Will I Need To Know Dictation to Be a Paralegal?

If you have given consideration to the pursuit of a career as a paralegal, you may be wondering about whether dictation skill for paralegals is a requirement. By reading the information found below, you can obtain an answer to this question and several others that pertain to the work of a paralegal.

Paralegal-A Brief Overview

Although broadly defined, a paralegal is an individual who performs a broad range of duties to assist lawyers. Some of those tasks can include conducting legal research, drafting documents, and organizing and maintaining files.

Are Dictation Skills Required?

If you are wondering whether you will be required to possess dictation skills in order to work as a paralegal, you should know that the answer is maybe. In discussing this matter in her important article “What does a paralegal do compared to a legal assistant or a legal secretary?”
Tonya Pierce notes that “Because there are no national standards or certifications for paralegals, it is up to the legal community as a whole to determine job descriptions.” Pierce goes on to point out that “A paralegal’s job description will vary depending on the attorney, the type of law the attorney practices, the size of the law firm and the location of the law firm.”

Should You Obtain Dictation Skills?

As noted above, the work that a paralegal will be required to do is contingent upon the employer. This means that the employer may or may not require employees to possess dictation skills. Despite the fact that dictation skills may not be required, however, it is almost always a good idea to develop this skill set. This is the case for several reasons, including the fact that any additional skills you possess will help make you a more marketable job candidate and give you a competitive edge over other candidates who do not possess as many capabilities as you.

Dictation-The Basics

In recognizing the fact that the acquisition of dictation skills could make you a more marketable job candidate, you should gain a basic understanding of what this skill is and how to obtain it. Although broadly defined, dictation is basically a “decoding-recoding activity” that involves one individual verbally relaying information and the other individual typing the information into document format. Dictation incorporates several elements, including the act of filtering out irrelevant or otherwise unnecessary information. Developing dictation skills can be advantageous for many reasons, including the fact that it contributes to the development of listening, writing, reading, and speaking skills.

Other Considerations

If you are thinking about obtaining dictation skills in order to obtain a job as a paralegal, you should know that there are also other things you can do in order to make yourself a marketable job candidate. For example, you might consider completing an internship which provides you with hands-on experience in the legal world. Additionally, you could volunteer at a local law firm in order to learn more about how to effectively assist lawyers.


If you have given any consideration to becoming a paralegal, you may have wondered about whether dictation skill for paralegals is required. Now that you know that dictation skill for paralegals is a requirement that employers may or may not enforce, you can make an informed decision regarding whether obtaining this skill set would be appropriate and advantageous for you.

For more information on earning your paralegal degree, please see Top 10 Online Paralegal Degree Programs.