Ontario College Diploma in Paralegal Curriculum
Accepting Applications for January 2019
Courses and Descriptions
Communications I is an introductory course that provides a foundation in college-level communications by teaching students to read critically, write appropriately for a variety of audiences, conduct and cite research, and revise for clarity and correctness. In seminars and labs, students will engage in both independent and collaborative activities, including the development of a digital portfolio designed to help them become more effective communicators in academic and professional environments.
This course provides an introduction to the democratic system of governance in Canada. It includes a description of the organization, structure, interaction, and administration of the three (3) levels of government. The course will introduce and identify the daily problems and issues faced by Canadians in a political context, including public opinion and special interest groups. Major themes explored include a brief introduction to political beliefs and values, an examination of cleavages within the Canadian population, the Canadian constitution, nationalism, and political culture and spectrum. These concepts will be examined in the current forum of the daily politics that unfold during the course. Students will begin to develop research writing skills and group discussion skills. Students must complete one hour of self-directed learning per week to successfully complete this course.
This course provides an introductory overview of the Canadian Justice System. Special emphasis is placed on the criminal, civil and administrative justice systems. The role and responsibilities of Paralegals and Law Clerks in each system will be emphasized. Contemporary issues affecting the systems will be analysed and discussed. Topics covered will include but not be limited to: an introduction to the nature of the law, the legal system, the court system, the legal profession and legal ethics, the Canadian Constitution, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, statutory interpretation, the role of the common law.
This course provides a broad overview of sociology and how it can help us understand everyday life. Thinking sociologically involves challenging common assumptions about our world and seeing the connections between our individual experiences and the larger social context in which they occur. In so doing, we recognize our role in creating the social world, how it affects who we are and how we live, and our potential to change it. Students must complete one hour of self-directed learning per week to successfully complete this course.
Working in the Windows 7 environment, this computer course introduces the student to computer basics (computer terminology, e-mail, file management) and the application and use of word processing, spreadsheet, and presentation software using Microsoft Office 2016. Through the extensive use of hands-on activities, students will gain sufficient knowledge and experience to make productive use of computers as a tool in the college and workplace environments.
This introductory course develops a set of generic skills, that support studies at a post-secondary level and provide a foundation for the student's career success.
This course is an introduction to the study of Indigenous (First Nations, Metis, and Inuit) peoples in Canada. Students will explore the complex historical and contemporary relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. The course will also guide students to begin to understand the diversity and depth of Indigenous societies, worldviews, and knowledge through a multi-disciplinary lens.
This course offers a systematic approach to exploring human behaviour. The concepts and empirical findings are examined using a variety of theoretical approaches. Major topics include perception, motivation, learning, memory, intelligence, and personality.
This is an introductory course in accounting. The course explores the basics of accounting using an interactive and tactile approach. Accounting topics will consider transactions relating to personal, business and corporate accounts. Special emphasis will be given to trust accounts, cash control and bank reconciliations. Topics will be discussed within the context of the legal environment. The accounting will be supplemented with a simulation using P.C. Law Jr.
Business people and consumers in Ontario are affected by a broad spectrum of federal, provincial and municipal laws and a variety of court-created legal principles. This course serves as an introduction to business and consumer law.
This course introduces the student to the litigation process. Emphasis is on both criminal and civil proceedings with an emphasis on minor criminal matters and tort cases. The student will learn how to assess a potential litigation matter and learn how to apply the principles taught in taking a litigation case from inception to completion.
This course will provide a practical introduction to legal research, using case reports, statutes, regulations, and legal texts. Effective communication of research results will be developed through practice writing case briefs, statutory summaries, report letters, and legal memoranda.
A solid understanding of Property Law Concepts is integral as it forms the basis for many other areas of law. In this course, students will be introduced to the various forms of property ownership in Ontario and the legal restrictions on property rights. They will also study the most important pieces of legislation affecting real property in Ontario. This course is not designed to provide the student with skills related to title searching or property transfers.
The fundamentals of MS Word, PC Law, will be applied to a variety of documents commonly used in a legal office environment. While the course focuses on an introduction to word processing concepts, legal documents such as legal correspondence and memorandum, court documents and other documentation will form the basis of the content. Students will also be provided with access and content information related to legal documentation web sites.
In this course students will critically identify and examine issues in diversity. Specifically, students will focus on topics pertaining to inequality in various social settings, including but not limited to: race, gender, ethnicity, and sexual orientation. Incorporating social/legal explanations of diversity, students will develop a clear understanding of the impacted groups and possible strategies of community empowerment.
This course provides an introduction to the concepts of trial advocacy in the Canadian judicial system. Students will develop the basic skills and techniques necessary for the effective presentation of a client's case in the adversarial system of justice. There will be four presentation assignments, to provide a hands-on opportunity to practise and demonstrate an understanding of the skills and concepts of the course. The course will include an attendance at the County Court House to observe an actual trial.
Alternative Dispute Resolution is increasingly becoming an integral part of our judicial system as an alternative to litigation. In this course, students will learn principles of mediation and arbitration both in a voluntary context and in situations where it is mandated by law. Students will study the objectives and practice of Alternative Dispute Resolution and the context in which they are most effective.
This course provides an overview of basic criminal law concepts with an emphasis on summary conviction offences. A detailed study of procedural steps and tactics of importance to the defence of accused persons will also be discussed.
In this course, students will examine the use of evidence in court cases, including statutory and common-law limits on the use of various forms of information that could affect the decision-making process of Canadian courts and administrative tribunals. Students will examine the functions of investigators, advocates, judges, and juries in the presentation and processing of evidence.
This course is intended assist students with seeking and preparing for their field placement experience in fourth semester. Students will increase the knowledge, insight, and understanding of their options for placement within the legal environment. Emphasis will be given to cover letter, resume and portfolio preparation. The student will be also introduced to interview skills.
This is an introductory course to Small Claims Court, a part of the Superior Court of Justice that deals with monetary jurisdiction up to $25,000. In this course, students will explore the role of the LSUC Rules & Procedures related to the Paralegal/client relationship. Students will develop an understanding of how civil procedures apply to Small Claims Court and the relevant rules. Students will develop an understanding of the commencement and defence of proceeding, rules regarding pleadings, the ability to draft pleadings/motions/offers to settle and serve documents within the required time lines. Students will develop an understanding of pre-trial conferences and costs.
This course examines landlord and tenant relations, rent review, and the procedures involved in protecting and enforcing the rights of both landlords and tenants.
This course introduces the student to routines and procedures most often performed in the legal office setting. Emphasis will be given to opening/closing/preparing client files, file retention, legal record keeping, docketing, billing, and statements of accounts. There will be instruction in alphabetic, numeric, subject and geographic filing as well as file management both manually and electronically. The student is also introduced to telephone and reception techniques, handling incoming and outgoing mail including email and faxes. The student will have the opportunity to continue to use their written and oral communication skills while drafting, editing and processing communications typically found in the legal setting.
Court and Tribunal Agents are permitted to represent clients before a number of income security tribunals. In this course, students will acquire a working knowledge of the legislation and the tribunals that regulate workplace safety and workers' compensation principles as well as income security programs such as the Canada Pension Plan and Social Benefits.
The fourth semester field placement experience enables Paralegal students to integrate and complement their classroom knowledge with a practical learning experience in a legal setting of their choice. Paralegal placement consists of 160 hours. It is viewed as an integral, core coponent of the program's curriculum.
- Introduction to Canadian Justice for Legal Professions (LAWS 245)
- Accounting in the Legal Environment (ACCT 45)
- Business and Contract Law in the Legal Profession (LAWS 207)
- Introduction to Litigation (LAWS 45)
- Legal Research and Writing (LAWS 53)
- Property Law Concepts in Ontario (LAWS 47)
- Word Processing in the Legal Environment (COMP 99)
Ontario's employer-employee relationships are controlled, not only by contract principles, but by an array of specialized legislation and tribunal decision-making. Students in this course will acquire a working knowledge of the laws and tribunals which set employment standards, workplace safety and worker's compensation principles and the parameters of collective bargaining. Special emphasis will be placed on the impact of human rights legislation on the employment sphere.
In this course, students will study the procedural framework through which individuals gain admission to Canada as immigrants, visitors, temporary workers and students. Particular emphasis is on the main areas of immigration policy and procedure.
It is crucial for the protection of the public that a Paralegal understand their professional obligation to their clients. In this course students will explore professional conduct issues and areas of authorized practice, specifically addressing Ontario's changing legal environment and the current restrictions on the work that a Paralegal may perform. Particular emphasis will be placed on the legal and ethical obligations of the agent to the client within the context of a Paralegal's practice.
Paralegals are permitted by law to appear on behalf of clients in provincial offences court and in criminal court on summary conviction matters. In this course, students will be introduced to the legal issues related to provincial offences and summary conviction offences and the procedures by which they are resolved. Particular attention will be paid to the Provincial Offences Act, the Highway Traffic Act, and the relevant sections of the Criminal Code of Canada. Students will examine the elements and defences to charges under these pieces of legislation, as well as the procedure involved in both prosecuting and defending a charge.
This course presents a fundamental approach to managing a paralegal practice in the Canadian business environment. It is designed to develop an understanding of planning the start-up of a business, the ongoing management and strategies for growth. Students develop an understanding of the legal forms of business ownership, the importance of financial analysis as a success indicator for the business and the appropriate marketing tactics for promoting small business. The student progresses to the development of an actual Business Plan. Emphasis will be on real world examples of paralegal start-ups with input from paralegals who have undertaken the process of starting up a paralegal practice.
Small Claims Court is part of the Superior Court of Justice that deals with monetary jurisdiction up to $25,000. In this course, students will explore the role of the Small Claims Court in the administration of justice on Ontario. Emphasis will be placed on the Rules of the Small Claims Court and the relevant sections of the Court of Justice Act. Students will learn the appropriate procedure used to present and defend claims and to enforce orders in the Small Claims Court. Students will also develop the skills necessary for trial preparation and presentation of an action.
This course provides an introduction to the concepts of practice as well as the basic skills and techniques needed to advocate for clients before tribunals. Ths students will be exposed to the administrative law system in Canada and in particular Ontario. Learners will become familiar with the Statutory Powers Procedure Act, the governing legislation for administrative tribunals in Ontario. The student will also be presented with information about specific tribunals where paralegals may represent a client, including the enabling legislation and rules of practice specific to those tribunals.