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Course Details

Course Details

Course Code: LSTD203 Course ID: 2901 Credit Hours: 3 Level: Undergraduate

This course will examine the practical aspects of criminal law and procedure as they pertain to the work of the paralegal. The course covers the nature of criminal liability, the elements of various crimes, and defenses to criminal accusations. The course will also cover criminal procedure, from search and seizure through trial and appeal. Constitutional issues relating to search and seizure, self-incrimination and other matters are explored in depth. Students learn how to prepare relevant legal documents.

Course Schedule

Registration Dates Course Dates Session Weeks
08/31/20 - 01/29/21 02/01/21 - 03/28/21 Winter 2021 Session I 8 Week session
10/26/20 - 04/02/21 04/05/21 - 05/30/21 Spring 2021 Session B 8 Week session
12/28/20 - 06/04/21 06/07/21 - 08/01/21 Spring 2021 Session D 8 Week session

Current Syllabi

At the conclusion of this course, students will be able to:

1. Describe the Criminal Law System.

2. Define the sources of Criminal Law.

3. Differentiate among the agencies involved in the Criminal Law System.

4. Give examples of the role of the paralegal in the Criminal Law System.

5. Demonstrate the tasks required of the paralegal at each of the procedural steps in a criminal trial.

6. Understand how to perform practical paralegal tasks such as intake, assigning charges, and drafting a Criminal complaint.

7. Explore new and growing areas of crime, such as cybercrime and healthcare fraud.


There are two Supreme Court Essay Assignments, one due at the end of Week 5 and the other due at the end of Week 7. See the Assignment section for more information.

The seven weekly Forums due during the course count as 35% of the final grade.

Questions and topics posed in the Forums are designed to promote thought and insight. Students must provide a critical review of the questions, topics and issues posed and substantively reply to the contributions of at least three peers. Individual postings should include a full discussion of the content of the question posed and explain how it relates to the concepts in the weekly text readings and other resources. The postings should be analytic in nature and include comparisons/contrasts, and examples that can bolster your point. The Forum is for your benefit and it is important to respond to the discussion topic and to engage others in a running dialogue.

Your initial post should be made by Wednesday this week. You should then respond to 3 or more posts. Note that at least one response to your classmates must be made before Sunday. If you make all of your responsive posts on Sunday, you will not earn full points for timeliness.

This can be accomplished by

· Validating with additional evidence from the literature.

· Posing a thoughtful question with commentary which generates further discussion.

· Providing an alternative point-of-view, with evidence and examples.

· Offering additional insight into how the concept might be understood, with evidence provided with real world examples.

You should be active in the classroom throughout the week and actively engaged in the back-and-forth discussion between your colleagues and the professor.

The forum grading rubric can be found in gradebook by clicking on the forum entry.

Use the Blue Book format for all citations. Example, for cases: York v. Smith , 65 U.S. 294 (1995). Blue Book citation format is required all citations in this course (including citations of the textbook). For further information see various Resources in the classroom concerning proper Blue Book citation format or contact your instructor. Failure to give proper attribution to sources and failure to adhere to property citation format will result in point loss and may also result in referral for disciplinary action for violation of the University’s Plagiarism Policy.


The midterm and final exams will be taken open book and witih unlimited time. The exams will be posted in the electronic classroom under “exams”. These exams will be a mix of multiple choice, true/false, short answer, and essays.

NameGrade %
Forum Introduction 1.00 %
Forum Week 1 - Introduction 1.00 %
Forums 34.00 %
Forum Week 1, #2 5.67 %
Forum Week 2 5.67 %
Forum Week 3 5.67 %
Forum Week 5 5.67 %
Forum Week 6 5.67 %
Forum Week 7 5.67 %
Written Assignments 15.00 %
Week 5 - Supreme Court essay 1 7.50 %
Week 7 - Supreme Court Essay 2 7.50 %
Midterm Exam 25.00 %
Midterm Examination 25.00 %
Final Exam 25.00 %
Final Examination 25.00 %
Book Title: Bluebook: Uniform System of Citation, 20th ed. - - e-book available online, please visit to locate the course eReserve.
Author: Harvard, Columbia Law Review
Publication Info: Harvard, Columbia Law Review
ISBN: 9780692400197
Book Title: Criminal Law, 11th ed. - e-book available in the APUS Online Library; link also provided in the classroom Lessons section
Author: Pollock
Publication Info: Routledge
ISBN: 9780323353977

Book Title:Bluebook: Uniform System of Citation, 20th ed. - - e-book available online, please visit to locate the course eReserve.
Publication Info:Harvard, Columbia Law Review
Author:Harvard, Columbia Law Review
Unit Cost:$41.30
Book Title:Criminal Law, 11th ed. - e-book available in the APUS Online Library; link also provided in the classroom Lessons section
Publication Info:Routledge
Unit Cost:$102.16

Previous Syllabi

Not current for future courses.