Programs of Study

The Department of Justice Studies strives to provide students with excellence in undergraduate and graduates studies. The 39 or 40 credit interdisciplinary Justice Studies major consists of a required 15 credit core emphasizing the theoretical and applied aspects which are essential background knowledge for all students in the program. It is different from a criminal justice major available at many other academic institutions in New Jersey. The core liberal arts curriculum and field-specific concentrations offer a wider interdisciplinary course of study to meet new professional challenges in the justice and legal systems. In addition, the core is enhanced by a required 24-25 credit applied concentration in one of three areas: International Justice, Justice Systems or Paralegal Studies. A student may also elect to minor in one of four dynamic areas that the department also offers consisting of Criminal Justice, Environmental Justice, Justice & Families, and Paralegal Studies. Students may also pursue the American Bar Association (ABA) approved Post-Baccalaureate Paralegal Studies Certificate. This program is an appropriate course of study for entry level preparation into the legal environment. Please select any discipline below that interests you:

Paralegal Studies Program

The Paralegal Studies Program, approved by the American Bar Association, offers the student a balanced and varied background in theoretical and practical aspects of law which are necessary for work as a paralegal. Paralegals (sometimes referred to as legal assistants or legal analysts) work under the supervision of an attorney, in a variety of areas ranging from real estate, litigation and family law to patent, trademark and estate practice. With the exception of giving legal advice, making court appearances and setting fees, a paralegal may carry out many tasks. Paralegals may not provide legal services directly to the public, except as permitted by law. The program develops intellectual and analytical skills, educates students for direct employment opportunities in the paralegal field, and provides additional career possibilities in combination with another major. The Montclair State University Paralegal Studies Program was the first program at a New Jersey state college or university to receive American Bar Association approval. A Certificate of Completion is awarded to all students who meet program standards, fulfill the 21 credit hours required in the Program and complete a Bachelor's degree. For undergraduate students, this is an academic minor or a concentration within the Justice Studies major. For Post-Baccalaureate students, it is a certificate program.

Paralegal Studies Handbook 2012

Major Concentrations

International Justice Concentration - This concentrated area of study examines issues of criminal justice, social justice, and the law that transcends national borders. The concentration covers transnational and global justice topics including human rights, terrorism, cybercrime, transnational crime, immigration, genocide, war, and human trafficking. It prepares students for careers in law enforcement, international or transnational law, human rights advocacy, government, defense, and security. The program is the only four-year undergraduate degree program of its kind in the State of New Jersey.

Justice Systems Concentration – This concentrated area of study focuses on relationships among law, the justice system and society, with special attention to theories of crime, law enforcement, comparative justice systems and the administration of justice. It prepares students to work in criminal justice, security, agencies administering justice, social services and related settings.

Paralegal Studies Concentration – This concentrated area of study emphasizes both theory and practice in areas such as civil litigation, real estate, criminal law, family law, corporate law and probate. It prepares students to work as paralegals in law firms, corporations and government agencies. This program is the only four-year undergraduate degree Paralegal Studies program in New Jersey approved by the American Bar Association.

Minors

Paralegal Studies Minor (American Bar Association approved) - 21 Credit Hours

Criminal Justice - 18 Credit Hours

Environmental Justice - 18 Credit Hours

Justice & Families Minor - 18 Credit Hours