The cost of tuition for a paralegal school in the U.S. will mostly depend on your chosen degree, although it may cost around $6,100 for an associate degree and around $29,000 for a bachelor’s degree.
If you are thinking of saving money, paralegal programs online are a better alternative. The availability of online learning centers makes it easier for people to take on a paralegal course. The Center For Legal Studies shares some helpful insights about this learning option.
Note that the average tuition costs only apply to entry-level jobs. Those who wish to acquire a more senior role should finish a master’s degree in paralegal studies, which will cost you more. When planning a budget, always include the cost of books, food, and other miscellaneous expenses.
The College Board said that independent off-campus students should expect to spend between $15,400 and $23,000 per year, depending on where you live in the country. Housing accounts for 55% of the expenses, while the remainder goes to transportation and other expenses. Paralegals can earn more in some cities, so consider moving to these places if salary is your top reason for continuing your studies.
Paralegals who worked in San Jose and Oxnard, California, earned $75,290 and 71,920 on average in 2016, respectively, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Those in San Francisco earned $74,830, while the average salary amounted to $74,760 in Rockford, Illinois. Washington, D.C.-based paralegals earned a median salary of $70,590.
The federal district may not be the best city, but it offered the highest average salary compared to other states. Salaries often depend on your education, years of experience, and skills. You may have overlapping duties with lawyers and earn less than them.
There are many alternative choices to enroll in a paralegal course that doesn’t require going to a traditional school, yet you can still gain the same level of education. Choose the option that suits you best.