The course will focus on teaching paralegals about the use of computers in legal organizations. Subjects to be explored include: introduction to computers, computer hardware and software, programs for word processing, spreadsheets and databases, timekeeping and billing programs, case management and docket control, discovery and litigation support, the internet, legal research, and presentation graphics. (3 credits)
Student Learning Outcomes (SLOs)
Students who successfully complete this course will be able to:
- Identify how computers are being used in legal organizations and the ethical considerations which arise in their use.
- Discuss types of storage systems and operating software programs.
- Understand of the ways documents are created and how spreadsheets and databases are used in the legal environment.
- Know how the computerized time and billing system works.
- Have a detailed understanding of calendaring, docketing systems and programs which support litigation.
- Show the ability to locate resources for legal information on the Internet.
- Accurately create simple search queries using WESTLAW or LexisNexis.
- Demonstrate an enhanced level of confidence in using computers and understanding their value in the legal organization.
General Education Outcomes (GEOs)
Course Activities and Grading
Discussions (Weeks 1-7)
Weekly Written Assignments (Weeks 1-7)
Midterm Exam (Week 4)
Final Exam (Week 8)
Available through Charter Oak State College's online bookstore
- Cornick, Matthew S. Using Computers in the Law Office. 8th ed. MBA, Delmar Learning, Clifton Park, N.Y, 2019. ISBN-13: 9781337688963 [Looseleaf version]
- Issues of current interest will be added for consideration by students and a number of websites in addition to those in the textbook will be discussed.
- In addition to standard COSC technology requirements, students should download (at no cost) Adobe Reader. Most internet files on the Internet are in Adobe PDF format and accessible with the Adobe Reader.
|Week||SLOs||Readings and Exercises||Assignments|
Topic: Computers in the Law Office / Word Processing and Document Assembly
Topics: Spreadsheet Software
Topic: Legal Timekeeping and Billing Software
Topics: Databases, Case Management and Docket Control
Topics: The Cloud, Social Media and Electronic Discovery
Topic: Litigation Support Software
Topic: The Internet, Computer-Assisted Legal Research and Electronic Mail
Topics: The Electronic Courtroom, Automated Courtroom and Presentation Graphics
COSC Accessibility Statement
Charter Oak State College encourages students with disabilities, including non-visible disabilities such as chronic diseases, learning disabilities, head injury, attention deficit/hyperactive disorder, or psychiatric disabilities, to discuss appropriate accommodations with the Office of Accessibility Services at OAS@charteroak.edu.
COSC Policies, Course Policies, Academic Support Services and Resources
Students are responsible for knowing all Charter Oak State College (COSC) institutional policies, course-specific policies, procedures, and available academic support services and resources. Please see COSC Policies for COSC institutional policies, and see also specific policies related to this course. See COSC Resources for information regarding available academic support services and resources.