The College of Law (CoL) is following rival BPP Law School’s lead by launching an accelerated Legal Practice Course (LPC) for all students.
CoL will be offering the condensed course, which lasts only seven months instead of the usual nine, from its Moorgate branch from January 2012. It is hoping to have a second intake in July 2012.
As is the case with BPP, the shorter course will cost the same as the full-length version as students will have the same number of contact hours with tutors. But unlike BPP, which has set a minimum entrance requirement of a 2:1, CoL will accept applications from anyone who meets the Solicitors Regulation Authority’s eligibility criteria.
CoL business development director Sarah Hutchison told Lawyer 2B that the fact that the two biggest LPC providers will be offering accelerated courses does not mean the death of the full-length programme.
“We’re providing flexibility and choice and genuinely believe that many students will continue to opt for the longer course. There’s no way that we’ll be putting pressure on students to complete the accelerated version. The only pressure I can see from the students’ perspective is financial,” said Hutchison.
BPP first rolled out an accelerated LPC in 2009. Initially the course was offered only to trainees joining City LPC consortium firms Freshfields Bruckhaus Deringer, Herbert Smith, Hogan Lovells, Norton Rose and Slaughter and May. The move attracted criticism from students who expressed fears over the creation of a two-tier education.
CoL plans to run accelerated LPCs in all regions it has a presence in by 2012-13.
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