If your goal is to become a barrister, the Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) at Manchester Law School is designed to provide you with the best possible skills, experience and training to prepare you for a successful career. We offer advocacy training and group sessions that offer true-to-life mock trials, assessments, 'mini chambers' and real-life legal work experience opportunities.
Manchester Law School has a proud history of providing barrister training in the North West and as a result has outstanding links to both the local legal profession and the Northern Circuit (Chambers in Cheshire, Liverpool, Manchester and Preston). Practitioners from the Northern Circuit will provide you with Additional Advocacy Classes for students and are on-hand at regular events to offer advice about your future as a barrister and obtaining pupillage.
You can expect exceptionally high standards of tutoring and a wealth of pro bono opportunity. We will support you preparing pupillage applications, with access to our specialist careers service.
Features and benefits of the course
Specialist BPTC facilities
Recognising the challenging nature of barrister training, the Law School offers a number of specialist facilities for the use of students on the BPTC programme. Students benefit from specialist postgraduate study areas, personal chambers rooms, legal libraries, personal study areas plus a mock courtroom where students can practice their advocacy skills in a realistic legal environment.
We will provide you with the opportunity to hone your advocacy skills with many opportunities to understand the skills involved and to put them into practice. Our advocacy sessions far exceed the minimum hours set by the Bar Standards Board (BSB) and we are very proud of the skills that our students develop during the course. You will receive approximately 42 hours of criminal and civil advocacy plus assessments, which is over three times the minimum required by the BSB. We also offer Additional Classes with barristers who are in full time practice to give you further opportunities to develop your advocacy skills.
Additional Professional Programme (APP)
An innovative feature of Manchester Law School’s BPTC programme. The APP bridges the gap between student and professional life, and prepares you for the Bar. There is a whole range of extra curricula, career-boosting activities of which you can take advantage. From guest lectures provided by judges and clerks of chambers, to Pro Bono opportunities, the Student Law Society, mooting and other national competitions.
Practitioner Mentor Scheme
Each chambers group is allocated their own Practitioner Mentor, a locally based barrister who will be on hand to guide you along the path to practice.
Mediator Training Programme
We are exclusively offering the option to gain an additional independent professional qualification in mediation through the ADR group, normally costing £2,750 +VAT, at no extra cost to our BPTC students. The programme is practically orientated and focused on equipping you with the skills you need to perform well at mediation – either as a representative or as a mediator – and leads to ADR Group Accredited Mediator Status.
Award-winning Faculty environment
At Manchester Law School you will have access to an outstanding Faculty building, housing spacious study and IT zones, laptop counters, cafes and coffee shops, and free WiFi. You will benefit from highly modern facilities on our thriving campus too, at the heart of the UK’s second city.
About the Course
The BPTC focuses on developing highly practical skills and features an innovative 'mini-chambers' approach designed to mirror the real life working practices of a barrister. You will be placed in a group (or chambers) with 11 other students and be provided with a permanent, multimedia-equipped base room. You will be expected to 'perform' regularly in front of your fellow students to encourage the development of strong working relationships similar to a professional chambers.
The BPTC begins with a participative and dynamic induction programme introducing students to the highly practical BPTC, compared with academic study. Students are almost immediately offered the opportunity to network with local practitioners during a team building exercise and social event. Following this induction, the remainder of the course features a combination of compulsory subjects and an opportunity to study two subjects of your choice, depending on your particular career aspirations.