Print Logo
  • Much more than a classroom

    Dept. of History, Philosophy, International Studies and Legal Studies

  • Much more than the past.

    Dept. of History, Philosophy, International Studies and Legal Studies

  • Much more opportunity

    Dept. of History, Philosophy, International Studies and Legal Studies

  • Much more analysis.

    Dept. of History, Philosophy, International Studies and Legal Studies

  • HPIL - Experience
    Dept. of History, Philosophy, International Studies and Legal Studies

Dept. of History, Philosophy, International Studies & Legal Studies
Dr. Scott Davison, Department Chair
Heather McGuire,
Academic Departmental Specialist
354 Rader Hall
Morehead, KY 40351
Phone: 606-783-2655
Fax: 606-783-5096

Follow us on facebook
MSU Home :: Academics :: Legal Studies

Legal Studies

Program Info

The Legal Studies program at MSU is an elite program approved by the American Bar Association (ABA).

Because professional paralegals perform legal work under the direct supervision of licensed attorneys, the program is rigorous in developing the legal knowledge and skills that the profession demands.

Legal Studies students in the major and area of concentration work closely with their attorney-professors to develop their professional skills while performing real work that also makes positive contributions to the MSU service region. Students contribute to a variety of community projects including, staffing pro se divorce clinics, wills clinics, prescription drug program enrollment for seniors, and working with elementary, middle school, and high school students to conduct mock trials.

A minor in Legal Studies is also available.

Choose the Legal Studies Program at Morehead State University BECAUSE:


• Students are prepared upon graduation to immediately enter the career field to perform substantive legal work under the supervision of a licensed attorney.  
• Graduates are successfully employed by attorneys, courts, and government and private agencies located throughout and outside of Kentucky.  
• 90% of Legal Studies students who applied to law school were accepted to one or more LAW SCHOOLS. (MSU’s average acceptance rate is between 76-79%. The national average is between 67-69%).
• A majority of our legal studies students receive scholarships to law schools.
• 100% of our graduates who attend law school agree they were better prepared for law school than most of the other first year law students.


• All Legal Studies professors are licensed practicing Attorneys who have supervised paralegals in their law practice.
• Attorney-Professors are accessible in and outside the classroom.
• Students have face-to-face opportunities to work with actual clients.
• Small class sizes ensure individual attention and skill development.
• Students have access to the latest legal technology.
• Each student is assigned individual Westlaw passwords.
• Students work with law offices, judges, public defenders, county attorneys, and non-profit legal services offices throughout Kentucky in the internship component of the program.
• The Legal Studies program is Approved by the American Bar Association (only 25% of training programs in the country are approved by the ABA).


“Law school has been a whole lot easier because of my excellent preparation at MSU in the Legal Studies Program.”
“I felt [the PLS program] would be good preparation for law school, and it definitely was.”
“Every course was beneficial. . . While most other [law] students spent hours on cases attempting to understand how to pull out the appropriate information, I was moving on to another task.”

-----quotes from Legal Studies graduates


A 22% growth rate is predicted over the years 2006-2016 for paralegals. Many economic factors are responsible for the growth. Paralegals are in great demand and, under the supervision of licensed lawyers, perform some of the necessary legal work of a law firm. Having a paralegal to perform specialized legal work saves clients money and increases profit for the law firm.

EMPLOYMENT OPTIONS with a Legal Studies degree:
Law offices, courts, government (local, state, federal), non-profits, corporations including hospitals, insurance companies, corporate risk assessment departments, trust and collection departments of banks, and businesses.

Note: Kentucky law prohibits paralegals from engaging in the practice of law. Completion of the Legal Studies major and/or receipt of a BA in Legal Studies does not entitle one to practice law or render legal advice, except as provided by law. See: Kentucky Supreme Court Rule 3.700 and Kentucky Revised Statute 524.130.

Dept. of History, Philosophy, Religion, & Legal Studies Main Webpage



Bachelor of Arts - Legal Studies 

Legal Studies

The major is "Approved" by the American Bar Association (ABA).

Paralegals work in private and public interest law offices, federal, state, and local government agencies, and businesses, including the legal department of banks and hospitals, and other corporations.

The paralegal profession is a fast-growing field in which paralegals perform a variety of essential legal tasks under the supervision of licensed lawyers. Paralegals may be involved in client interviewing, drafting of legal documents, researching points of law, litigation support, law office management, and representing clients before administrative agencies as allowed by law. The B.A. degree in Legal Studies provides graduates with the necessary applied and theoretical knowledge to assist lawyers in providing legal services to clients. It combines the advantages of a liberal arts education with the practical skills necessary to provide assistance to attorneys in law offices, corporations, and government agencies.

Note: Paralegal graduates from the program are prohibited from engaging in the practice of law or rendering legal advice except as provided by Kentucky Revised Statutes 534.130.


MSU Admission Requirements

Program Requirements
PLS 210-Introduction to Paralegalism
PLS 321-Legal Research & Writing I
PLS 421-Legal Research & Writing II
PLS 325-Pre-Trial Practice
PLS 425-Trial Practice
PLS 332-Property Law
PLS 334-Torts, Personal Injury Litigation and Insurance Law
PLS 335-Contracts and Uniform Commercial Code
PLS 340-Criminal Law and Procedure
PLS 490-Paralegal Internship
PLS 499C-Senior Paralegal Practice Seminar

6 Credit Hours of Approved Electives 
PLS 333-Family Law
PLS 436-Wills, Trusts, & Estates
PLS 360-Special Legal Topics
PLS 476-Special Problems in Legal Studies

Minor in Legal Studies Requirements 
PLS 321-Legal Research & Writing I
PLS 325-Pretrial Practice
PLS 332-Property Law
PLS 334-Torts
PLS 335-Contracts and the UCC
PLS 340-Criminal Law

Plus six semester hours from the following list (at least one elective course must have a PLS prefix):

PLS 333-Family Law
PLS 436-Wills, Trusts, and Estates
PLS 337-Corporate Law
PLS 360-Special Legal Topics
GOVT 303-Comparative Constitutional Law
GOVT 321-Constitutional Law
GOVT 322-Courts and Civil Liberties
GOVT 324-Environmental Law

24 Total hours for Legal Studies minor

View complete list of Legal Studies courses.

354 Rader Hall 
Morehead State University
Morehead, KY 40351

Primary Phone: 606.783.2720
Fax: 606.783.5096

E-mail: Dr. Dianna Murphy

Mark Haynes
 "As time has gone on, I am ever more convinced that the grounding I received in philosophy has been the single most important element of my schooling. It has helped me to be a more critical examiner of all of the multi-leveled and often cynically conceived stuff that comes my way in Washington; it has helped me to maintain my moral compass; it has helped to give me a perspective and a sense of humor that might not otherwise be there."

--Mark Haynes, President, Concordia Power

© Copyright 2014 Morehead State University - 150 University Blvd. Morehead, KY 40351 • 1.800.585.6781
MSU is an affirmative action, equal opportunity, educational institution.