Bar Course Aptitude Test launched amid student outrage

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  • Typical bar, jobs for the old boys, diversity what a laugh! About time this closed shop was taken to the cleaners and a truely independant organisation put in control of the bar and the law society. Whats even more funny is some of those setting the rules would never be allowed to qualify now as they dont have the academics, I can think of one prominent QC who got a 3rd at uni and others without any degree!

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  • If you want to improve Bar Standards make the entry exam more demanding.

    If you want to raise more money make the entry exam more expensive.

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  • To qualify as a solicitor or barrister in Northern Ireland, you need to be admitted to the Institute of Legal Practice. The fee for admission, which includes a test, costs £200 for early applications, or £255 for later applications. There has been an admissions test fee in Northern Ireland for a long time (not sure how long, but definitely over ten years). Don't get me wrong, the system in Northern Ireland is far from perfect, but what it does do is avoid the horrendous oversupply of people who have forked out thousands upon thousands of pounds for LPC/BPTC equivalent courses without any realistic prospect of actually getting a job. What the BSB is doing is not without precedent, albeit I'll admit it may not be the best system.

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  • BCAT fees – 150

    BPTC fees – over 15,000

    Let’s argue how unfair BSB is? If we win we get a reduction on the 150 pounds. John McClane would be disappointed.

    How about arguing how unfair are BPTC fees compared with the chances of success in the profession?

    How many hours of paid manhandling does a BCAT paper get from its very first steps – i.e. from most probably when a committee is put together to produce the questions to when the results are given? Printing?

    150 for an exam fee does not seem overly expensive to me. Expensive yes but overly expensive certainly not.

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  • It seems the principal purpose of the BCAT is to filter out candidates so bad that the BPTC providers really have no business letting them onto the course in the first place. If that bottom 10% is such a serious problem then the BSB should be taking the providers to task for not doing their job properly (for £17,000+ it doesn't seem unreasonable to expect the providers to provide an appropriate learning environment), not creating an additional cost to every applicant.

    I am also curious how the providers will deal with applicants who've been made an offer, confirmed and paid their deposit but then fail the BCAT.

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  • Howsabout this then: £150 knocked off the cost of the BPTC? Would you be happy then?

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  • I'm 13 and i'm choosing my options at the moment, i am stumped on what to choose, I've always wanted to be lawyer and I don't know what GCSE'S or A-Levels to take? I was thinking, French, History, Business and enterprise, Media and ICT? please help...

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  • There is an alternative approach to restricting the proportion of applicants to the BPTC - that is, raising the minimum degree requirement to a 2.i. This would have less of an impact on diversity as there would be minimal cost implications. Such an approach would also ensure that the best students were selected from whichever university they attended, supporting wider participation in the profession. However, this suggestion has traditionally been opposed due to variability in the academic rigour of universities and the proportions of different degree classes they award.

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