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For work­ing adults and oth­er non­tra­di­tion­al stu­dents who are pay­ing their own way through col­lege, find­ing an afford­able bach­e­lor degree in legal stud­ies can make the dif­fer­ence between get­ting the school­ing they need, and being held back in their career. With­out the bur­den of stu­dent loans and debt, you can move for­ward in your career faster and get ahead. That’s why afford­able legal stud­ies bachelor’s pro­grams are so cru­cial to pro­fes­sion­als in para­le­gal, law enforce­ment, gov­ern­ment, and more.

Whether you’re start­ing with a low-cost com­mu­ni­ty col­lege degree, choos­ing a small­er, region­al pub­lic col­lege, or jump­ing into an afford­able online degree, there are options for get­ting a bachelor’s in legal stud­ies that won’t break the bank. Bachelor’s Degree Cen­ter has round­ed up 10 of the best.

To rank the most afford­able legal stud­ies bachelor’s degrees, the edi­tors at BDC focus on val­ue. Pro­grams are pre­sent­ed in order of tuition rate, using cur­rent IPEDS num­bers. Only accred­it­ed, rep­utable insti­tu­tions are featured.

1. East Central University

East Cen­tral Uni­ver­si­ty offers an afford­able bach­e­lor’s degree in legal stud­ies to stu­dents who want to explore career options in the legal or judi­cial fields. Stu­dents learn how to per­form research and gath­er infor­ma­tion (or evi­dence) that can be effec­tive­ly used in legal pro­ceed­ings. A legal stud­ies degree can pro­vide stu­dents with the foun­da­tion they need to move for­ward with their careers. A BS in legal stud­ies can give a stu­dent the boost they need to apply for and get the job they want the most.

East Cen­tral Uni­ver­si­ty strives to both edu­cate and empow­er each stu­dent with the high­est qual­i­ty degree pro­grams avail­able. The uni­ver­si­ty gives stu­dents the skills and resources they need to trans­form the world around them. The goal for fac­ul­ty and staff is to make sure every stu­dent they encounter leaves the school ful­ly pre­pared to take on the duties of their cho­sen career.

What We Like: By pro­vid­ing stu­dents the abil­i­ty to find pos­i­tive solu­tions to many legal sit­u­a­tions, the ulti­mate goal is to make the world a bet­ter place for every­one involved.

Degree: BS in Legal Studies

East Cen­tral University

2. St Petersburg College

St. Peters­burg Col­lege pro­vides stu­dents with an afford­able bach­e­lor’s degree in legal stud­ies. A degree in legal stud­ies pro­vides valu­able skills that a bud­ding law pro­fes­sion­al can rely on to help them suc­ceed. Stu­dents will learn how to cre­ate files, uncov­er infor­ma­tion, and draft legal briefs. They are giv­en the abil­i­ty to han­dle many of the tasks a para­le­gal or oth­er legal assis­tant may be required to per­form. With a BS in Para­le­gal Stud­ies, stu­dents who com­plete the pro­gram will be able to receive their para­le­gal cer­ti­fi­ca­tion and move for­ward with their careers.

St. Peters­burg Col­lege offers Bach­e­lor’s in Para­le­gal Stud­ies degree pro­grams that have been approved of by the Amer­i­can Bar Asso­ci­a­tion. This means that stu­dents who attend the col­lege are guar­an­teed to receive an edu­ca­tion that they can be proud of when they begin to look for a job as a paralegal.

What We Like: In addi­tion to offer­ing the high­est lev­el of aca­d­e­m­ic excel­lence, the col­lege only hires fac­ul­ty mem­bers who are con­sum­mate pro­fes­sion­als in their field. All this comes togeth­er to pro­vide stu­dents with a top-of-the-line education.

Degree: BAS in Para­le­gal Studies

St. Peters­burg College

3. New York City College of Technology (City Tech)

New York City Col­lege of Tech­nol­o­gy (City Tech) pro­vides stu­dents with an afford­able bach­e­lor’s degree in legal stud­ies. Stu­dents are able to earn a vari­ety of skills they can use in many dif­fer­ent career paths. This includes orga­ni­za­tion, draft­ing legal doc­u­ments, and inves­ti­gat­ing var­i­ous sce­nar­ios to col­lect valu­able infor­ma­tion that can be used while the attor­ney con­tin­ues to build their cas­es. With a BS in Legal Assis­tant Stud­ies, a stu­dent can take what they learn and be able to suc­cess­ful­ly find employ­ment as a para­le­gal or legal assistant.

New York City Col­lege of Tech­nol­o­gy (City Tech) has been pro­vid­ing stu­dents with the high­est qual­i­ty edu­ca­tion pos­si­ble for the last 75 years. Back when the col­lege was found­ed, the goal was to pro­vide an edu­ca­tion to young GIs who were return­ing from World War II.

What We Like: The qual­i­ty cur­ricu­lum and pro­fes­sion­al staff are com­mit­ted to car­ry­ing on that lega­cy only now the mis­sion is to pro­vide an edu­ca­tion to any­one who needs or wants it.

Degree: BS Legal Assis­tant Studies

New York City Col­lege of Technology

4. John F Kennedy University

John F. Kennedy Uni­ver­si­ty pro­vides an afford­able bach­e­lor’s degree in legal stud­ies. All of the legal degree pro­grams are approved by the Amer­i­can Bar Asso­ci­a­tion and offer stu­dents the aca­d­e­m­ic excel­lence they deserve. They are taught a vari­ety of skills they will need as a para­le­gal or legal assis­tant. Earn­ing a BA in legal stud­ies is the best way to advance their career and gain the knowl­edge and expe­ri­ence they will need to be suc­cess­ful in what­ev­er role they assume.

John F. Kennedy Uni­ver­si­ty is relo­cat­ing its pro­grams and fac­ul­ty to North­cen­tral Uni­ver­si­ty. Both uni­ver­si­ties are com­mit­ted to pro­vid­ing each stu­dent with degree pro­grams that meet or exceed the stan­dards of the Amer­i­can Bar Asso­ci­a­tion. Even though the uni­ver­si­ty is relo­cat­ing, its core val­ues, mis­sion, and expe­ri­enced fac­ul­ty mem­bers will all remain in place to car­ry on the school’s long-stand­ing traditions.

What We Like: The goal of pro­vid­ing the best law degree pro­grams avail­able will always be at the heart of the school.

Degree: BA in Legal Studies

John F. Kennedy University

5. Missouri Western State University

Mis­souri West­ern State Uni­ver­si­ty offers an afford­able bach­e­lor’s degree in legal stud­ies for stu­dents who are inter­est­ed in estab­lish­ing a career in the field of law. Stu­dents are able to gain the skills they will require to be com­pet­i­tive in a legal office or court sys­tem that requires them to per­form a range of legal tasks. This includes draft­ing legal briefs, inves­ti­gat­ing spe­cif­ic events, and orga­niz­ing infor­ma­tion so that it can be effec­tive­ly used in a case. With a BS in Crim­i­nal Jus­tice – Legal Stud­ies, a stu­dent can be con­fi­dent in their abil­i­ty to succeed.

Mis­souri West­ern State Uni­ver­si­ty has a diverse stu­dent base with peo­ple com­ing from all over the world to learn from some of the best fac­ul­ty and staff in the coun­try. The degree pro­grams are of the high­est qual­i­ty and pro­vide stu­dents with the most up-to-date infor­ma­tion possible.

What We Like: Every stu­dent who grad­u­ates from the uni­ver­si­ty knows they will have the com­pet­i­tive edge they need to suc­ceed in what­ev­er job they choose to accept.

Degree: BS in Crim­i­nal Jus­tice — Legal Studies

Mis­souri West­ern State University

6. Mississippi University For Women

Mis­sis­sip­pi Uni­ver­si­ty for Women offers an afford­able bach­e­lor’s degree in legal stud­ies for stu­dents who are inter­est­ed in pur­su­ing a career as a para­le­gal or legal assis­tant. Every degree offers the nec­es­sary skills the stu­dent will need to suc­ceed in what­ev­er career path they decide to fol­low. From inves­tiga­tive research to draft­ing legal doc­u­ments and build­ing case files, the stu­dent will have the sup­port they need to thrive in any type of legal envi­ron­ment. With a BA or BS in Legal Stud­ies, the stu­dent is on the fast track to success.

Mis­sis­sip­pi Uni­ver­si­ty for Women offers legal degree pro­grams that are approved by the Amer­i­can Bar Asso­ci­a­tion. Every degree pro­gram is eval­u­at­ed on a reg­u­lar basis to ensure the lev­el of aca­d­e­m­ic excel­lence that is expect­ed by the ABA.

What We Like: Fac­ul­ty mem­bers pro­vide more than just infor­ma­tion and skills. They offer sup­port, encour­age­ment, and guid­ance to stu­dents who may face chal­lenges and obsta­cles as they move for­ward toward graduation.

Degree: BA or BS in Legal Studies

Mis­sis­sip­pi University

7. Clayton State University

Clay­ton State Uni­ver­si­ty pro­vides stu­dents an afford­able bach­e­lor’s degree in legal stud­ies. This degree pro­vides all of the nec­es­sary skills that will be required of a para­le­gal or legal assis­tant. Earn­ing this degree also opens the door to many dif­fer­ent job oppor­tu­ni­ties with­in the legal or judi­cial fields. Stu­dents can choose to work in dif­fer­ent envi­ron­ments, includ­ing law firms, judi­cial courts, and in any oth­er type of legal envi­ron­ment where a BS in legal stud­ies will be beneficial.

The legal pro­grams offered by Clay­ton State Uni­ver­si­ty are approved by the Amer­i­can Bar Asso­ci­a­tion and offer all of the require­ments for grad­u­ates to become cer­ti­fied as a para­le­gal or legal assis­tant. Every degree pro­gram and instruc­tor are cho­sen because they offer the high­est qual­i­ty edu­ca­tion to each student.

What We Like: After grad­u­a­tion, stu­dents are able to explore new oppor­tu­ni­ties and chal­lenges at every turn, all with the guid­ance and sup­port of each fac­ul­ty member.

Degree: BS in Legal Studies

Clay­ton State University

8. Indiana University-Purdue University-Indianapolis

Indi­ana Uni­ver­si­ty-Pur­due Uni­ver­si­ty-Indi­anapo­lis gives stu­dents a chance to earn an afford­able Bach­e­lor’s degree in Legal Stud­ies so they can advance quick­ly in their legal careers. With the skills a stu­dent learns with this type of degree pro­gram, they will be able to han­dle any task that is pre­sent­ed to them as part of their reg­u­lar duties. Earn­ing a BA in Para­le­gal Stud­ies is the best way to gain the knowl­edge and expe­ri­ence a stu­dent will need to be suc­cess­ful no mat­ter what career path they choose to take.

IUPUI is one of the coun­try’s most well-respect­ed schools of high­er learn­ing. By bring­ing togeth­er two of the most well-known schools in the coun­try, IUPUI offers legal pro­grams that are sec­ond to none. Fac­ul­ty and staff mem­bers are cho­sen based on expe­ri­ence and their abil­i­ty to effec­tive­ly teach each lesson.

What We Like: At IUPUI, stu­dents not only gain a full under­stand­ing of the law and its process­es, the insights and per­spec­tive they receive from their instruc­tors take them over and above the bar many lawyers expect their para­le­gals to meet.

Degree: BA in Para­le­gal Studies

Indi­ana University

9. Morehead State University

More­head State Uni­ver­si­ty pro­vides an afford­able bach­e­lor’s degree in legal stud­ies to stu­dents who have a pas­sion for the law. A bach­e­lor’s degree pro­gram lays the foun­da­tion for future expe­ri­ence and the pos­si­bil­i­ty of return­ing to school to com­plete their edu­ca­tion. The more skills the stu­dent receives, the more like­ly they are to move for­ward with their career at a much faster pace. With a BA in Legal Stud­ies, stu­dents are able to take advan­tage of almost any employ­ment oppor­tu­ni­ty they are pre­sent­ed with.

More­head State Uni­ver­si­ty offers a com­pre­hen­sive list of degree pro­grams for stu­dents who are inter­est­ed in crim­i­nal jus­tice or legal stud­ies. No mat­ter what path they choose, fac­ul­ty and staff will always have the answers the stu­dents will need to con­tin­ue to fol­low their career path.

What We Like: Stu­dents can look to their men­tors and aca­d­e­m­ic advi­sors to pro­vide the guid­ance they need when it comes to choos­ing a degree pro­gram that will help them reach their goals.

Degree: BA in Legal Studies

More­head State University

10. Texas A&M University-Commerce

Texas A&M Uni­ver­si­ty-Com­merce gives each stu­dent a chance to enroll in an afford­able bach­e­lor’s degree in legal stud­ies. With the skills they learn from these degree pro­grams, grad­u­ates are able to pick and choose the career path they are most pas­sion­ate about. Every stu­dent has a chance to excel using the train­ing they receive at the uni­ver­si­ty. By earn­ing a BA or BS in Para­le­gal Stud­ies, stu­dents are guar­an­teed to have what they will need to be a valu­able asset to what­ev­er firm or office they choose to work in.

Texas A&M Uni­ver­si­ty-Com­merce offers degree pro­grams in legal stud­ies that are approved by the Amer­i­can Bar Asso­ci­a­tion. Every degree pro­gram goes under review on a reg­u­lar basis to ensure that stu­dents are get­ting the best pos­si­ble edu­ca­tion. Fac­ul­ty mem­bers are also held to the high­est stan­dards when it comes to expe­ri­ence and teach­ing abilities.

What We Like: Once a stu­dent grad­u­ates from the uni­ver­si­ty, they are able to take on any chal­lenge and sur­pass the expec­ta­tions of their employer.

Degree: BA or BS in Para­le­gal Studies

Texas A&M University-Commerce

If you are look­ing for a cheap legal stud­ies degree, the first place to look is at a com­mu­ni­ty col­lege or oth­er small col­lege that is well-known for offer­ing qual­i­ty degree pro­grams for an afford­able price. A cheap legal stud­ies degree from the right school is a good way to get start­ed with your edu­ca­tion. An afford­able legal stud­ies degree can still be valu­able, espe­cial­ly if you are enrolled in an online pro­gram that allows you to con­tin­ue to work while you attend class. Small­er schools may be able to offer online, afford­able legal stud­ies degrees at a low­er price.

You can also save mon­ey on a cheap legal stud­ies degree by apply­ing for schol­ar­ships and grants. Many schools offer schol­ar­ships to stu­dents who have met the grade qual­i­fi­ca­tions or are enrolled in a spe­cif­ic degree pro­gram. In addi­tion to schol­ar­ships that are offered by the school, you may also qual­i­fy for schol­ar­ships that are offered by local non-prof­it orga­ni­za­tions. Ath­let­ic and aca­d­e­m­ic schol­ar­ships are often­times the eas­i­est way to get the cost of your degree pro­gram lowered.

Anoth­er option for stu­dents to con­sid­er is apply­ing for a grant. Grants are offered by orga­ni­za­tions or com­pa­nies who are look­ing to help a stu­dent achieve a high­er pur­pose. Grants often remain in place for mul­ti­ple semes­ters or years. Grants are also nor­mal­ly for much larg­er amounts as well. Both grants and schol­ar­ships can be used for all of your edu­ca­tion­al expens­es, rang­ing from school sup­plies to tuition. In some cas­es, it may also cov­er room and board as well.

Crim­i­nal jus­tice degrees and legal stud­ies are quite sim­i­lar. Many crim­i­nal jus­tice degree pro­grams will include spe­cial­iza­tions for legal stud­ies and oth­er types of law cours­es. In most cas­es, how­ev­er, those who pur­sue a crim­i­nal jus­tice degree pro­gram often do so to fur­ther their career in law enforce­ment. Spe­cial­iz­ing in legal stud­ies may help them inter­pret the law much bet­ter and assist them in per­form­ing their duties. Crim­i­nal jus­tice spe­cial­iza­tions can also include foren­sics, inves­ti­ga­tions, and orga­ni­za­tion­al skills.

Stu­dents who choose to enroll in an online legal stud­ies degree pro­gram are often on their way to a career in the legal field. Some may go on to be attor­neys or para­le­gals. Oth­ers may choose to go into pol­i­tics or to assist in the judi­cial field as a researcher or assis­tant to the pros­e­cut­ing attor­ney or pub­lic defend­ers. Work­ing in the legal field may also mean work­ing as a legal con­sul­tant or con­tract spe­cial­ist in a finan­cial institution.

Earn­ing a legal stud­ies spe­cial­iza­tion along with a crim­i­nal jus­tice degree will allow you to find work in either field. It will allow you to explore oppor­tu­ni­ties in both law enforce­ment and the legal or judi­cial fields. By hav­ing the best of both degree pro­grams at your dis­pos­al, you will be able to take on more respon­si­bil­i­ties and become more valu­able to your employ­ers. You will also be able to accept new oppor­tu­ni­ties in either field as they become available.

A grad­u­ate with lit­tle expe­ri­ence (less than a year) may be able to make $35,000 to $45,000 per year sim­ply by pro­vid­ing their tran­scripts and diplo­ma. Indi­vid­u­als with 10 to 20 years may be able to earn between $45,000 and $62,000. These are not the only fac­tors that need to be tak­en into con­sid­er­a­tion, how­ev­er. While expe­ri­ence is extreme­ly impor­tant, it is not the only thing that employ­ers look at. Wages are also based on an appli­can­t’s edu­ca­tion, the areas of exper­tise, and also where they live.

If you have been employed in your cur­rent posi­tion for less than two or three years, you may want to con­sid­er return­ing to school to com­plete your edu­ca­tion. Many legal stud­ies degree pro­grams also offer access to intern­ships or men­tor­ships where the stu­dent can go to work in a legal office and receive on-the-job train­ing. They may be able to remain at the job through­out the remain­der of the year, giv­ing them an oppor­tu­ni­ty to build last­ing rela­tion­ships with those they work with. You will gain valu­able expe­ri­ence and build a strong network.

Whether you choose to work in law enforce­ment or as a legal assis­tant or para­le­gal, your earn­ing poten­tial will vary great­ly due to dif­fer­ent fac­tors. Under­stand­ing those fac­tors will allow you to max­i­mize your earn­ing poten­tial and make the most of every career oppor­tu­ni­ty that comes your way.

Relat­ed Rankings:

25 Best Bach­e­lor’s in Legal Studies

15 Best Online Bach­e­lor’s in Legal Studies

10 Fastest Online Bach­e­lor’s in Legal Studies