38 Online Degree Programs Available in Legal Studies

Why Pursue an Online Degree in Legal Studies?

Individuals who work in the law profession are integral for ensuring legislation is properly enforced and individuals are fairly treated by state and local legal representatives. Whether students prefer to pursue a track that could put them up front and center in the court room or one that may place... them behind the scenes, pursuing an online degree in legal studies may be one of the best ways to help prepare for these careers.

Students interested in achieving a career in this field should consider pursuing an online degree in legal studies, as this certification may prepare learners for a variety of situations they may face while working in these professions. Degree programs can be customized to people's individual interests, and they can introduce learners to topics and courses best suited to increase their knowledge of the law.

A glimpse into the realm of legal studies
Legal studies encompasses myriad topics in the law realm, from those that focus on criminal justice to those tailored to law and public policy. Pursuing this online degree program allows students to get a taste of the various potential topics available. Learners seeking their base-level degree in this field may stick with a general program that introduces them to the vast range of career possibilities. Those pursuing higher-level certifications may opt for a more specialized path - one that allows them to further interact with complex subjects and leading professionals in the field.

For those who want to earn a more advanced degree in legal studies, there are many different options available, depending on the subject area of your choosing. If you're interested in becoming a lawyer, pursuing a master's degree in law may be the best option. Alternatively, if you'd prefer to become a specialist in the field of criminology, a master's degree in this discipline could be ideal.

Possible salaries for a career in legal studies
Salaries for careers in the field of legal studies may vary based on level of education, number of years in the profession and type of organization for which you work, among other factors. Consider the following careers, with data compiled by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2012.

  • Lawyers: 2012 Median annual salary of $113,530 (10 percent projected growth through 2022)[i]

  • Judges and hearing officers: 2012 Median annual salary of $102,980 (1 percent projected growth through 2022)[ii]

  • Sociologists: 2012 Median annual salary of $74,960 (15 percent projected growth through 2022)[iii]

Additional skills required for a career in legal studies
To work in the legal profession, it's essential to stay on top of the ever-changing regulations and legislation that may affect individuals in this industry. If you want to work in a law-based career, you must have a strong interest in learning not only about past cases that affect the current state of law, but also a desire to learn more about new regulations as they arise. For students who wish to pursue a higher-level degree in this field, they must also be driven by their desire to learn more, as they may be required to complete in-depth assignments that require a great deal of research and patience.

[i] bls.gov/ooh/legal/lawyers.htm
[ii] bls.gov/ooh/legal/judges-and-hearing-officers.htm
[iii] bls.gov/ooh/life-physical-and-social-science/sociologists.htm

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