Warning! Students must complete at least two designated Open Access subjects, with a minimum GPA of 4.0, in order to gain admission to the Diploma in Paralegal Studies and continue with the remaining subjects.
Diploma in Paralegal Studies
The professional pathway to a paralegal career
Become a paralegal, legal secretary, or law-related professional. Start with the basics of the Australian legal system and laws. Develop your professional skills including communication and research. Touch on business law and procedure law.
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Upon completion of this course, students will be able to:
- demonstrate knowledge and have an understanding of law's purpose and its application;
- demonstrate an ability to reflect upon and appreciate law's effect on society;
- demonstrate an introductory knowledge of the fundamental areas of law, law's values and principles, and an awareness of Indigenous legal issues;
- demonstrate an awareness of personal and social responsibility through an awareness of ethical issues in a legal context; and
- be accountable for their own learning by being independent and self-directed learners, and personally practising ethical conduct.
This course is a stepping-stone to a variety of professional pathways:
- paralegal, legal secretary or law-related professional working in a law firm or legal practice
- paralegal or legal roles in banking and finance, communications and public relations or corporate governance
- legal roles in court administration, information technology publishing, justice departments, politics and public policymaking.
Open enrolment subjects
To be admitted to the Diploma in Paralegal Studies you need to complete the following subjects and achieve a minimum GPA of 4.00:
- LSU100 Introduction to Legal Studies
- LAW100 Foundations of Law
Grade Point Average (GPA) Requirements
- The 4.00 GPA requirement equates to two passes.
- Be aware that if you fail a subject it is included in your GPA calculation and means you will need to achieve higher grades to obtain admission to the degree.
- For this reason, we recommend students consider their study load and academic skills before attempting a subject.
- For more information on GPA requirements, please refer to the UNE website.
For students who have not studied before
- If you’ve not studied previously, or have been out of study for a while, in your first year we recommend you don’t attempt more than one UNE Law subject per trimester, and consider completing an introductory study subject like APC100, COM10, COM15 and SSK10.
Students who have already successfully completed at least four units of study within an AQF Level 7 qualification of a recognised Australian University or tertiary institution; and who have achieved a minimum grade point average 4.0 and are of good standing with the institution, may apply to enter directly into the UNE Diploma in Paralegal Studies degree.
English Proficiency Requirements
- English is the applicant's first language; or
- Satisfactory completion, within five years of the date of application for admission to UNE, of at least one year of full-time or equivalent full-time study at senior secondary, post-secondary or tertiary level in a country in which English is the primary official language or co-official language and in which English was the sole medium of instruction and assessment for the particular period of study claimed, resulting in an AQF award or an award recognised by the National Office of Overseas Skills Recognition (NOOSR); or
- A pass grade or better in an English language subject at Australian Year 12 level or overseas equivalent; or
- An IELTS (Academic) overall score of at least 6.0 with no sub-band less than 5.5; or equivalent TOEFL score of at least 213 in the computer-based test; or at least 79 in the internet-based test with no less than 22 in the written component; or a PTE Academic minimum overall score of 57 with no skill less than 50; or
- Satisfactory completion of the English for Academic Purposes (EAP) program:
- at the University of New England English Language Centre; or
- an equivalent EAP program at an Australian university NEAS-accredited English Language Centre (subject to certification from the university concerned that satisfactory completion of that university's EAP program would entitle the applicant to be accepted into a comparable award-bearing program at that university); or
- at a non-university NEAS-accredited English Language Provider that has a formal agreement with UNE under which it provides an equivalent EAP Program; or
- a NEAS-accredited TAFE NSW EAP Program.
Students admitted to the degree with prior tertiary studies that satisfy part of the academic requirements of this degree may be eligible for advanced standing. For more information about Advanced Standing or Recognition of Prior Learning, please visit:
The Diploma in Paralegal Studies course provides students with the opportunity to complete a course dedicated to preparatory skills and studies in law, regardless of their educational background.
This course will be attractive to students who would like to graduate with a diploma by completing 8 units. This course also offers students who wish to continue their studies in law the opportunity to transfer to the Bachelor of Legal Studies or to take advantage of the pathway to a law degree (provided they satisfy the GPA requirement). It will also attract those with a general interest in law and those who wish to study particular areas of law in order to be able to work, for example, as a paralegal or legal secretary.
UNE is home to Australia's largest law school outside a capital city, as well as being an early adopter of innovative technology in the delivery of our law programs. With UNE, you will build your preparatory legal knowledge and skills to pursue your unique goals, regardless of your educational background.
Please note: students will only be admitted to the full Diploma in Paralegal Studies upon successful completion of the two open subjects [LSU100 and LAW100] with a minimum grade point average (GPA) of 4.0.
The Diploma in Paralegal Studies aims to graduate students who can demonstrate:
- a knowledge of the fundamentals of the Australian legal system;
- knowledge of areas that include criminal law, dispute resolution, law and first peoples of Australia;
- competence in written communication.
Recommended Study Pattern
Students must complete two of the following Open Access subjects as outlined below and achieve a minimum GPA of 4.0 to gain admission to the degree:
- LSU100 Introduction to Legal Studies*
- LAW100 Foundations of Law
*LSU100 is a prerequisite of LAW100.
Once students complete the Open Enrolment Subjects, apply and are accepted into the degree, they can then enrol in the following:
- 4 Core Subjects
- 2 Listed Subjects from the list provided (as long as they meet the prerequisite requirements).
- Most law subjects will require students to spend at least 15 hours of study per subject per week. That includes time spent online in the Learning Management System (LMS), doing private study and working on assignments. The amount of time needed will vary depending on your existing study skills.
- Law subjects are particularly time-heavy because of the amount of reading that’s required and the type of reading. Reading cases and other types of legal texts will be unfamiliar at first.
- Learning law involves learning new skills, and UNE’s law teachers will help with that, but it does take a commitment of time on your part.
- You need to consider carefully your existing time commitments before enrolling in multiple subjects.
You can apply direct through Open Universities Australia.
Once you've checked your eligibility, apply and enrol for this degree following the steps. This degree also allows you to get started with Open access.
Select “See subjects”
Choose subjects to begin your application. You can choose 1 or 2 subjects to start.
Choose how you want to start
You can apply for the full degree or if you want to start with Open access, enrol into the subjects using the “Single subjects” option.
You can apply for the degree later and the subjects may be credited towards the degree.
Complete your details
Provide your details and select a funding option. You can pay up-front or apply for government funding in your application.
We're here to help answer your questions. Our friendly student advisors provide 7 day support.
This degree offers Open access entry, exclusive to Open Universities Australia.
There’s more than one way to get a degree. Open access allows you to start with single subjects as a way into eligible degrees, regardless of your study history.
Enrol into and complete the required Open access subjects to earn entry in this degree. Most subjects have no entry requirements, are fully government funded (if you’re eligible) and may be credited when you start the degree.
The best part? You can enrol and get started with single subjects now.