Scottish Law Soc shakes up legal training

The Law Society of Scotland has announced plans to scrap its current Professional Competence Course (PCC) for trainees in favour of a new Continuing Professional Development (CPD) programme.

It is planned that from 2011, all trainees in Scotland will no longer have to take time out of their training contract to study the PCC at university, but will instead, be able to spread the new 60-hour Trainee CPD over two years.

Deputy director of education and training policy Collette Paterson said: “The mechanics of Trainee CPD, including activities that will qualify and how the 60 hours should be constituted over two years, is currently being developed by a working party, which is bearing flexibility and cost in mind.”

At the moment there are two main routes to qualifying as a solicitor in Scotland. Candidates either take the LLB course at a university, or undertake a three year period of work-based training, during which the society’s own exams are taken.

Those following either of these routes then undertake a Diploma in Legal Practice (similar to the Legal Practice Course) and a two year traineeship with a solicitor, supplemented by the PCC.