The University of Law has launched a Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) with a Master’s degree attached.

The BPTC LLM will be the same length as the no-frills BPTC, and will be on offer from next September at the law school’s Leeds, Birmingham and London Bloomsbury branches.

Students will still be able to take the ‘traditional’ BPTC, but ULaw says the LLM add-on will include “enhanced real-life advocacy training and first-hand experience on legal cases.”

ULaw has so far remained silent on how much the new course will cost, except to say that it will be revealed by the time of the selection event in February.

However, it has significantly cut the cost of its standard BPTC. From September 2017, it will cost£17,500 at ULaw’s London branch – down 8 per cent from £19,070 – and £14,500 in Leeds and Birmingham – down 7.5 per cent from £15,680.

The new course will qualify for postgraduate student loan funding of up to £10,000 via the Student Loan Company, which is currently not available for the standard BPTC. 

ULaw BPTC programme and directorJacqueline Cheltenham said: “Our new BPTC LLM programme has been devised with one main aim in mind: to provide our students with the best chances of securing a highly-coveted pupillage at the Bar. The course is focused on real-life advocacy and litigation experience, with students working on actual legal cases with the support of our qualified supervisors, who are all professional lawyers. In such a highly competitive environment with pupillage increasingly difficult to secure, the new course provides our students with an additional edge.” 

Last week, the Bar Council and the Council of the Inns of Court (COIC) proposed splitting the BPTC into two parts, with attendance at law school not compulsory for the first part.