9 Best Paralegal Schools in Chicago, IL

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that there will be an additional 14,800 new paralegal jobs by 2032.

Paralegals who work in Illinois earn an average salary that is higher than the national average salary for paralegals.

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Many paralegals who work in Chicago earn a salary that is higher than the state average.

It is one reason that people who want a career in the legal profession are likely to choose to attend one of the best paralegal schools in Chicago.

The state of Illinois does not require paralegals to have a specific degree.

Completing a paralegal program is likely to give paralegal job candidates an edge over their peers.

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1 Harold Washington College

Harold Washington College is one of two schools that offers an Associate of Applied Science Paralegal program through the City Colleges of Chicago.

The 60-credit hour program prepares graduates to become well-trained paralegals in any sector where paralegals perform their duties.

Some examples include working at private law offices, at law firms, and for corporate entities.

The American Bar Association (ABA) approved the Paralegal Associate in Applied Science program.

The college is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, North Central Association.

Courses Offered

The courses in the Paralegal Associate of Applied Science program prepare students to work under the supervision of an attorney.

Students gain knowledge from classroom courses and from hands-on experiences.

The curriculum includes the course Introduction to Paralegal Studies.

Students gain basic knowledge, skills, and concepts that are related to a paralegal career.

They learn about reasoning, responsibilities, and the limitations of paralegals.

Students complete courses such as Civil Litigation, Family Law, and Legal Research and Writing.

Elective courses include Criminal Law for the Paralegal, Immigration Law, and Elder Law.

Contact Information

2 Wilbur Wright College

Wilbur Wright College is the second school that is part of the City Colleges of Chicago.

The Associate in Applied Science Paralegal program is a 60-credit hour program.

Students gain the skills to become highly trained paralegals through both coursework and hands-on opportunities.

The Higher Learning Commission accredits the school.

The program is approved by the American Bar Association (ABA).

Courses Offered

The course Intro to Paralegal Studies provides an overview of the American legal system.

Students learn the basic concepts and reasoning skills that are required for a paralegal career.

Some other required courses include Legal Research and Writing, Real Estate Law for the Paralegal, and Family Law.

Students choose their electives from options such as Wills, Trusts, and Probate, Environmental Law for the Paralegal, and Internship for the Paralegal.

Contact Information

  • Address: 4300 N. Narragansett Ave., Chicago, IL., 60634
  • Phone: 773-777-7900
  • Website: Visit School Website

3 Loyola University Chicago

Loyola University Chicago offers an online Certificate in Paralegal Studies program for students who already hold a bachelor’s degree.

Students choose from four specialty certificate options.

The options include Litigation Practice, Litigation and Corporate Practice, Corporate Practice, or Customized Certificate.

Students may complete the program in less than one year.

The program is approved by the American Bar Association.

It is offered on a full-time or part-time basis.

Courses Offered

Some courses offered in the program depend on the specialty that students pursue.

Two of the courses include Introduction to Paralegal Studies and Legal Research and Writing.

Students who choose the Litigation Practice certificate take courses such as Civil Litigation, and Litigation Technology and eDiscovery.

The Litigation and Corporate Practice certificate includes the courses Business Organizations, and Contract Administration and Analysis.

The Corporate Practice certificate includes courses such as Secured Transactions and Bankruptcy, and Litigation Topics for Corporate Paralegals.

Students who pursue the Paralegal Studies Customized Certificate complete courses in legal research, legal ethics, and technology.

Contact Information

  • Address: 820 N. Michigan Ave., Lewis Towers Suite 1200, Chicago, IL., 60611
  • Phone: 312-915-7900
  • Website: Visit School Website

4 Loyola University Chicago

The Paralegal Studies Bachelor of Arts program at Loyola University Chicago is geared towards students who hold an associate degree in paralegal studies.

Students may complete the program online or in person at the Water Tower Campus.

The American Bar Association approves the program, which also includes an embedded Dual Litigation & Corporate Practice Certificate.

Courses Offered

Students take the courses Advanced Topics in American Law, and Advanced Legal Analysis and Writing.

The courses provide students with the knowledge of the rationale for court decisions and case precedent.

The program also includes courses such as Civil Litigation, Law Office Computer Applications, and Legal Ethics.

Students complete a capstone project.

Contact Information

  • Address: 1032 W. Sheridan Rd., Chicago, IL., 60660
  • Phone: 773-274-3000
  • Website: Visit School Website

5 Roosevelt University

The Bachelor of Arts in Paralegal Studies program at Roosevelt University prepares students to work in a role that is an essential part of legal teams.

The school has been educating paralegals for more than four decades.

Students who complete the program earn both a bachelor’s degree and a paralegal certificate.

Gain additional knowledge and skills by earning the Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Paralegal Studies.

Courses Offered

The paralegal studies program begins with courses that provide students with a basic understanding of law.

Students also receive an introduction to the legal profession.

Some of the required courses include Legal Research, Legal Technology, and Advanced Litigation and e-Discovery.

Elective courses include Intellectual Property and Bankruptcy Law.

Students also complete an internship.

The Post-Baccalaureate in Paralegal Studies Certificate program courses include Civil Law, Ethics and Professionalism, and other courses in the 24-credit program.

Contact Information

  • Address: 430 S. Michigan Ave., Chicago, IL., 60605
  • Phone: 312-341-3500
  • Website: Visit School Website

6 Generations College

Generations College has been educating students to become paralegals since 1973.

The school’s Associate of Science in Paralegal Studies program is the oldest two-year paralegal studies program in Illinois.

The school is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, North Central Association of Colleges and Schools.

The program is approved by the American Bar Association.

Program graduates understand legal terminology and legal procedures.

They know how to perform legal research, how to draft legal documents, and how to interact with clients.

Courses Offered

Students enrolled in the paralegal program complete 62 credit hours of study.

Some required courses include Introduction to Paralegal Studies, Criminal Law and Procedures, Civil Litigation and Procedures, and Estates and Trusts.

Program graduates are prepared to sit for paralegal certification exams.

Contact Information

  • Address: 29 East Madison St., 2nd Floor, Chicago, IL., 60602
  • Phone: 312-922-4286
  • Website: Visit School Website

7 DePaul University

Depaul University offers a 17-week Paralegal Studies Certificate program through the school’s Continuing and Professional Education department.

The curriculum for the program was created by paralegals.

Students complete coursework and work a hypothetical case.

They work the hypothetical case from the demand letter to the pre-trial resolution to gain experience.

Courses Offered

The curriculum includes courses that provide students with knowledge and skills that are related to legal terminology, document preparation, Illinois court processes, and evidence and investigation.

Students also learn about tort law, contract law, pleadings and discovery, and trial practice.

Contact Information

  • Address: 1 E. Jackson Blvd., Chicago, IL., 60604
  • Phone: 312-362-8000
  • Website: Visit School Website

8 Chicago State University

Chicago State University offers an online Certified Paralegal program through ED2Go.

Students complete the 225 course hours program in 12 months.

The self-paced program has open enrollment. Students receive membership in the National Association of Legal Assistants (NALA) and access to the NALA Certified Paralegal Exam Review course.

Courses Offered

The program courses prepare graduates to sit for the Certified Paralegal exam offered by the National Association of Legal Assistants.

Some required courses include The Paralegal in the Legal System, Regulations of Paralegals, Interviewing in a Law Office, and Litigation Case Management.

Students also complete a capstone project.

Contact Information

  • Address: 9501 S. King Drive - Jacoby Dickens Athletic Center Room 201, Continuing Education and Nontraditional Degree Programs, Chicago, Il., 60628
  • Phone: 855-520-6806
  • Website: Visit School Website

9 South Suburban College

South Suburban College indicates that its Paralegal/Legal Assistant programs are the only programs in the South Suburban Chicago area that are approved by the American Bar Association (ABA).

The school offers a Paralegal/Legal Assistant Associate of Applied Science program. It also offers a Paralegal/Legal Assistant Certificate program.

The certificate program is for students who hold an associate of science degree or a bachelor’s degree from an accredited post-secondary institution.

Courses Offered

Students begin their associate degree studies by completing courses such as Fundamentals of Paralegalism and Introduction to Business Law.

They also take other courses, which include Law Office Technology, Evidence and Investigation, and Litigation.

The certificate program courses include Legal Research and Writing, Intermediate Business Law, and Law Office Technology.

Students also complete an internship.

Contact Information

  • Address: 15800 South State St., South Holland, IL., 60473
  • Phone: 708-596-2000
  • Website: Visit School Website

Schools Summary Table

Rank School
#1 Harold Washington College
#2 Wilbur Wright College
#3 Loyola University Chicago
#4 Loyola University Chicago
#5 Roosevelt University
#6 Generations College
#7 DePaul University
#8 Chicago State University
#9 South Suburban College

Paralegal Salary Information

The average salary for paralegals in the state of Illinois, as of February 2024, is $69,844.

Paralegals who work in Chicago often earn a salary that is well above the state average and above the national average salary for paralegals, which is $67,974.

The site salary.com indicates that the average salary for paralegals in Chicago, as of February 26, 2024, is $71,706.

Annual Salary Range:
Item Percent

Average Salary in Chicago, IL

City Name Salary
Chicago $71,706

Chelsea Wilson

About Chelsea Wilson

Chelsea Wilson is the Community Relations Manager for Washington University School of Law’s distance learning LLM degree program, which provides foreign trained attorneys with the opportunity to earn a Master of Laws degree from a top-tier American university from anywhere in the world.

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