Is there any open courseware available for online paralegal courses?
Students taking legal assisting classes online can supplement their education with open courseware from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), which offers several courses in law. “Law and Society” explores the nature of law and its relationship to economic, political and social processes.
MIT’s “Introduction to Copyright Law” discusses how copyright law applies to music, computers, broadcasting, DVDs and software. This is an essential course for paralegal training online, as many paralegals will work in intellectual property law.
Princeton University offers a course on intellectual property as well. “Rip, Mix, Burn, Sue” is a video lecture that focuses on the legal issues of digital media and the challenges facing the application of law when information is so easily shared today.
Case Western Reserve University provides a collection of lectures from 2000 to 2012. One lecture that students studying for paralegal degrees online may find of particular interest is “Closing the Gap: Differences between Male and Female Communication Styles in the Legal Profession”, which addresses why the paralegal field is female-dominated while 68% of lawyers are male. The course is offered as a webcast with supplemental readings available on the website.
“Environmental Law and Policy” from University of California, Berkeley is a video lecture that discusses the basics of environmental law and its applications.
What blogs or other online resources might be useful in my paralegal courses?
The Paralegal Knowledge Institute (PKI) will help you with the tools and techniques needed to solve today’s paralegal challenges. PKI’s resources include magazines and books, webinars and courses that will allow you to supplement the education provided in your paralegal classes online.
The Estrin Report is a blog for professional paralegals of all levels and specialties. The blog is run by accomplished author and editor, Chere Estrin, and features a wide range of topics including paralegal certification, education, salary surveys, career advice and much more. Even if you are taking some of the best online paralegal classes available, this blog can provide you with additional information.
Sinclair Community College offers an online database of paralegal resources such as websites, listings of paralegal jobs, books, articles and other media as well as a news wire.
Ivy Tech Community College provides library resources for paralegals including links to journals, books, videos covering criminal law topics and a LexisNexis tutorial. LexisNexis is 1 of the 2 largest legal research tools in the world, so students in online legal assisting courses should take advantage of the opportunity to learn how it is used.
The Legal Talk Network hosts a wide variety of podcasts that highlight key issues within the profession. They partner with West LegalEdcenter to offer podcasts for continuing legal education (CLE) credit online, which is required for paralegals to maintain their licensing over time.
A Paralegal’s Journey to Lawyerhood discusses the author’s experience in realizing his desire to attend law school and become a lawyer. If you are taking the paralegal classes and contemplating law school, this blog can help you prepare for the next step.
What magazines or journals can I read while I study in my offline or online paralegal classes?
Those studying for accredited online paralegal degrees will want to read the ABA Journal, the journal of the American Bar Association (ABA), which covers all aspects of legal affairs. Students in traditional programs and the top paralegal courses online approved by the ABA will discover many informative articles both in the journal and on its website.
Know, a Magazine for Paralegals is an e-magazine written by top legal experts and covers careers, trends, substantive topics, human interest stories and much more.
The Harvard Law Review is a student-run journal designed as a research tool for practicing lawyers and students, so those in paralegal online courses and conventional classes should familiarize themselves with it. It is 1 of the most respected law journals in the United States.
The North Carolina Journal of Law and Technology is another student-run publication that covers a wide spectrum of law as it relates to technology, a term broadly defined by the journal that includes intellectual property and environmental law.
The Texas Journal of Oil, Gas, and Energy Law, a student-run journal from University of Texas School of Law, focuses on law as it applies specifically to energy. Students in online paralegal courses interested in environmental law and the looming energy crisis will find this journal a valuable read.