Legal Secretary Degrees: Associate's & Online Training Info

About this article
Graduates of a Legal Secretary Associate degree program will be ready to work as a legal secretary or word processor in the legal area within a law office or other legal settings. Graduates will be well versed in legal terminology, legal document preparation, the structure of the courts, applicable computer software and office procedure. Read on to find out more.
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Reasons for Earning a Legal Secretary Associate Degree

Students enrolled in a legal secretary associate degree program acquire the knowledge and skills necessary to assume positions as specialists in legal word processing or a legal secretary. For a student considering a career in law, the legal secretary route may be the way to go. Students will get a basic understanding of the law, and from there can determine if they want to pursue more training to become, for example, a paralegal or lawyer. Legal secretaries also can advance within their own realm. They can assume managerial responsibilities within a law firm.

Would-be legal secretaries would be well-served to find a curriculum that contains or get additional training in LexisNexis. Lawyers and other legal professionals use the information database to research case law and perform background checks. According to the LexisNexis Web site,, the company has a range of databases and services that it provides to, among other industries, the legal profession. Students should note that many job listings for legal secretaries request this skill.

Career Related Information

Legal Secretaries Economic Outlook and Growth of the Industry

Legal secretaries should see a healthy amount of job opportunities in their field. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the field should see average growth (between 9 and 17 percent) through 2014.

Legal Secretaries Salary Information

Legal secretaries earn a modest salary, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics at These professionals average $36,720 annually in compensation. The next step up would be a paralegal, a position that averages, $39,130, according to the bureau. It should be noted that these figures are greatly affected by geography, office size and the applicant's skill level.

Degree Specific

Typical Courses for a Legal Secretary Associate Degree

In order to complete a legal secretary degree program, students will be required to take a variety of courses that will give them the background in business and office procedures applicable to a law setting. A sample curriculum is likely to include classes in:

  • English
  • Business communications
  • Accounting
  • Business Math
  • Administrative management of an office
  • Dictation
  • Transcription
  • Legal terminology
  • Shorthand
  • Procedures in a Legal Office
  • Proofreading/Editing
  • Sociology
  • Psychology
  • Financial accounting
  • Keyboarding
  • Legal Research
  • Computer Science
  • Computer Applications for Business

Skills Obtained in a Legal Secretary Associate Degree

Legal secretaries work with people, documents and files and perform a wide variety of duties in a specialized field. To that end, a typical legal secretary program may instill within the graduate the following skills:

  • Interpersonal skills
  • Critical-thinking skills
  • Decision making skills
  • Communications (written and oral) skills
  • Computer skills
  • Research skills
  • Mathematical skills
  • Organizational skills
  • Legal skills
  • Typing skills
  • Data entry skills
  • Grammar and spelling skills
  • Transcription skills
  • Management and supervisory skills
  • Office procedural skills
  • Shorthand skills
  • Computer application skills

Popular Schools

  • Online Programs Available
    1. Bryant & Stratton College

    Program Options

      • AS - Paralegal Studies
      • AS - Criminal Justice
      • Criminal Justice Studies - AAS
      • Paralegal Studies - AAS
  • Online Programs Available
    2. Keiser University

    Program Options

      • Associate of Arts - Criminal Justice
      • Associate of Arts - Paralegal
  • Marysville, CA

    Yuba College

  • Yakima, WA

    Yakima Valley Community College

  • Walla Walla, WA

    Walla Walla Community College

  • Rio Grande, OH

    University of Rio Grande

  • Lima, OH

    University of Northwestern Ohio

  • Milwaukee, WI

    Milwaukee Area Technical College

  • Warren, OH

    Trumbull Business College

Featured Schools

Bryant & Stratton College

  • AS - Paralegal Studies
  • AS - Criminal Justice
  • Criminal Justice Studies - AAS

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Keiser University

  • Associate of Arts - Criminal Justice
  • Associate of Arts - Paralegal

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Yuba College

Yakima Valley Community College

Walla Walla Community College

University of Rio Grande

University of Northwestern Ohio