Bar Training Course (LLM)

Cardiff University
1 year
Full time
Master's degree
Scholarships available

About this program

Bar Training Course (LLM)

Our LLM Bar Training Course offers intensive, postgraduate-level studies to those who wish to qualify as a barrister but who also wish to undertake research at Master;s level. This course is taken after undergraduate study and before the period of work-based learning, known as pupillage.

This programme enables you to acquire the skills, knowledge of procedure and evidence for you to meet the Bar Standards Board (BSB) criteria, as set out in their Professional Statement for Barristers.

Our programme aims to foster a professional and ethical approach to practice as a barrister, whilst giving you an informed view of a barrister;s working life and the opportunity to reflect on the challenges facing the legal profession in today's world.

The teaching is timetabled between Monday and Thursday (i.e. no more than four days), to provide time for personal study. Advocacy and conferencing will be taught intensively in two-hour sessions to no more than six students. You will also be able to undertake a specialist advocacy option.

Admission requirements

The LLM Bar Training Course (LLM BTC) is suitable for graduates in Law or any other subject in combination with the relevant &conversion course; (CPE/GDL). Applicants should show a commitment to the legal profession, specifically practice at the Bar (e.g. via placements, mooting competitions, public speaking).

To enrol on the course you need to have:

  • Completed your academic stage;
  • Obtained a 2:1 class degree or higher (a 2.2 class degree will be considered on a case-by-case basis taking into consideration the application in its entirety);
  • Been admitted as a student member of one of the four Inns of Court;
  • Satisfied the English language requirement; and
  • Passed the Bar Aptitude test.

English Language Requirements:

  • IELTS with an overall score of 7.5 with at least 7.5 in all subskills
  • or Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic with an overall score of 73 and at least 73 in all communicative skills.

You must have taken the test within two years of the course start date and all required scores must have been achieved in one sitting of the test.

Does this course require proof of English proficiency?

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Program content

Year One

  • Civil Litigation
  • Criminal Litigation, Evidence and Sentencing
  • Conference Skills
  • Opinion Writing
  • Drafting
  • Trial Advocacy 1
  • Trial Advocacy 2
  • Submission Advocacy
  • Professional Ethics
  • Legal Research

Scholarships & funding

For more information about scholarships, please visit the university website.


  • Tuition fees for UK Students: £18,700 per year.
  • Tuition fees for International Students: £20,700 per year.

For more information about tuition fee, please visit the university website.


The Learning Outcomes for this Programme can be found below:

Knowledge Understanding:

On successful completion of the Programme you will be able to:

  • Critically reflect and synthesize the rules and procedures of civil litigation, dispute resolution and criminal litigation to be competent to progress to the pupillage/work-based learning component of training to be a barrister;
  • Critically reflect and synthesize the principle aspects of law and procedure relevant to your professional practice as a barrister;
  • Review and synthesize the core duties and regulatory requirements set down by the Bar Standards Board including the Code of Conduct;
  • Apply different methodologies and perspectives within legal scholarship to critically review current issues/debates in legal practice.

Intellectual Skills:

On successful completion of the Programme you will be able to:

  • Critically review the rules and procedures of civil litigation, dispute resolution and criminal litigation to reflect and apply a range of appropriate solutions for your client;
  • Critically analyse and evaluate complex information to make professional judgements which demonstrate an understanding of the short and long term implications of the judgements made;
  • Critically review methods and techniques of legal study to elucidate and evaluate yours and others; research and expert opinion.

Professional Practical Skills:

On successful completion of the Programme you will be able to:

  • Take responsibility, exercising autonomy and professional judgment, for planning and preparing a case effectively, critically reflecting on the relevant law and facts whilst observing the rules of professional conduct;
  • Ensure your professional judgement is informed by appropriate critical analysis, synthesis and evaluation and where appropriate identify and evaluate the consequences of different options;
  • Author and articulate fluently, using correct and appropriate vocabulary and English grammar, in order to present, to a range of audiences, a reasoned argument in a clear, logical, succinct and persuasive way;
  • Critically reflect on appropriate research methods and resources in order to prepare a research project or reflective portfolio.

Transferable/Key Skills:

All of the skills noted above are relevant employability skills for professional practice. You will also practise and develop the following transferable skills:

Self-management &You will be required to plan and manage your time in order to undertake the workload required for the individual BTC modules;

Self-reflection - You will be provided with guidance to assist you with developing your ability to critically reflect on your performance, make use of constructive feedback and identify how your performance can be improved;

Application of IT - You will be required to make use of basic IT skills such as word processing to prepare written communication, which is clear, accurate and produced to professional standards. You will use and apply information technology to undertake relevant and comprehensive legal research.

Application of numeracy - You will be required to undertake some simple mathematical calculations and make use of these calculations during their verbal and written communication.

Social and cultural awareness - You will develop an appreciation of the social context in which the law operates, the other professionals involved and the principles of inter-disciplinary working.

Career paths

After completion of the BTC, you will be able to be Called to the Bar and undertake pupillage. The BTC may also lead to legal work in some other capacity, e.g. paralegal, with the option of obtaining pupillage at a later date.

The option to complete a research project or reflective portfolio has the potential to increase your engagement in pro bono activities within the School or further your skills of independent research thereby increasing your preparedness for practice.

In addition, there is a growing need in the public and private sectors for students who can demonstrate being different to other graduates and who can offer something more to potential employers. You will learn important skills that will set you apart in the job market: resilience and the importance of being a reflective practitioner, how to write and critically reason, how to write for and engage the reader, and how to understand the impact of your research.

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About this institute

Cardiff University

Cardiff University is among the top 25 universities in the UK and is ranked 154th in the world. Founded in 1883, Cardiff University combines a prestigious heritage with impressive modern facilities, on one of the most beautiful campuses in the UK....

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Contact info

Cardiff University

CF10 3AT Cardiff

Phone no: +442920874432

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