Cardiff Uni launches GDL despite drop in student numbers

Cardiff University has confirmed plans to enter the Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) market despite a massive drop in the number of law conversion students at rival institutions.

The move follows Sheffield University’s decision to run the GDL from September 2011 as reported by Lawyer2B.com in Febraury (read more).

Head of Centre for Professional Legal Studies at Cardiff, Angela Devereux, said: “It’s a departure for an institution like us, but for us in the forefront for offering professional training it’s the most natural thing to do. We already offer the Legal Practice Course (LPC) and Bar Professional Training Course so this is the final part of the armoury to offer any graduate the opportunity to succeed in staying with us and hopefully become a solicitor or barrister.”

Cardiff’s decision to roll out the GDL comes at a time when both GDL and LPC enrolments across amost all providers have seen a significant drop, with Cardiff suffering a 25 per cent slump in the number of students on its LPC (read more).

The contraction in the GDL market has also resulted in Southampton Solent University, and the universities of Sunderland and Wolverhampton being forced to pull the plug on their courses (read more).

Devereux added: “You’re always going to be concerned that you will be working in a market that will be reduced. But if you’re offering a quality product in an institution that is trusted then it is certainly not something that would put us off at all.”

The university hopes to recruit about 40 students onto the GDL when it is introduced in September 2012. The cost of the course will be confirmed in September 2011.

The course is subject to validation by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.