Student president labels five per cent rise in LLB applications “promising”

The president of the UK Law Students Association (UKLSA) has responded to the rise in applications to read law.

UCAS figures released on Wednesday show a 5.3 per cent rise from last year.

Thomas Innes said: “The latest UCAS figures are very promising. Increasing levels of understanding of the workings of the English legal system are bound to have a positive effect on communities as the current generation of university students progress… even in the event that not all those studying law choose to continue this into practice.”

Innes said that it was difficult to pin down one reason for law’s increasing popularity but highlighted the recognition that law could lead to all law-related careers, rather than just work as a barrister or solicitor and the increasing appreciation that law is a subject with strong, transferable skills relevant to a wide variety of non-legal roles.

He added: “Graduates with law degrees are exceptionally well placed in the job market, even where the sector that they are targeting is not law. The study of law inherently involves the development of essential competencies that are attractive to a wide variety of employers.

“More law graduates results in more individuals who are capable of woking in Citizens Advice Bureau’s or for organisations such as FRU, and having litigants in person with a degree-level understanding of law could prove essential to relaxing the effects of this potential crisis.”

A spokesperson for the Association of Law Teachers said of the increase: “Law is an excellent discipline to develop critical thinking skills which can be transferred to a number of different working environments and prepares students well to be useful and active citizens.”

In 2011, more than 103,613 students applied via UCAS to read law. This year, that number rose by 5,527 to 109,140. Overall, there was a 3.5 per cent rise in university applications to nearly 2.5m.