The course is an excellent preparation for practice giving you a realistic experience of life as a trainee solicitor.
Who is it for?
This course is well suited for anyone who wants to become a solicitor whatever area of law they are interested in. There is a rich blend of students on the course with a variety of backgrounds and interests.
There are students from a number of jurisdictions many of whom will have experience of working in practice. Most students will have a upper second class honours degree or have performed well on the Graduate Diploma in Law. A high standard of work is therefore expected and achieved.
This postgraduate Legal Practice Course is a practical course which will give you a strong foundation for a future career in the law. This is reflected in the skills based, transactional nature of the course.
You will work on a series of client files which will be similar to the cases dealt with in a solicitor’s office. The law school’s experienced staff will guide you through the different tasks that would have to be undertaken to advance the client’s case. Your approach to the course will therefore be very different to the one experienced in an academic law course. You will have to apply knowledge in a way that best serves the client’s interests.
The course is very interactive. You will learn by performing tasks relating to the case studies that you are given. These include drafting legal documents, preparing letters of advice or delivering a submission at court. At the end of the course you will therefore be well prepared for your career in the law.
The course is delivered at the Gray’s Inn Place campus in the heart of legal London. The campus has a specific professional programmes library and all the classrooms have been designed to meet the requirements of the professional law courses.
There is a dedicated LPC suite of classrooms which also includes lockers and a resources room specifically for LPC students. The building which houses the LPC suite also has 10 video rooms where students can practice performances in the oral skills.
There are no placements as part of the course. However, students will be able to take advantage of the many pro bono opportunities that the law school offers. These include advice clinics, court based projects and schemes which offer the opportunity to work abroad. The City Law School also has links with a wide variety of organisations who can offer opportunities to volunteer with them.
The law school is often approached by firms offering internships to students.
Teaching and learning
One of the strong features of the LPC at City is the level of support students receive. All of the tutors on the course are solicitors, some of whom have worked as partners in their previous firms. They are supported by occasional sessions delivered by practitioners or visiting academics who are experts in their particular fields.
The course is structured in a way that allows you to gain maximum benefit from the experience that tutors have. Students therefore get a high level of face to face contact time with tutors.
This is reinforced by the size of the groups. For the workshops students will be in a group which has a maximum of 16 students. This group will then split into two for the skills sessions which have a maximum of eight students. This allows more time for students to get guidance from tutors.
These smaller sessions are underpinned by the large groups. All students will attend these sessions which give an overview of the area being studied.
The assessment regime for the course has to meet the SRA’s requirements. This means that the Core Practice Areas, Electives and Professional Conduct and Regulation (including Solicitors Accounts) are assessed by means of a written examination.
The Course Skills are assessed in the context of the Core Practice Areas and Wills in a manner that is appropriate to the individual skill. For example, you will have to conduct a filmed interview with an actor as your client, make a filmed court submission, draft a legal document or prepare a letter of advice for a client.
Our assessments are open book and therefore test your application of the law rather than your memory.
The course begins with a two week Foundation when you will have classes every day. This will introduce you the Course Skills and the more practical approach that we take to studying the law. The course is then divided into two stages.
In stage one you will study the core modules. During this stage you will attend four days a week. You will normally have three one and half hour sessions a day amounting to 16 – 18 hours a week.
In stage two, you will study three elective modules. Your timetable will depend on the electives that you choose. You will have around 13.5 – 15 hours of classes a week during this stage.
Stage one - in Stage one you have to complete nine compulsory modules as follows:
-Core Practice Areas
-Professional Conduct and Regulation
-Wills and the Administration of Estates
Stage two - during Stage two of the course you will study your electives. In order to complete the LPC you must pass three electives. You can take your electives at more than one provider and you can take your electives at providers other than City. You should, however, be aware that it might be more expensive for you to do this. You will choose your electives in November/December after having received guidance from the tutors about your choice. You will have to opt for either a commercial or general practice route although the bulk of the electives are open to all students. All students can choose from the following electives:
-Advanced civil litigation (10 credits)
-Commercial dispute resolution
-Commercial law (10 credits)
-Employment law (10 credits)
-Media law (10 credits)
If you take the commercial route you can also opt for Equity Finance and Mergers and Acquisitions. You will not be able to choose options on the general practice route. On the general practice route you can opt for Family or Private Client but will not be able to take options from the commercial route.
This course is designed to prepare you for life as a trainee solicitor.
Many applicants will not have a training contract when they start the course. The law school offers the bespoke Training Contract Advisory Service (TCAS). This is run by members of the team who were partners in their firms and so know what employers are looking for.
TCAS offers assistance with CV’s, covering letters, selection days and other matters relating to a search for a traineeship. In particular, students can arrange a mock interview with a member of the team. The support offered has allowed graduates to go into a wide variety of firms. These include commercial and high street firms both within and outside London.
We do retain links with our alumni some of whom assist us with the course in a variety of ways. In particular, we have a mentor scheme which involves previous students and members of the profession more generally. The mentors are able to give you guidance on your career.
Some graduates will also go on to further study or use the skills and knowledge acquired in areas outside of the law.