Bar Professional Training Course

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The City Law School is one of the eight institutes to provide the BPTC.

The Bar Professional Training Course or BPTC (previously known as Bar Vocational Course, or BVC) is a postgraduate course which allows graduates to be named and practise as barristers in England and Wales. The eight institutes that run the BPTC along with the four prestigious Inns of Court are often collectively referred to as Bar School.

The BPTC is currently the most expensive legal course in Europe.[1] For the 2016-17 year, some of the London's colleges fees might exceed £20,000.[2]

This academic stage is the first of the three stages of legal education, the second being the vocational stage and the third being the practical stage. Only those who have successfully finished the course and obtained the pupillage by completing twelve qualifying units can be called to the Bar and work as barristers.[3]

Entry requirements[edit]

In addition to pass the Bar Course Aptitude Test (BCAT), the minimum entry requirements for the BPTC is a qualifying a Bachelor of Laws with no less than lower second-class (2:2) honours or a non-law academic degree with lower second-class (2:2) honours alongside the Graduate Diploma in Law.[4]

Besides, applicants for the BPTC should also demonstrate excellent extracurricular activities. A suitable candidate have to provide strong evidence of a commitment to the English Bar. It is important for a candidate to have Common law, European law Civil law and Criminal law reasoning as subjects during their course of studies as LLB students.[5]

In 2014/15:[6]

  • 6.862 applied for the BPTC,
  • 2.520 received a place
  • 55 gained tenancy
  • 571 obtained pupillage
  • 1.857 passed the BPTC
  • 36 failed the BPTC


BPTC Providers
Institution Location Circuit Approx. course fees Report Website
City Law School (one of the seven schools of City University) London South Eastern £17,500 Report City
The University of Law Birmingham, Bristol, Chester, Guildford, London, Manchester and Leeds South Eastern £18,500 full-time – 1 year – September 2014 Report ULaw
BPP Law School London South Eastern £18,000 Report BPP
BPP Law School Leeds Northern £13,785 Report BPP
BPP Law School Manchester Northern £13,785 Report BPP
University of the West of England Bristol Western £12,500 Report BILP
Cardiff University Cardiff Wales & Chester £13,000(local) £15,000(International) Report Cardiff
Nottingham Trent University Nottingham Midland Circuit £13,000 Report Nottingham
Manchester Metropolitan University Manchester Northern £12,500 Report MMU
Northumbria University Newcastle upon Tyne North Eastern £12,350 Report Northumbria

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Fiona Cownie (2010). Stakeholders in the Law School. Hart Publishing. p. 267. ISBN 978-1841137216. 
  2. ^ "BPTC fees to increase again in 2015-16, while the Bar recruits fewer than 500 new barristers a year". 1 May 2015. Retrieved 16 May 2015. 
  3. ^ Adam Kramer (2007). Bewigged and Bewildered: Pupillage and a Career at the Bar. Hart Publishing. ISBN 1-84113-651-4. 
  4. ^ Entry Requirement, BPTC
  5. ^ Gary Slapper and David Kelly (2013). The English Legal System. Routledge. p. 798. ISBN 978-0415639989. 
  6. ^ Standards Board statistics

External links[edit]