Academic Integrity and Student Conduct

Students at our Paralegal Institute are expected to conduct themselves in a manner consistent with the high standards of professionalism to which lawyers themselves must adhere under the Model Rules of Professional Responsibility. Our Institute reserves the right to dismiss any student for falsification of admissions information, or dishonesty involving class assignments or exams, theft or damage of property.

Students are reminded that in the conduct of their business and academic affairs at the Institute, even the appearance of impropriety is to be avoided. Students who fail in any regard to conduct themselves in a manner consistent with these statements may be dismissed.

Academic Standards

You must maintain a cumulative grade point average of 2.5 in all course work in order to be eligible for graduation. If a student's cumulative grade index falls below 2.5 at the end of the first or second term, he or she will be placed on academic probation. Students on probation are expected to achieve at least a 2.5 average the following term, or be subject to possible dismissal. Students must complete the certificate in no more than five (5) years. Students who exceed this requirement must re-apply through the Admissions Committee.

Grading System

A (4.00) 94-100
A- (3.75) 90-93
B+ (3.25) 87-89
B (3.00) 83-86
B- (2.75) 80-82
C+ (2.25) 75-79
C (2.0) 70-74
D (1.0) 60-69
F (0.0) 0-59

Course credits graded Incomplete or Withdrawal do not earn CEUs and if required for program completion, must be repeated and passed. Students receiving an incomplete ("I") grade have six (6) weeks (three (3) weeks for the summer session) from the original due date to complete course requirements. After that time the "I" will be changed to an "F".

Attendance Policy

Since the course materials are of a technical and intensive nature, students are required to attend all classes. Students must inform their instructor if they will be unable to attend a particular class. Class attendance is outlined in the Student Academic Bulletin.

Audited Course Policy

Courses may be audited. However, audited courses are not eligible to be converted to matriculated units. Auditors must declare at registration that the course it being taken for audit and pay the full-course tuition.


You may begin the program in any of the four terms, fall, winter, spring, or summer. Once admitted, students can expect to hear from the Program Director about class registration.

Students seeking funding or needing to defer loans should refer to the chart below to determine their enrollment status.

Undergraduate Units (Have earned less than a bachelor's degree)

# of Months Half-time Three-quarter-time Full-time
1 6 9 12
2 6 9 12
3 6 9 12

Graduate Units (Have earned a bachelor's degree or higher)

# of Months Half-time Three-quarter-time Full-time
1 4.5 6.5 9
2 4.5 6.5 9
3 4.5 6.5 9

Refund Policy

100% Prior to the beginning of the first week of class
80% Prior to beginning of the second week of class
40% Prior to beginning of the third week of class
20% Prior to beginning of the fourth week of class
0% After the fourth week of class

TOEFL Language Standards for International Students

English language ability must meet or exceed a TOEFL examination score of 90, with a score in all subsections of 20 or higher for listening, speaking, writing and reading. International applicants must successfully complete an admissions interview in order to establish the necessary fluency.

Transfer Policy

Although transfer credits are typically not accepted into the paralegal program, each request will be evaluated on an individual basis. In most cases, courses being considered for transfer must have been earned from an ABA-approved program within the immediate five (5) years. Students must have earned a minimum grade of B and the program must have been ABA-approved at the time the course was taken. The course 505 Professional Responsibility must be taken at Duquesne's Paralegal Institute. No more than two (2) paralegal courses will be considered for transfer.


For termination of attendance in courses after the 4th week of class. A "W" will appear on the transcript. Students are financially responsible for all withdrawals. Withdrawals must be processed before the 5th week of the term.

Contact Us

Ginny Zaccari

Paralegal Institute Program Director