Whether you choose to do an LLB or the GDL, you'll learn a lot about the different types of law. Both qualifications are divided into seven core sections, which you might have figured out comprise the main areas of law. But this is just the beginning! If you do the LLB, you'll have the opportunity to study other areas of law: there are so many options out there, and a lot to take in before you can properly start your law career.
Whilst the most popular areas of law are covered in every degree, such as criminal law and equity and trusts, there are opportunities for students and future lawyers to closely specialise in something or go completely off-piste, such as shipping law or sports and media law. The wide variety of options means there is something for nearly everyone out there, with some students even opting to go into further study with an LLM in order to fully get to grips with their new area.
It's worth getting your head around these areas if you're looking for a vacation scheme or a training contract – a recruiter wouldn't be too impressed if you're applying for work experience in Islamic Finance Law and are unaware of what 'Shari'a' means! It would also help you to have an idea of what you can do outside of the Magic Circle law firms; competition in these areas is fierce, and it would help you to consider branching out. You might find your perfect career in an area you didn't even know about.
The area of law that you choose will determine which firms you can apply to, and this will determine your career opportunities. If you want to end up in the City, or are thinking about a career that will get you abroad, you'll need to make sure that you don't end up specialising in something too niche.
The modules you studied during your law degree are what are referred to as 'core areas', whilst these new and exciting areas are 'electives'. You can see which of the two sections each area is divided into below, along with more information about each. Happy researching!
Squire Patton Boggs
Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester £250 p/w, London £265 p/w
Birmingham, Leeds, London, Manchester
Shearman & Sterling
London (with overseas secondment opportunities in: Abu Dhabi, Brussels, Singapore, New York)
1st year - £36,000