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Explore Law: Your questions answered

Are you interested in studying law but have questions about starting on the right path and how you should prepare yourself? Then look no further, at a recent online Explore Law event, former Solicitor and now Senior Tutor Donna Jeays answered your questions about taking your first steps into law.

By Cara Fielder. Published 19 May 2023.

What is an LLB?

LLB is an abbreviation of the Latin Legum Baccalaureus which translates as Bachelor of Laws.

The LLB Law is a qualifying undergraduate degree that is the equivalent of a BA or BSC. The LLB is your first step on the way to becoming a solicitor or barrister and is made up of seven compulsory subjects which make up the foundation of legal knowledge.

Compulsory LLB subjects:

  • Constitutional/administrative law
  • Criminal law
  • Contract law
  • Land law
  • Equity and trusts
  • EU law
  • Tort law

The LLB is the most popular route for people who aspire to join the legal profession.

However, you need some postgraduate training before you can become a qualified solicitor or barrister. The LLB also teaches you so many transferable skills, there are many pathways other than law available to you after graduating.

We also offer many combined LLBs such as LLB Law with Criminology,  LLB Law with International Business and more.


Should I be a solicitor or barrister?

This is a highly personal question and depends on what you want and what you enjoy.

A solicitor is a general practitioner who covers a wide area of law, whereas a barrister is more specialised. For example, a solicitor would cover all areas of family law, but a barrister may only focus on the financial aspects of family law.

A solicitor will:

  • Have a lot of contact with their clients who are businesses and the general public
  • Establish long-term relationships with their clients
  • Receive a regular monthly salary

A barrister will:

  • Spend a lot of time speaking and presenting in public
  • Mainly interact with lawyers, less with the public
  • Become an expert in a particular field of law and undertake specialist research

You can find out more about barristers and solicitors in our article explaining the differences in detail.


Where do most solicitors work?

According to the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA)

  • 21% of lawyers work in the City of London
  • 20% work in the rest of London
  • 10% in the North West
  • 9% in the South East
  • 7% outside of England and Wales
  • 6% in the South West
  • 6% in the West Midlands
  • 6% Yorkshire and Humberside
  • 5% Eastern
  • 3% Wales
  • 3% East Midlands
  • 2% North East
  • 2% unknown

Many solicitors end up living in and around London due to many large corporate companies having headquarters there. However, there are several other legal hubs around the country such as Birmingham and Manchester.


What are the benefits of an apprenticeship?

If the traditional study route into practice doesn’t appeal to you, there are several benefits to considering qualifying through an apprenticeship.

  • Earn as you learn
  • Avoid student debt
  • Learn from experts
  • Gain valuable skills and experience

Learn more about apprenticeships and if one could be right for you.


What can I do to prepare for a career in law?

Law is highly competitive, so you need an edge, a reason to stand out from the crowd. Here are a few tips on how you can do that before you start your legal education.

  • Aim for good grades
  • Participate in extra-curricular activities
  • Take on positions of responsibility
  • Gain commercial awareness
  • Work experience
  • Read quality media articles


Take your first step into a life-changing career and study an undergraduate course with us.