Canada’s Legal System
Hours: 19.5 Credits: 1.0

This course introduces the student to the Canadian legal system. It covers the structure and levels of government (federal, provincial, and municipal), how laws are passed, the court system, our two legal systems in Canada, and the three branches of government – the executive, legislative, and judicial branches. The projects are aimed at exposing the student to various government websites. Critical to this course is the structure and levels of our courts in Canada. The process of lawmaking (from bill to royal assent) is described. This course serves as the foundation for all future units in this program.

Law Office Procedures
Hours: 19.5 Credits: 1.0

This course is practical in nature. It covers law office management procedures, dealing with the Canadian legal profession, client communication, drafting letters of correspondence, file management, and legal accounting. Aspects of our legal profession will be explored, such as the role of the Law Society of Alberta, Lawyer Referral Service, and Legal Aid. File management deals with labeling and creating files for clients. Legal accounting software will be discussed to show how law offices maintain financial records for both general and trust accounts. Students are encouraged to draft Statement of Accounts or Bill of Costs. Various projects will be done to draft legal letters using a particular format common in the legal profession.

Civil Litigation
Hours: 39 Credits: 2.0

This course covers the lawsuit in Canada. It deals with specific documents known as pleadings – such as Statement of Claims. It describes the Alberta Rules of Court, as this is the foundation for all procedural matters in Alberta. Students are encouraged to draft pleadings, affidavits, orders, and other court-based documents.

Wills and Estates
Hours: 19.5 Credits: 1.0

This course covers key documents – wills, power of attorney, personal directives, guardianships and trusteeships. It also explores the role of the Surrogate Court of Alberta in dealing with probate matters. The student shall draft these key documents in lieu with estate issues such as intestacy, trustee powers, and death issues. The role of the executor, testator, attorneys, agents, beneficiaries and trustees will be examined to understand how estate assets are distributed.

Commercial/Corporate Law
Hours: 39 Credits: 2.0

This course deals with contract law. This means exploring the legal elements of a contract, the nature and types of agreements, and the drafting of such agreements. Various provisions of a contract are explored in detail, as the student will see many of these contracts in a law office setting. Debt collections will also be explored to see how the relationship exists between creditors and debtors. This course is essential for corporate law.

In addition, the course deals with various business entities – sole proprietorships, corporations, partnerships, joint ventures, and franchises. The dominant category of corporations is covered to explore the process of incorporations, the maintenance of Corporate Minute Books, the transfer of shares, the role of shareholders, directors, officers, and third parties, and dissolution of corporations. Franchise law will also be covered to examine the role of franchise businesses in Canada, including the franchise disclosure process between franchisors and franchisees. Securities law will also be covered to deal with insider trading, and the role of the Alberta Securities Commission.

Intellectual Property Law
Hours: 19.5 Credits: 1.0

This course deals with intellectual property (IP) of copyrights, trademarks, patents, industrial designs, and integrated circuit topographies. The course shall explore the role of the Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO). In their projects, students shall be responsible for drafting key documents related to all forms of IP.

Criminal Law and Procedure
Hours: 19.5 Credits: 1.0

This course covers both criminal offences and criminal procedure in Canada. It deals with several provisions in the Criminal Code of Canada, as well the court procedures dealing with those offences. Specific topics include the categories of crime – summary conviction, indictable offences, and hybrid offences. Case law shall be covered to explain the nature of criminal offences and procedure. The concept of disclosure, constitutional rights from the Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and various trial steps (such as preliminary inquiry and jury selection) will be covered.

Family Law
Hours: 19.5 Credits: 1.0

This course covers the diverse area of family law, dealing with specific topics such as marriage, divorce, maintenance (child support and spousal support), visitation, cohabitation, the best interests of the child, and domestic violence. Key statutes in Alberta such as the Family Law Act will be covered. As well, the student shall draft key family law documents, including Statement of Claim for Divorce and Matrimonial Property, Notice to Disclose, Emergency Protection Orders. The range of forms is numerous, so the student shall become familiar with the Alberta and Federal forms.

Real Estate Law
Hours: 39 Credits: 2.0

This course the purchase and sale of real property. This includes an overview of the real estate transaction process from start to finish. Topics include real estate purchase contracts and listings, mortgages, the players in the real estate deal (buyer and seller, realtor, lender, lawyer, land titles office). Included are projects dealing with the drafting of key documents, such as the real estate purchase contract, mortgage agreements, statement of adjustments, and trust letters. As part of this course is due diligence, the background searches for taxes, title, debts, mortgages, encumbrances and liens.

COMM116 Professionalism, Communication and Employment I
Hours: 39 Credits: 3.0

This classroom-based course is designed to make the student aware of the appropriate professional attitudes and behaviours employers are seeking in their employees. The student may complete a motivation questionnaire, occupational personality inventory, and a team work assessment. They may also complete assessments of listening and speaking skills, following written and/or verbal instruction, and their level of engagement. Each of these assessments will be conducted again in their COMM118 course and the results provided on individual certificates to be placed in the student’s professional portfolio. Students, whose first language is not English, will be introduced to online resources that will help them improve their speaking skills. These students will be encouraged to spend personal time throughout this program improving their speaking skills. Further, the course will begin preparing students for their field-based work experience. This may include such topics as job search skills, the development of a resume and professional portfolio, and a review of the College’s Work Experience Agreement and related documents. Prerequisite: None

COMM117 Professionalism, Communication, and Employment II
Hours: 39 Credits: 3.0

This classroom-based course will continue to make the student aware of the appropriate professional attitudes and behaviours employers are seeking in their employees. This may include assessments of their business etiquette, counter-productive behaviours, general reasoning skills, customer service mindset, and customer service representative. Results for each of these assessments will be provided on individual certificates to be placed in the student’s professional portfolio. This course will also focus additional attention on effective methods of communication. The student will spend additional time preparing for their field-based work experience. This may include such topics as interviewing techniques, career changes, and the identification of possible work experience employers. This may include interviews with possible work experience employers and the signing of related contract. Prerequisite: COMM116

COMM118 Professionalism, Communication, and Employment III
Hours: 10 Classroom Credits: 6
160 Work Experience

This course will consist of weekly, two-hour Saturday classes that will enable the facilitator and students to identify workplace observations, issues, and challenges from their 160 hour field-based work experience. The intended outcomes would be a better understanding of the student’s challenges, roles, responsibilities, and duties in the workplace. Other topics would include a review of the employer evaluation form, the final preparation of the student’s professional portfolio, and job search activities. This work experience will give the student the opportunity to demonstrate, in a real work setting, they possess the relevant knowledge and skills, as well as the essential attitudes, and behaviours employers are looking for in their new employees. The evaluation they receive from their work supervisor(s) will be added to their professional portfolio. They will also be able to list this experience on their resume as evidence to a future employer that they have both the relevant education and experience critical in obtaining employment. Students who perform very well on their work experience may receive a job offer; one or more references to add to their resume; and/or contact information that will enable them to network with other potential employers. They may also receive free job placement support from one of the staff recruitment companies with which Columbia College has developed a sound working relationship. Prerequisites: COMM117