Online paralegal courses are designed to lead to a credential in paralegal skills. Paralegal courses lend themselves particularly to the online environment because the vast majority of legal work is written work. This means both that relevant courses can be done easily over the computer, and that the coursework by nature hones your writing skills, which is essential to be a good and successful paralegal.

The one thing which cannot be accomplished online, and which is critical to good paralegal skills, is learning how to do a good client interview. So look for a program which augments the traditional online paralegal courses with some form of either in-person, or multi-media client interviewing instruction.

A typical online paralegal course will take six to twelve months to complete, and will include classes in legal research and writing, law office practice and administration, investigation, legal reasoning, and litigation support. Again, writing skills are critical to a career as a paralegal, so be sure to select an online paralegal course which has a strong writing program.

Some of the available online paralegal courses include The Paralegal School at the Washington Online Learning Institute, the Paralegal Studies program at the Kaplan Online College, and the Professional Paralegal Program at the Professional Career Development Institute