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Course summary

Our Bar Vocational Studies (BVS) programmes allow you to be called to the Bar. Our full-time, part-time and two-part options offer you a choice a combination of learning methods and routes depending on your requirements and learning style. You can tailor the course to your interests with a wide range of elective modules, informed by research and taught by experts in the subject. You will receive training in our outstanding new facilities in the Sebastian Street building and be part of a most diverse and welcoming community. Study at a truly comprehensive Law School in the heart of London and benefit from our international networks and partnerships. We have a strong record of students gaining pupillage thanks to our excellent Pupillage Advice Service. The expertise and experience of our staff ensures students get a high quality education by having a mix of practitioners and educators. This is supported by regular contact and support from personal tutors. The City Law School offers a range of Bar Vocational Studies (BVS) programmes to suit your needs. Designed for flexibility and accessibility, you can choose from the full-time, part-time or two-part programme. You can also select one of three qualifications to study towards. The Vocational Component is accredited by the Bar Standards Board. The BSB sets out the education and training requirements for becoming a barrister, which means once you graduate, and provided you complete the Inns qualifying sessions, you are qualified for Call to the Bar. Our routes:

  • Bar Vocational Studies (BVS) - Full-time:
This face-to-face learning option offers you a high level of interaction with tutors, professionals and peers. You will have the benefit of working in small study groups, simulated courtroom environments and have a choice of three different routes.
  • Bar Vocational Studies (BVS) - Part-time:
This two-year course is structured to enable you to manage the workload alongside work and other commitments. You will cover the same material as students on the full-time course, but the learning is spread over two years with teaching one day per week every fortnight. The Vocational Component is accredited by the Bar Standards Board. The BSB sets out the education and training requirements for becoming a barrister, which means once you graduate, and provided you complete the Inns qualifying sessions, you are qualified for Call to the Bar.

Modules

This programme has several routes, with different exit points depending on the route chosen. Bar Vocational Studies PGDip If you choose this route, you will be required to study the 10 core modules set by the Bar Standards Board. These form the vocational components of training for the Bar for which you will be awarded the Postgraduate Diploma in Bar Vocational Studies. Bar Vocational Studies PGDip with Specialism

  • This is the compulsory vocational component plus a Specialist Practice Component
  • You choose two elective modules from a Specialist Practice area of your choice.
  • Successfully complete the Specialist Practice Component, and you will be awarded a PGDip in Bar Vocational Studies with the relevant specialist area of practice you selected named in the award.
  • This award includes the qualification for Call to the Bar of England and Wales.
  • If you choose this route, you will study elective modules from a Specialist Practice area of your choice.
LLM Bar Vocational Studies In addition to the Vocational Component and the Specialist Practice Component, you can choose to complete either:
  • a practice-focussed dissertation
  • a clinical legal project with a real client (only available to full-time students).
Completion of the dissertation or clinical legal project in addition to the vocational and specialist practice components, allows you to achieve a master’s degree. This entitles you to the award of LLM in Bar Vocational Studies (with specialism). The programme can be studied full-time over one academic year, or part-time over two academic years. Part-time students attend classes one day a week (1.5 days for students who choose the LLM route). Specialism modules If you choose to complete the LLM or PG Dip (with specialism) you will need to complete two additional electives that are drawn from the following specialist areas of practice:
  • Advanced Advocacy Skills
  • Advanced Civil Practice
  • Advanced Criminal Practice
  • Corporate Law and Practice
  • International Commercial Trade and Dispute Resolution
  • Social Justice and Public Law
This award includes the qualification for Call to the Bar of England and Wales.

Assessment method

Your learning will depend on whether you take the general Master of Laws LLM and choose from more than 30 modules, or whether you study one of a number of specialist LLM programmes that require you to study certain modules. We will assess you in various ways including written coursework, presentations, skills work, in-class tests, projects and a dissertation. We give you the chance to complete formative coursework in each module, enabling you to understand the academic levels expected. Most modules are assessed by written coursework of 5,000 words. Your 30-credit dissertation module requires you to make a 10,000 word submission on a subject agreed with your supervisor. You may opt for a 60-credit dissertation instead, requiring 20,000 words. The dissertation allows you to demonstrate your abilities in legal research and develop your knowledge of a certain area.


Entry requirements

The minimum entry requirement is an undergraduate degree classified as not less than a lower-second class honours (2:2) or equivalent. This can be either a law degree or a non-law degree plus further graduate/postgraduate study in Law and in either case must cover the seven foundations of legal knowledge and satisfy the Professional Statement competence. The Bar Standards Board can advise on non-standard qualifications. Bar Course Aptitude Test (BCAT) The Bar Course Aptitude Test is designed to assess your critical reasoning skills, which are an essential attribute to success as a lawyer. It is taken before the Bar Vocational Studies Course, and is a pre-condition to starting the Course. It is administered by the Bar Standards Board. Details of the opening and closing dates of the test are set by the Bar Standards Board and vary from year to year but please note that the final opportunity to take the test before the full-time course is usually in late August and you must have passed it in order to start the course. Places to take the test also fill up so it is important to register to take it as early as possible.


Fees and funding

Tuition fees

EU £19730 Year 1
International £19730 Year 1
England £19730 Year 1
Northern Ireland £19730 Year 1
Scotland £19730 Year 1
Wales £19730 Year 1

Additional fee information

No additional fees or cost information has been supplied for this course, please contact the provider directly.
Bar Vocational Studies (BVS) at City, University of London - UCAS