GDip Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL)

Lancashire Law School




Our GDL programme is a conversion course that allows non-law graduates or those with an overseas law degree an opportunity to pursue a career in law. This rigorous and challenging one or two year learning experience – which is commended by employers – can lay the foundations of law knowledge necessary for you to move into legal professions such as becoming a solicitor or barrister. 

Your studies on this course aim to consolidate and enhance your existing intellectual rigour through legal research, reasoning, and argument. You will be equipped with knowledge and experience with foundational legal areas such as contract law, criminal law, and public law as outlined below. You can also develop transferable skills in areas such as oral and written communication, group work, advocacy, critical thinking and more to support you in entering the law professions and throughout your career. 

We aim to consolidate and enhance your intellectual rigour and ability for independent learning through legal research, reasoning, and argument. You will acquire valued transferable skills in areas such as oral and written communication; group work; advocacy; interviewing and negotiation; critical thinking; and presentation skills. Not only will these skills assist you in entering the law profession, they will also assist your continuing development as you progress throughout your career.

This fast track course can facilitate your introduction to the world of law in one year of full time study, or two years part time, meaning you can rapidly move on to the next stage of becoming a solicitor or barrister. The GDL programme may be a fast track course but it can still provide you with the full Law School experience with the facilities and enrichment opportunities of a large University and thriving legal hub.

Studying at Lancashire Law School can grant you a critical awareness of current issues in law, informed by cutting-edge research and practice conducted by our experienced staff – many of whom have spent significant portions of their careers in practice as solicitors, barristers, and managers in legal professions. Lancashire Law School has previously been named a Highly Commended Law School of the Year by the Solicitors Journal Awards. 

The option to study the course online means you can take part in this programme from anywhere with an internet connection giving you the flexibility to study around existing commitments.

We offer the GDL course at a very affordable and competitive rate, whilst still providing the rich array of resources and full module requirements that support your progression on to the law professions.

On successful completion of the GDL you can progress to the next stage of training; either the Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) for those wishing to become barristers, or further training to become a solicitor.

Course Information:

This programme is available for study on a full-time or part-time basis Online via Distance Learning or at the UCLan Preston campus – home of Lancashire Law School.

Students on the programme begin by studying the Legal Skills module, which aims to introduce a foundation of legal knowledge and includes an introductory online workshop prior to commencing the course in full. This provides a solid start to your journey and builds a fluency with the subject material that will empower you to progress through the rest of the GDL course.

Seven foundation modules are also studied, providing a broad insight into the legal knowledge required to prosper in the legal professions. These include: Contract Law, Criminal Law, Law of Torts, Constitutional Law, Equity and Trusts, Land Law, and European Union Law.

You will also submit an Independent Legal Research Project on the topic of your choice, with the full supervision and insight from an academic member of staff within the Lancashire Law School. This is an opportunity to really develop your knowledge and expertise in an area that aligns with your interest and career aspirations, and work closely with academic staff who possess expert knowledge and professional insights.

For full details about our current fees please see our website.

Applicants who are graduates must usually hold a degree in any subject, with a minimum 2:2 grade, from a UK or Republic of Ireland Higher Education Institution; or an overseas institution (subject to approval by the International Admissions process at UCLan).

Applicants who are not graduates may still be considered but are advised to make pre-application contact with the Admissions Tutor to discuss their qualifications and/or work history. In appropriate circumstances the School will call applicants for interview where it is thought necessary that further information might be required to assess the student’s ability to meet the above criteria.

For overseas applicants whose first language is not English or who have received higher education where the medium of instruction is not English, the language requirement is IELTS 6.5 (with no individual component below 6.0) or equivalent qualification.

The course is validated by the Solicitors’ Regulation Authority and the Bar Standards Board. Our LLB provides the first stage of training should you wish to go on to a career as either a solicitor or a barrister. The course is also approved by the Indian Bar Council. 

Our students are valued highly by employers due to their aptitude and skills profile. They have an impressive track record of gaining graduate level jobs or professional training contracts. Our graduates are attractive to a range of employers – solicitors, barristers, company legal advisers, football clubs, insurance companies, HR departments, teachers, criminal justice system, courts, probation service, police officers. Lancashire Law School graduates are much sought after in the workplace.

Some of our eminent alumni include judges, Queen’s Counsel, barristers and solicitors across the UK, Europe and around the world, CEOs, business leaders and industrialists, entrepreneurs and business owners, senior public servants such as civil servants, politicians, senior police and local government officers, senior academics and researchers at all levels, authors of many academic works, leading voluntary sector workers, board representatives and trustees.

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