non-profits, educational institutions, and a wide range of other professional settings.

The program offers a Bachelor of Professional Studies degree (BPS) with a concentration in Legal Studies. The core curriculum emphasizes four correlated disciplines: (1) theory, process, application, and ethics of law; (2) research and investigation; (3) law-related technologies, and (4) professional decorum and communication skills. The program is designed to equip students for employment as essential support staff for licensed attorneys. It is also provides an excellent academic foundation for students aspiring to later attend law school.

General Education (35-41 hours)

See Graduation from the University  for the University General Education Program requirements. Students who have completed one year of American History in high school are exempted from the six credit-hour History General Education Program requirement; otherwise, students will have to meet the History requirement.

Coordinated Study (Major) (54 hours)

No more than 15 hours of the Legal Studies Professional Core may be satisfied through transfer credit.


* Students must complete LEGL 2400 , LEGL 2410 , and LEGL 3150  with a grade of C- or better before enrolling in any upper division (3000-4000 level) LEGL courses.

** A permit is required to enroll in UNIV 4110 - Internship . The program coordinator approves internships and issues permits. In order to be eligible, students must have earned (1) ninety credit-hours and (2) a grade of C- or better in both LEGL 3150 - Legal Research/Writing I  and LEGL 4150 - Legal Research Writing II . The internship requires students to perform 150 clock-hours of substantive legal work within a professional legal environment. Although the academic advisors and the program coordinator are available to assist however possible, it is each student’s responsibility to find, apply for, and secure his/her own internship prior to seeking a permit for UNIV 4110 . Students cannot transfer credit for internships from other schools or programs unless the student and the internship both meet UM’s Legal Internship standards, as determined by the program coordinator. For more information and related forms and documents, please visit


* Mock trial is a specialty course offered by the Political Science Department. It is limited to students who audition and are selected for the UM Mock Trial team, which sometimes travels for regional competitions. Eligible students may take the course twice for a total of six credit hours, but only in consecutive semesters (fall and then spring). For more information on permits, auditions, requirements, and offerings, please contact the Political Science Department or visit

Interdisciplinary Electives (12 hours)

Legal Studies students must also take at least 12 hours (four classes) of Interdisciplinary Electives. This course group is meant to offer students the freedom to shape their own learning experience while still adhering to a central theme of modern legal systems in society.

Students seeking to enroll in courses outside of University College must obtain the appropriate permits from the department offering the course. Note that all upper-division courses offered by the Fogelman College of Business and Economics require a permit (3000 or 4000-level ACCT, ECON, FIR, MGMT, MKTG). To request a permit for courses at Fogelman College, please visit Many upper-division courses in other departments also have prerequisites or permit restrictions. Students are responsible for knowing and satisfying all course requirements prior to enrollment. For specific information about course descriptions and prerequisites, please see the Undergraduate Catalog, which is available online at

*Legal Studies Students may receive degree credit for either LEGL 3485 - Real Estate Practices  or FIR 4310 - Real Estate Law , but not both.

University College Requirements

Thematic Studies (6 hours)

Senior Project (3 hours)


May be chosen to bring the total number of hours to 120 with a minimum of 42 upper-division hours.

Experiential Learning Credit

Students may be granted credit for college-level knowledge related to their major area of study that they have gained from work experience, life experience, or non-college instruction. Students who would like an assessment of such learning must prepare a portfolio that describes and documents their learning experience. Portfolios are assessed by faculty who teach in the students’ field of study.

Assessment by Portfolio is reserved for knowledge and competencies that do not readily fit into the Credit by Examination procedures. For more information please visit the Experiential Learning website at

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