Legal Practice Course - LPC

Attendance:
Full Time, Part Time
Starting:
September 2016
Campus:
Fees:
£9,670 for UK/EU Full Time 2016 entry (view all fees)

The Legal Practice Course (LPC) is the final academic stage of qualification before becoming a solicitor. The course bridges the gap between the academic study of law and the vocational stages of training. Following successful completion of the LPC you will need to undertake a two year vocational training contract to be able to practice as a solicitor.

The Course also offers a unique learning experience in the shape of a virtual solicitor's office in the University's virtual town, Shareville.

Our LPC is taught by an outstanding team of professional staff with extensive practice experience and a friendly, open door policy giving you all the support you need. We place our students at the centre of everything we do.

What's covered in the course?

The LPC is fully accredited by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and includes the opportunity to study an LLM Legal Practice (Top Up) course (Please note the LLM (Top Up) will be subject to additional fees). You will cover elements required by the Solicitors Regulation Authority including Property Law, Business Law and Practice and Litigation (including Civil and Criminal Litigation) and choose from a list of Electives available.

Our first-class facilities include two mock courtrooms and a comprehensive law library (with many resources accessible online), and there are extensive opportunities available with a variety of agencies throughout Birmingham.

Our LPC is taught by an outstanding team of professional staff with extensive practice experience and a friendly, open door policy giving you all the support you need. We place our students at the centre of everything we do.

Why Choose Us?

  • Our outstanding facilities include two mock courtrooms and an e-learning suite that can be used to bring study to life
  • Competitive course fees - option to pay by instalments over two years helping you to spread out the cost
  • The School of Law has an established record of providing the Legal Practice Course (LPC) and its predecessors since the 1960s.
  • All members of the teaching team are qualified solicitors with many years practice experience.
  • We provide opportunities for all students on the course to participate in pro-bono activities. Pro-bono will usually involve work for a charity or similar organisation in an advisory capacity which will be invaluable in terms of enhancing your career prospects.
  • We have a long running mentoring scheme, supported by the Birmingham Law Society, the Birmingham Trainee Solicitor Society and leading firms in the region. As part of the scheme, you will be assigned a local lawyer who will help with any questions or concerns you may have about your future career development.
Visit our open day

Postgraduate Open Day

Our next Postgraduate Open Day will be in Autumn 2016. The date will be confirmed soon and registration will open shortly.

In the meantime, register your details and we'll contact you when more information is available.

Sign up for Open Day info

This course is open to International students

School of Law

Discover the School of Law

Visit our School site for more student work and extra information.

Visit the School website

Where our students go

Our students have gone on to work with companies such as:

  • JD Solicitors
  • Kingswood Solicitors

And in jobs such as:

  • Solicitor
  • Paralegal

Entry Requirements

UK students
Essential

Students will require either a Qualifying Law Degree (e.g. an LLB from a University in England or Wales) or a Graduate Diploma in Law/Common Professional Examination.

Fellows of the Institute of Legal Executives (ILEX) are entitled to apply for direct entry to the course.

Before you can enrol on the LPC you must enrol as a student member of the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) and obtain a certificate of completion of the academic stage of training.

More information on how to become a student member can be found on this SRA webinar tutorial.

International entry requirements can be found at Information for International Enquirers

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
LPC Sep 2016 FT 1 year £9,670 Apply online now
PT 2 years £4,835 per year

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our PDF application form instead.

International Students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
LPC Sep 2016 FT 1 year £12,000 Apply online now

The University reserves the right to increase fees broadly in line with increases in inflation, or to reflect changes in government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament.

Additional costs

While there are no additional costs associated with purchasing text books, there may be other costs to you. If you are joining the course which has a professional body accreditation you may be required to pay membership or examination costs. For details of these costs, please click on the link below.

Based on the past experience of our students, you might find it helpful to set aside about £50 for each year of your studies for your personal stationery and study materials. All our students are provided with 100 free pages of printing each year to a maximum total value of £15.

Find additional costs for your course

Your personal statement

Your personal statement is a highly important part of your application. It gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

Course choice

Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?

Career plans

If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.

Work experience

Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.

School or college experience

Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.

Non-accredited skills or achievement

eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.

You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.

Get more information on writing personal statements.

This course is available part-time

Got any questions?

Search our Frequently Asked Questions for a range of information about our courses and studying here.

Financial Support

We offer further information on possible postgraduate financial support. This includes the type of loans, grants and scholarships available both from the government and from Birmingham City University.

Did you know that you will soon be able to apply for a postgraduate loan of up to £10,000?

Postgraduate loans

Stage one

 
Litigation (including Civil and Criminal Litigation)
 
Business Law and Practice
 
Property Law and Practice
 
Professional Conduct and Regulation including Solicitors' Accounts
 
Wills and Administration of Estates and Taxation
Course skills assessments

You will also be assessed in the following Course Skills Areas:

  • Practical Legal Research
  • Drafting
  • Writing
  • Interviewing
  • Advising
  • Advocacy

Stage two (option modules)

In addition to the Stage one modules you are required to complete three option modules. The following is an indicative list of our option modules:

Personal Injury and Clinical Negligence
Commercial Property
Commercial Law and Practice
Employment Law
Family Law
Private Client
Immigration Law

Course Structure

The LPC is a demanding course and is a leap forward from your undergraduate study. The emphasis is much more on the practical aspects of law and the aim of the course is to ensure you can enter practice with the skills and knowledge required to hit the ground running. You will be expected to keep up with background reading and class preparation and should expect to treat the course as if you were already handling a client’s case.

How you learn

All elements of the course are taught face to face. Classes on the full-time course run from Mondays to Wednesdays from 9am to 5pm. Classes on the part-time course run on a Tuesday and Thursday evening from 6pm over two years.

The compulsory subjects and skills taught on the LPC are prescribed by the Solicitors Regulation Authority. Each subject is introduced with a summary lecture providing guidance on difficult topics relating law to practice. The focus of learning is on small group teaching sessions, in the form of interactive workshops that enable you to explore key areas of law and practice in detail.

Small group sessions are also used to involve you in typical transactions encountered in practice. You can expect to carry through tasks as if you were in practice, working in teams, using electronic and other information sources.

Student stories

Daniel O'Leary

Daniel studied for his undergraduate Law degree (LLB) at Nottingham Trent University but chose Birmingham City University for his LPC due to our reputation and because we provide options relating to the area of law in which he wants to practice. Between completing his LLB and starting his LPC, Daniel worked for a year at a law firm. During this period he realised he wanted to be a solicitor and would need to complete the LPC as a step towards this goal.

Gerard Grey

Before coming to study the Legal Practice Course (LPC) at Birmingham City University I studied for a degree in Sociology and then for a postgraduate qualification in International Relations in my home country of Trinidad and Tobago.

“I chose to study the LPC at Birmingham City University because I found it good value for money and also because the Law School has a good reputation. I conducted some online research and found that the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) gave the School a commendable rating which influenced my decision.

“The LPC is an intense course so you have to be prepared to work very hard. I feel the course has met my expectations in that I am receiving a good standard of teaching and I am gaining an in-depth knowledge of law. The facilities within the Law School such as the courtrooms have been really useful in developing advocacy skills and overall I am very impressed.”

Student stories

Jimmy Ogunshakin

Jimmy Ogunshakin is a Commercial lawyer and a solicitor in private practice of ten years’ experience. He is the Founder of Mayflower Solicitors; a niche commercial law firm based in the financial district, west of the City of Birmingham, where he leads a passionate team of hard working lawyers.

David Wilson at The Future of Murder

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Employment Opportunities

Graduates will normally proceed to a training contract to complete their qualification as a solicitor. The vast majority of LPC graduates go on to become qualified solicitors in a range of organisations across many specialist areas. Some overseas professional bodies accept the LPC as satisfying their admission requirements to practise as a lawyer.

Qualifying as a lawyer

Solicitor or Barrister of England and Wales

Solicitors provide clients with legal advice often during times of extreme stress such as arrest, divorce, moving house or bereavement. They also represent clients in corporate or commercial transactions. As a solicitor, you may work in a firm with other solicitors or set up your own practice, or you might work in central or local government, an in-house legal department, the Crown Prosecution Service or the magistrates’ courts.

Barristers are specialists in advocacy - the act of presenting cases in court under instruction from a solicitor or another designated professional. Typically, the duties of a barrister may include preparing briefs (cases) for court, presenting arguments in court, examining and cross examining witnesses and preparing legal documents. Most barristers work on a self-employed basis, from chambers, although an increasing number work in private and public organisations.

To qualify as either a solicitor or barrister of England and Wales, you must first of all complete either an LLB or CPE/GDL from a university in England and Wales.

If you wish to qualify as a solicitor, after completing the LLB or CPE/GDL you will need to complete the Legal Practice Course (LPC). Once you have completed the LPC, you must complete a two-year training contract with a firm of solicitors. You will be qualified as a Solicitor of the Senior Courts of England and Wales upon completion of the two-year training contract.

If you wish to qualify as a barrister, after completing the LLB or CPE/GDL you will need to complete the Bar Professional Training Course (prior to September 2010 this was known as the Bar Vocational Course). You are “called to the Bar” once you complete the Bar Professional Training Course and are then entitled, without further training, to use the title Barrister of England and Wales. However, if you wish to practise in England and Wales you must also complete a one-year pupillage with a barristers’ chamber.

LLB (Hons) or GDL/CPE
Legal Practice Course Bar Professional Training Course (previously the Bar Vocational Course)
Two year training contract within a solicitors’ legal practice Qualified as a Barrister of England and Wales
Qualified as a solicitor of the Senior Courts of England and Wales One year pupillage within a Barristers’ Chambers
Qualified as a practising Barrister of England and Wales

Figure: Routes to qualification as a solicitor or barrister within England and Wales

Qualification as an Overseas Lawyer

Many of our international students join the School of Law with the intention of practising law, normally in their home country.

Our LPC is recognised by some overseas legal professional bodies, particularly in Commonwealth countries. If you intend to practise in your home country, you should contact your local Law Society or Bar Council to ensure the LPC is recognised. You may be required to undertake additional training before being authorised to practise law.

Some overseas Law Societies and Bar Councils will offer exemptions from all or part of their own training requirements if you qualify as a solicitor or barrister of England and Wales. For example, the Malaysian Bar recognises both solicitors and barristers of England and Wales – to be authorised as a solicitor and advocate of Malaysia you would have to complete a pupillage in Malaysia.

OpportUNIty

OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.

Graduate jobs

Graduates will normally proceed to a training contract to complete their qualification as a solicitor. The vast majority of LPC graduates go on to become qualified solicitors in a range of organisations across many specialist areas. Some overseas professional bodies accept the LPC as satisfying their admission requirements to practise as a lawyer.

Daniel O'Leary

Daniel O'Leary chose Birmingham City University for his LPC due to our reputation and because we provide options relating to the area of law in which he wants to practice. Between completing his LLB and starting his LPC, Daniel worked for a year at a law firm. During this period he realised he wanted to be a solicitor and would need to complete the LPC as a step towards this goal.

Daniel has found that staff at the Law School are always willing to try to find a solution to any problem and will point him in the right direction. The administrative staff have been particularly helpful and he has taken advantage of the University’s excellent facilities, including mock magistrates’ and crown courts.

International Students

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC)

International students who have a serious interest in studying with us but who perhaps cannot meet the direct entry requirements, academic or English, or who have been out of education for some time, can enter Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC) and begin their degree studies.

BCUIC

BCUIC is part of the global Navitas Group, an internationally recognised education provider, and the partnership allows students to access the University’s facilities and services and move seamlessly through to achieving a Bachelor’s degree from Birmingham City University.

Learn more about BCUIC

Popular home countries

Our students come from around the world but our legal practice course is most popular with international students from:

Curzon facilities eatery
Curzon facilities staircase
Curzon facilities student hub

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £260 million on new learning facilities.

The Curzon Building

This course is based at the City Centre Campus – and specifically The Curzon Building, alongside other law, business, social sciences and English courses

The £63m building offers students a unique social learning space, including a dedicated student hub incorporating student support services, in the heart of Birmingham’s Eastside development.

Our teaching and learning facilities include two video-equipped mock courtrooms. You will use these courtrooms to gain experience of realistic legal scenarios and to develop your legal skills. We also have a mock legal office which is used by Legal Practice Course (LPC) students.

We have an exciting and developing eLearning section to supplement the delivery of all our courses. This includes a Virtual Solicitors’ Office which has been developed by our law academics.

In addition we have recently invested £18,000 in a state-of-the-art ELearning Resource Centre which includes laptops, flip cameras, voice recorders, headsets, webcams, a digital video recorder and a state-of-the-art Smartboard and electronic notepad. With features such as Skype Group Video Calling, the school will be able to keep in touch with students carrying out internships in the USA, allowing tutors to provide effective support while the students are abroad.

The Curzon Building will also feature:

  • An impressive new library with access to over 65 million full text items and stunning views of Eastside City Park
  • Your Students’ Union which will be located in a beautifully restored 19th century pub, The Eagle and Ball
  • A modern 300-seat food court with space to study and socialise
  • Brand new, accessible IT facilities with full Office365 for all students for free
  • Shared facilities with the wider campus including the recently opened Parkside Building and Millennium Point

Meet our staff

Jonathan Cooper

Programme Director CPE/GDL; Senior Lecturer

Jonathan Cooper is a senior lecturer and CPE/GDL Programme Director for the School of Law. He has been with the University since 2009 and qualified as a solicitor at Walker Morris Solicitors in Leeds, specialising in landlord and tenant law and property litigation.

Martin Burnett

Senior Lecturer

Martin Burnett is a senior lecturer in the School of Law and also the LPC Admissions tutor. He is currently teaching on the LLB, LLM International Human Rights, and Legal Practice Course (LPC). Martin's current research interests are primarily in the field of family law and children's law/rights.

Angela Kerry

LPC Programme Director
UK prospective students:

UK enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5595

EU / International prospective students:

International enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5389

Already applied?

Email the applications team

+44 (0)121 331 6295