All but one of the schools in Pittsburgh that offer paralegal programs are for-profit institutions. Based on distinctions, school type and student population, the following college is considered a top Pittsburgh school for paralegal studies:
- Winner: Community College of Allegheny County is the only public school and the largest in terms of enrollment that provides paralegal programs in Pittsburgh. The college awards a paralegal certificate and an associate's degree.
School Info Chart
|Category||Community College of Allegheny County|
|Distinctions||16th largest multi-campus community college in the U.S. and largest educational institution in western Pennsylvania*|
|School Type||2-year, public|
|Tuition & Fees (2013-2014)||Undergrad: $3,540 (in district); $6,792 (in state); $9,784 (out-of-state)**|
|Paralegal Programs Offered||Certificate and associate's degree|
|Paralegal Certificates and Degrees Awarded in 2012-2013||43**|
|Most Popular Paralegal Award in 2012-2013||Associate's degree (25 awarded)**|
|Undergraduate Graduation Rate (in 150% of normal degree time) for 2010 Entering Class||9%**|
|Noteworthy||Accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education*|
Sources: *Community College of Allegheny County; **NCES College Navigator
Community College of Allegheny County
- Co-op opportunities available
- Paralegal studies offer on-campus and online learning formats
With six neighborhood centers, four campuses and online learning options, the Community College of Allegheny County offers over 170 programs to more than 18,000 students each year. The college's paralegal studies program falls under its business programs.
The Paralegal Certificate program teaches students to develop materials related to litigation for use in a court of law. They are taught ways to uncover and analyze information pertinent to current cases before preparing professional documentation for use in court. Major coursework features the study of criminal justice procedures, evidence evaluation, real estate, legal research and the U.S. Constitution, among other topics. Students also choose 15 credits of coursework from a list of electives. The program takes two semesters to complete.
Besides the same paralegal courses as found in the certificate program, the Paralegal Associate of Science program requires major coursework in trusts and estates, litigation and advanced researching and writing. In addition, one must take nine elective credits. Electives can include business law, consumer protection, criminal justice, family law and juvenile justice.