Block LPCs planned for law colleges

The College of Law is planning to abandon its part-time Legal Practice Course (LPC) at two sites in favour of a block learning system.

The course, which runs one weekend a month over two years at the same cost as a part-time course, will be implemented at the College of Law's Chester and York institutes subject to final approval by the LPC board at the Law Society, expected in February.

Maurice Cook, director of external affairs at De Montfort University, says, however, that part-time LPC courses in general have failed to be successful due to diminishing local demand.

He says: “I suspect that in five years' time, block release is the way that learning will go.”

Stella Smith, head of marketing at the College of Law says: “The block course fits in better with different people in different circumstances.”

Block learning systems sprang up in 1993 after a review of the LPC was completed by the Law Society in the same year with De Montfort University, Nottingham and Trent University and the University of the West of England being the first to introduce block courses.

Bob White, director of graduate development at Nottingham School of Law says: “The review enlarged the course by about 15 per cent so block release gave us more time to fit everything in.”