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Legal Studies, Bachelor of Science

126 Credits
College of Professional Studies
Queens Campus, Staten Island Campus


Students with a passion to work in the area of civil rights litigation, federal or state prosecution or defense and government agencies will find the American Bar Association approved Legal Studies Program as a source of needed knowledge and skills. Students who successfully complete the 126-credit program will receive a Bachelor of Science degree from the College of Professional Studies, St. John's University. Legal assistants and paralegals may not provide legal services directly to the public, except as permitted by law.

Students in the Legal Studies program, with faculty assistance, have obtained internships in Federal and State Courts, the District Attorney's Office, Queens Volunteer Legal Services, St John's Law School Securities Arbitration Clinic and private law offices. Students are provided with access to online law libraries such as Westlaw and WestNext and, in the context of certain course work, to the law library in St. John's School of Law. The Legal Studies Advisory Board includes a law school professor, a federal district judge, attorneys and legal assistants.

Graduates have obtained positions in government agencies, court systems, private and non-profit organizations and law firms. Although the Legal Studies Program is not a "pre-law" program and American law schools do not require any particular major field of study for admission, historically graduates have been accepted at major accredited law schools, including NYU, George Washington, Emory, Fordham, Hofstra, Brooklyn and St. John's.


For more information about admission to this and other acclaimed undergraduate programs at St. John’s University, please visit Undergraduate Admission online. Or contact us directly at the campus of your choice:

Admission Office - Queens Campus

Admission Office -  Staten Island campus


Career Outcomes

Students explore the legal, ethical, practical and theoretical foundations of the law. After completing the Legal Studies program student should be able to:

  • Conduct factual and legal research and write summaries reporting on his or her findings.
  • Understand basic legal principles and locate relevant legal precedent as a preliminary to the legal advice to be rendered by an admitted attorney.
  • Organize and manage document reviews, demonstrative exhibits and perform other trial preparation tasks.
  • Draft for review and use by an admitted attorney contracts, real estate closing documents, pleadings and correspondence.

Students explore the legal, ethical, and constitutional foundations of the field and learn managerial, organizational, research and writing skills. Among other things, students learn the following methodologies:

  • The American judicial system and its constituent components.
  • Identification of interrelationships among cases, statutes, regulations and other legal authorities.
  • The ability to read, evaluate and analyze sources of law and apply them to related issues.
  • The ability to prepare, read and interpret basic documents used by the legal profession and government agencies.

Legal assistants and paralegals may not provide legal services directly to the public, except as permitted by law.

Additional Information

Students majoring in Legal Studies at St. John's learn from nationally and internationally respected scholar-practitioners with extensive professional experience and connections at all levels in the legal profession.

Thanks to the connections of our faculty, hundreds of for-credit internship opportunities are available for eligible juniors and seniors. These internships offer insight into the inner workings of some of the world’s top government agencies, while allowing students to develop skills and gain experience that greatly increase their marketability in today’s competitive job market.

Students gain an academic and professional edge by joining any of the more than 180 student clubs, organizations and honor societies at St. John's, including these:

  • Legal Society: Offers guest speakers, publications and presentations by alumni leaders in the law enforcement field.
  • Criminal Justice Association: Brings students into contact with the structures and procedures of the criminal justice system and provides information about career opportunities and job availability.
  • Lambda Epsilon Chi: National honor society for Legal Studies majors.
  • The College of Professional Studies Honor Society: Recognizing undergraduates who demonstrate academic excellence and involvement in campus, church or community activities. 
  • Alpha Phi Sigma: The Alpha Epsilon Rho Chapter of this criminal justice honor society.
  • Mock Trial: The team consistently achieves top national rankings in the annual intercollegiate Mock Trial Tournaments. “Trials” simulate genuine courtroom conditions, with a jury and actual judges presiding. Students perform as attorneys and witnesses.

All St. John's students benefit from the University's many outstanding facilities and resources. Computer laboratories contain sophisticated PC and Mac workstations with a full range of the latest academic software packages.

High-tech classrooms and lecture halls feature sophisticated multimedia equipment. Lounges and quiet study areas enhance the research experience in our 1.7 million-volume University Library. The 127,000-square-foot D’Angelo Center, the new University and Student Center, features high-tech classrooms, lecture halls, a Starbucks Café, full service food court as well as lounges and study areas.

Students take advantage of St. John’s location in dynamic New York City. Our faculty and Career Center have strong ties to employers and other professional and educational resources throughout the New York area. Students make New York their classroom through innovative courses like Discover New York.

In addition, the Legal Studies Programs partake within the university Pre-Law Advisement program.