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  • Limited places available on our 2016 GDL with late start dates up to October

    Our Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL)

    Fast-track your legal career with our GDL law conversion course, your first step into law if you have already completed a non-law undergraduate degree.

    Benefit from our GDL enhancement, the Graduate LLB. NEW for 2016 and exclusively available for ULaw GDL students. The Graduate LLB enables you to upgrade your GDL to a Qualifying Law Degree. Successfully complete a further three modules, worth a total of 60 credits, and you will be awarded an LLB (Hons) in addition to your GDL -  at no extra cost.

    Many employers favour GDL students in an increasingly competitive legal job market. Through studying another degree subject, you will have gained many transferable skills. By taking the conversion route into law, you are showing motivation and determination by choosing law at a later stage than some others. This looks good to employers.

    If you are changing direction after starting in another career area, you will possess valuable work experience and professional awareness. Many employers actively seek candidates with these benefits.

    Our network of contacts, a dedicated employability service and a reputation in the legal profession mean we also have an outstanding track-record of finding students legal employment.

    With a clear focus on your future employability, we are more confident than ever in your success and offer our NEW LPC Employment Promise. Successfully complete your September 2016 start full-time GDL at The University of Law, and go onto to study the LPC with us in September 2017. If you don’t get a job in nine months of graduating, we’ll give you 100% of your LPC fees back: 50% of your fees as cashback plus 50% of your fees as credit towards any further courses.


  • Why choose our GDL?
    Here are just some of the reasons why we’re best placed to help you prepare for your future career as a solicitor or barrister:

    • We’ve teamed up with leading law firms to design a course that encourages you to think like a lawyer from the start

    • You’ll develop essential legal skills, and learn by experience through practical workshops and problem-based learning

    • You’ll receive unrivalled face-to-face teaching and tutor support from qualified lawyers with practical experience; so you will know what to expect in real-life situations

    • Our GDL is endorsed by leading law firms, and we're the preferred training provider to over 30 of them

    • Flexible study options - choose to study full-time, part-time or via our supported online distance learning programme

    • Get award winning careers support to help you stand out from the crowd as soon as you accept your place

    • To be eligible to take up your place on our GDL, you must comply with the following requirements:

      • A UK undergraduate degree in any discipline (minimum 2:2), or an equivalent qualification.

      • Overseas graduates and mature non-graduates:

        • Future barristers - please apply for a Certificate of Academic Standing from the Bar Standards Board (BSB)
        • Future solicitors - please send your qualifications through to the Admissions team who can deem whether you are eligible for the course 
      • A sufficient command of English is required to successfully complete the course

      • If you have a legal qualification from outside England and Wales or have studied aspects of law as part of a non-qualifying degree course, you may be exempted from certain elements of the GDL. If this applies to you:

        • Future barristers - please apply for a Certificate of Academic Standing from the Bar Standards Board (BSB)
        • Future solicitors - please e-mail a copy of your degree certificate through to the Admissions team who can deem whether you are eligible for certain exemptions on the GDL
      • If you are claiming full exemptions for the GDL you will need to apply for a Certificate of Exemption from the Bar Standards Board or Solicitors Regulation Authority

      Further information can be obtained from the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) (for future solicitors) or Bar Standards Board (BSB) (for future barristers)

      If you have completed a degree outside the UK and you do not come from a majority English speaking country:

      A certified copy of any document that proves that you are qualified in English at CEFR level B2 or above in each of the four components of language learning.  Providers that we would suggest you contact are:

      GDL
      IELTS (academic) Score of 6.5 in all four areas
      ISE III (Trinity College London) Pass in all four components
      Pearsons (academic) Score of 58 in all four areas

      Cambridge English: First Certificate, Advanced and Proficiency (tests taken from January 2015)

      Overall 176 with no one component below 176

      Cambridge English: First Certificate (test taken before January 2015)

      Pass at Grade A and Exceptional in all four components

      Cambridge English: Advanced (test taken before January 2015)

      Pass at Grade B or C and Borderline in all four components

      Cambridge English: Proficiency (test taken before January 2015)

      Pass at Grade C1 and Weak in all four components

      Failure to comply with these eligibility requirements means that the University will have no option but to cancel your place on the course. It is important you check out any queries before you apply. 

      Full-time and i-GDL selection criteria
      • Academic performance at school and university
      • Demonstration of an informed decision to study law
      • Any special circumstances revealed in your application
      • Academic or other references
      Part-time (Evening/Day/Weekend) selection criteria
      • Open access, subject to the above entry requirements

      The University of Law fully complies with equal opportunities legislation and actively encourages diversity within the legal profession. Our admissions process acts fairly and aims to enable students to make the best use of their talents. You are encouraged to tell us about any special requirements at the earliest opportunity. This will allow us to discuss how we may go about meeting your requirements.

    • Visa requirements

      Further information for visa students 

      Non-EEA students requiring a visa to study should refer to the UKVI Policy Guidance, which can be found on their website: https://www.gov.uk/tier-4-general-visa. Please note that immigration regulations are subject to change at any time. Specific enquiries regarding University sponsorship of students under Tier 4 of the Points Based System can be e-mailed to visaoffice@law.ac.uk 

      It is the responsibility of all students from outside the EU to ensure you have a visa covering the full duration of your course.

    • The practical application of the knowledge and skills learned in our lectures* and small group workshops, supported by our innovative online learning resources including recordings of live lectures, gives you the edge over other candidates in the competitive job market.

      The course is divided into nine modules, made up of seven foundations subjects, a module at the start of the course providing insight into the profession and a choice of module enabling you to study an area of law that you would like to specialise in.

      You'll start with our online pre-course study programme on legal method, designed specifically to prepare you for the GDL, so you're up to speed when you arrive.

      Our online pre-course study programme in legal method is a compulsory and integral part of the GDL and must be completed before you start the course. It has been designed to allow you to work at your own pace and should take you approximately 50 hours to complete.

      * for i-GDL students lectures will be made available as recordings

      Ethics and Professional Legal Practice module
      This unique module taken at the start of the course includes:
      • Insight into the different areas of the legal profession
      • Consideration of the role of legal ethics within the profession
      • Development of key legal skills and professional attributes required by lawyers

      Foundation subjects

      You’ll then study the seven key areas of law:

      • Contract law
        You’ll deal with how contracts are made, what happens when they work properly and the remedies available when they go wrong. You’ll look at contract issues which are relevant for both the consumer and business client. In practice, whether you are dealing with contracts in the corporate or commercial world you will be applying the basic principles of contract law that you cover on the course.

      • Criminal law
        You probably feel you already know something about criminal law. In fact, the detailed workings of crimes like corporate manslaughter are even more intricate and fascinating than you might have thought. On this course, you'll also grapple with ethical issues, such as whether taking another person's life can ever be justified or excused.

      • Equity and trusts
        On this module you'll deal with: the making of gifts, the creation of trusts, the role of trustees in both the family and the wider commercial context, and the remedies against trustees who commit a breach of trust.

      • European Union law
        In EC law, you'll assess the impact that British membership of the European Community has had on the English legal system.

      • Land law
        You'll study the law relating to the ownership of land, the creation of rights over land such as rights of way and the impact those rights have on the current and future owners of the land.

      • Public law
        This module looks at the relationship between Parliament, the Government and the courts, and between the state and individual citizens. You’ll explore the most important aspects of this relationship, including the principles on which the UK constitution is based.

      • Tort
        Tort simply means ‘civil wrong’ and on this course you will study the various ways in which individuals or businesses seek a remedy (often in the form of compensation) for harm which they have suffered or become liable for damage which they have caused.

      Choose between one of the following modules:

      Research Project module

      In this module you will plan, research and write an essay, tailored to reflect the area of law in which you intend to specialise. You will have time dedicated in your timetable to undertake this work and detailed guidance on both legal research and legal essay writing skills.

      Law of Organisations module

      This module is for students intending to practice as a solicitor in a corporate law practice and is offered as an alternative option to the Research Project module. In this module you will study the principles of contract and corporate law that underpin the creation and running of business organisations. The module will develop your legal research skills in this area resulting in the preparation of a legal report on an allocated problem based question. On the full-time course, this module will be taught through face-to-face workshops and on the part-time course this module will be studied online. 

    • Structure

      Full-time 

      • Courses start in January and late September each year.
      • There is a compulsory one day induction during the first week of the course.
      • Study three modules per 12 week semester over three semesters. 
      • Each semester comprises nine teaching weeks and three weeks for revision and assessment. You will be assessed on the modules you complete at the end of each semester.
      • Regular pattern of three tutor-led workshops of two hours and three lectures of one hour giving nine hours of face to face tuition per week (45 hours per week).
      • Four-day timetable, with the same free day for private study each week.
      • Extra option of two-day timetabling, with face-to-face tuition concentrated into two set days per week. Assessments may be scheduled outside the two set days and this option is subject to availability at your centre of choice.
      • Up to ten hours of preparation for each workshop, using interactive study manuals and online interactive tutorials (i-Tutorials).
      • Before you start your GDL you will need to complete our online pre-course study programme on legal method. It’s a compulsory and integral part of the course. Designed to help prepare you for your career in law, with no need for advance reading. It takes approximately 50 hours.

        Part-time Evening* 
        • Courses start in late September each year.
        • There is a compulsory induction spread over two evenings at the start of the course.
        • Study one full module and half a module per 12 week semester over six semesters.
        • You will be assessed on those modules at the end of each semester in which study of that module is completed thereby spreading the study and assessments over the year
        • One or two evenings per week on alternate weeks each with two hours of tutor contact in workshops (22.5 hours per week).
        • Interactive study manuals and e-learning, including online interactive tutorials (i-Tutorials) for independent learning between study days.
        • Face-to-face sessions in workshops (recordings of lectures), with exception to the Law of Organisations module, which is studied online (unless you choose the self-study Research Project module).
        • Before you start your GDL you will need to complete our online pre-course study programme on legal method. It’s a compulsory and integral part of the course. Designed to help prepare you for your career in law, with no need for advance reading. It takes approximately 50 hours.

        Part-time Weekend 
        • Courses start in late September each year.
        • There is a compulsory one day induction at the start of the course.
        • Study one full module and half a module per 12 week semester over six semesters.
        • You will be assessed on those modules at the end of each semester in which study of that module is completed thereby spreading the study and assessments over the year.
        • Following induction there are 12 study weekends each year spread across three semesters (22.5 hours per week).
        • Interactive study manuals and e-learning, including online interactive tutorials (i-Tutorials) for independent learning between study days.
        • Face-to-face sessions in workshops (recordings of lectures), with exception to the Law of Organisations module, which is studied online (unless you choose the self-study Research Project module).
        • Before you start your GDL you will need to complete our online pre-course study programme on legal method. It’s a compulsory and integral part of the course. Designed to help prepare you for your career in law, with no need for advance reading. It takes approximately 50 hours.


        Assessment

        Regular informal assessments and written and oral feedback from tutors will help you monitor your progress in preparation for the final exams.

        Your final result is based on:

        • Passing a 30-minute, multiple choice open book examination on legal method
        • Seven, three-hour closed book examinations - one for each foundation subject
        • Two pieces of coursework: one short essay on ethical considerations in the legal profession and a longer essay based on your own study and research on a legal subject of your choice.

        *Please note that assessments will take place during weekdays.

        GDL Full-time Programme Demands (PDF)
        GDL Part-time Programme Demands (PDF)
        GDL Programme Specification (PDF)

      • Course locations
           Full-time  Part-time Evening  Part-time Weekend  i-GDL 
        Birmingham

        w/c 19 September 2016

        w/c 2 January 2017

        1 October 2016 -
        Bristol w/c 19 September 2016
        1 October 2016
        Chester w/c 19 September 2016
        1 October 2016
        Exeter w/c 19 September 2016
        -
        Guildford w/c 19 September 2016 1 October 2016
        Leeds

        w/c 19 September 2016

        w/c 2 January 2017

        1 October 2016
        -
        London Bloomsbury w/c 19 September 2016 w/c 19 September 2016 1 October 2016

        17 September 2016

        7 January 2017

        London Moorgate 

        w/c 19 September 2016

        w/c 2 January 2017

        -
         -
        Manchester w/c 19 September 2016
        1 October 2016


        Start dates are subject to change.

        Course dates

        Full-time

        The GDL starts with an online pre-course study programme on legal method, designed specifically to prepare you for the GDL, so you are up to speed when you arrive. This is a compulsory and integral part of the GDL and must be completed before you start the course. It has been designed to allow you to work at your own pace and should take you approximately 50 hours to complete.

        Each centre will hold an induction programme, which will be scheduled during the first week of the course.

        Non-EEA students will have a separate induction. See induction dates for non-EEA students for further information.

        Full course dates to be published shortly.


        Part-time - Evening

        Part-time - Weekend

          i-GDL

          Occasional attendance is required.

        • GDL fees for September 2016 and January 2017 start courses

          Course fees are the same for the full-time and part-time GDL programme.

          Centre  Total Fees Payable 
          Birmingham, Bristol, Exeter £8,570 
          Chester, Leeds, Manchester  £8,420 
          Guildford  £8,900 
          London (Bloomsbury and Moorgate)  £10,590 

          Further information about course fees and instalment options.

        • Applications for our full-time, part-time and i-GDL courses are now open.

          Apply now

      • Enquire now
      • Thank you for registering your interest in our GDL programme. We will be in touch over the next couple of days with all the information you’ll need to know about the course.

        In the meantime, why not order a prospectus or book an open day at one of our eight centres?

        If you have any other questions feel free to call us on 0800 289 997

      • My law qualification is giving me a well rounded understanding of the corporate world

        Rana Al Alawi, GDL Student, Guildford