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Changes to Professional Qualification

Recent changes affect the qualification route for students seeking to become a Solicitor in England and Wales.

Quality of our degree

The Newcastle LLB continues to provide students with a rigorous and challenging course.

It includes foundational legal knowledge. There's opportunity to study a range of subjects and develop key transferrable skills.

It's a recognised law degree for admission to the Institute of Professional Legal Studies for practice in Northern Ireland. Please see the list of recognised degrees.

Changes to professional qualification as a Solicitor

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) introduced a new Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE) in 2017.

To help you understand how these changes could affect you, download our SQE and Me [PDF: 92.7kB] guide.

Qualifying as a Barrister

The Future Bar Training Programme (FBT) replaces the BPTC from 2020. The three components of education and training for the Bar will remain:

  1. academic learning (gaining knowledge of the law itself)
  2. vocational learning (acquiring barristers' core skills such as advocacy)
  3. pupillage or work-based learning (learning to be a Barrister "on the job")

Within the new system there are four approved training pathways:

  • Three-step pathway: academic, followed by vocational, followed by pupillage/work-based component (the pathway if you undertake the LLB programme)
  • Four-step pathway: academic component, followed by vocational component in two parts, followed by pupillage or work-based component
  • Integrated academic and vocational pathway: combined academic and vocational components followed by pupillage or work-based component
  • Apprenticeship pathway: combined academic, vocational and pupillage or work-based components

The Bar Standards Board still require the academic component to contain the 7 ‘Foundations of Legal Knowledge’. That includes the skills associated with it – such as legal research skills.

The Newcastle LLB continues to provide the 7 Foundations of Legal Knowledge. We'll give you the skills to pursue a career at the Bar in England and Wales.

For more information, please see the Future Bar Training Programme.

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