3 Benefits of a BCI Paralegal Certificate: Including NALA Qualifications

In the current technology-driven era, adults young and old tremendously rely on Distance Education providers and materials to receive knowledge, education and training. Most college, high school, and graduate students are involved in some format of distance education through the duration of their experience, according to the DEAC. Blackstone Career Institute is among the oldest distance education provider, beginning back in 1890 with students of the law.

BCI’s Legal Assistant/Paralegal program is a certificate program that prepares the student for entry-level work in the chosen field. This, among these following other reasons, are the large benefits of choosing Blackstone Career Institute to further your Paralegal career

Career Gain

After the completion of Blackstone’s Paralegal program, there are additional exams your certificate would qualify you for. These further certifying exams are an optional next step in reaching your career goals based on the 915 clock hours earned in the completion of the program. In order to sit for further exams, such as the NALA or the NALS, there is a requirement of a completed 900 clock hours of coursework.

NALA stands for the National Association of Legal Assistants and offers the Certified Legal Assistant/Certified Paralegal (CLA/CP) exam. Once passing this particular exam, this results in the authority and credibility for you to be able to use the CLA/CP initials after your name. For example, a signature would look as follows: Jane Doe, CLA.

Certification is not mandatory, but it does show potential employers that you have met this distinguished level of achievement.  This is a very difficult exam and you may consider purchasing a study guide offered by NALA or taking a CLA prep course.  You can contact NALA to ask for more information concerning certification and membership here.

The Accredited Legal Professional (ALP) exam and/or the Professional Paralegal (PP) certification, given by NALS is another exam graduates of Blackstone’s Paralegal program will be eligible for.

The full title for NALS is “NALS…the association for Legal Professionals.”  NALS has two certifications for legal secretaries and a “Professional Paralegal” certification.  In order to sit for the Professional Paralegal certification exam, applicants must have five years of experience as a paralegal/legal assistant, although they may waive some of the five years based on education and other certifications held.  You may contact NALS for more information concerning membership and certification exams here.


Professional Gain

As mentioned before, Blackstone Career Institute is accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission, a nationally recognized accrediting agency. “Accreditation assures the student that the institution operates on a sound financial basis, has an approved program of study, qualified instructors, adequate facilities and equipment, and approved recruitment and admissions policies” – Sally R. Welch, M.A. Retired Assistant Director of the Council. By adding your certificate from Blackstone Career Institute into a resume or cover letter, this will raise the standard of qualifications, training, and knowledge you have. Any clients will be assured as well when their attorney is partnering with a paralegal who earned their certificate from an accredited school. Certification from an accredited institute, such as Blackstone Career Institute, does not secure job placement but it does increase your likelihood and your qualifications to apply to a variety of jobs.

Personal Gain

Completion of a certificate program from a Distance Education provider takes a fair amount of self-discipline & dedication, two attractive qualities that can be applied in your professional life along with your personal life. No matter your plans after receiving certification, you have now gained the tools and knowledge to succeed.

When learning how to become a paralegal, your career could take you into a corporate legal department handling employee benefits and contracts, or have you performing necessary regulatory research and analysis. Or, you could work for a small law firm, using your knowledge of all aspects of law, or a large law firm where you will specialize in areas such as criminal law or real estate law. The choice is up to you and your personal preferences! Organizations that employ paralegals include:


  • Banks; Savings and Loans
  • Construction Companies
  • Corporate Legal Departments
  • Court Reporting Agencies
  • Federal and State Banking Agencies
  • Insurance Companies
  • Internal Revenue Service
  • Law Firms
  • Legal Aid Societies
  • Municipal, Trial, and Appellate Courts
  • Private Investigators
  • Sheriff’s Department
  • Title Companies
  • Union


Blackstone Career Institute

From all the benefits of earning your Paralegal certificate from an accredited Distance Education provider, such as Blackstone Career Institute, you have gained a timeless, invaluable resource that can be carried with you through life. At any stage of life, investing in your education prepares you with professional level knowledge, industry insight, and skills that open doors to pen doors, to better opportunities. Take your next step today.