Are Online Paralegal Degrees the Way to Go?
Compare online paralegal degrees to their traditional counterparts and decide which one works best for you.
Weighing Your Decision
If you ask around you may get a mixed reaction on the value of online paralegal degree programs. For some people, doing their paralegal training online is both a step toward achieving their career goals and a convenient way to get their education—without having to drop out of the rest of their lives. For others, online paralegal training just doesn't live up to the promise—whether because they found the online delivery method hard to deal with or they found it hard to maintain the motivation to get stuff done with such a flexible format.
Will an online paralegal degree be the answer for you—or an endless source of frustration? See how you stack up against the checklist below to get a better idea of whether online paralegal training will work for you.
Online May Be Good for You If...
- You're ready for self-directed study. The most publicized perk of an online paralegal degree program is the flexibility you'll have to complete your work on your own schedule. But this can be both a blessing and a curse. If you're a busy parent or working full-time, when you finally get a moment to yourself, how often do you think, "I'd really like to do some homework"? While this no doubt applies to anyone balancing paralegal training with a busy life, for some people, going to an actual classroom and having a structured schedule might give them some added accountability and motivation.
- You meet the technology requirements for online paralegal training. Do you have everything you need to meet the technology requirement for an online paralegal degree program? It may depend on the specific online platform your school uses. A reliable Internet connection and computer are essential. However, there may be more to consider. For instance, some Mac users report having trouble with their online school's platform. Before you enroll, make sure you understand the technology requirements at your chosen school.
- You're comfortable with primarily online interaction. It's not just a question of being familiar with a variety of online communication methods. It's whether you're the kind of person who is comfortable with having online communication as your primary method of interaction with teachers and classmates. One common criticism of online paralegal degree programs is that you'll be isolated from others. This doesn't have to be true. You may actually have just as much access to teachers and fellow students as in a classroom setting—sometimes even more. But it is all online, so make sure that's not a deal-breaker for you.
- You have the right environment for online study. Minimizing distractions can be key to succeeding in an online paralegal degree program. Setting up a special area of your home for school work and establishing a routine for study times can be a helpful strategy to keep you focused and on-track. If you know that you'll have to face a constant barrage of interruptions despite your best efforts and intentions—maybe getting your paralegal training in a classroom setting will actually allow you to shut out the noise for a while.
The Ultimate Decision
If you're not ready to commit to a full-scale online paralegal degree programs, why not get your feet wet by taking a couple of online paralegal classes and see how they go? After all, isn't success in your paralegal training program ultimately more important than convenience?
On the other hand, if you are ready to jump into an online paralegal degree, keep your expectations realistic. It's important to get as much information about what you're getting into so that you'll be prepared for any potential problems and frustrations before they arise. If you can make online study work for you, there's not a more flexible or convenient way to get your paralegal training.
- Facts About Paralegal Education
- Choosing a Paralegal Program
- Which Degree Is Right for You?
- Paralegal Certificates
- Paralegal Studies
- Paralegal Courses
- Paralegal Degree Online
- Top 10 Reasons for Online Training
- Compare Traditional and Online Degrees
- Paralegal Accreditation
More Paralegal Information
Online Degree Guide
Online programs offer a great education alternative for criminal justice students.