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The University of Southampton
Careers and Employability ServiceStudents

Routes into Law

Many students successfully pursue a career in law following their first degree.

Non-law students who want to become a solicitor or barrister need to complete a law conversion course. Recognised qualifications include the Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL). To overcome financial implications associated with the GDL (students are not eligible for a postgraduate student loan with the GDL), some course providers are offering level 7 conversion courses (such as the MA Law and PGDL). These courses are not to be confused with other level 7 Law courses (such as the LLM) which are not law conversion courses.

PLEASE NOTE: From September 2021 the routes into law are going to change – known as the Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQE). The SQE will introduce an independent and centralised assessment approach to the training route to become a solicitor and will no longer require non-law students to complete a law conversion course (such as the GDL). If wishing to get into law, please research the different routes into law and the changes that the SQE will bring.

For more information go to:

Prospects - Law Conversion Courses

All About Law - Law Conversion Courses - MA

BPP Law Conversion Course

Please do your research to ensure the conversion course is suitable for you and your career aims.

Visit Prospects for information providing an overview of the law sector, law vacation schemes and graduate jobs in law.


Free legal-related employment directories and publications are available to take away from the Careers Centre, these provide useful information on all aspects of getting into a career in law including listings for law courses and recruiting law firms. For example, The Beginner’s Guide to a Career in Law, which is also available on the LawCareers.Net website.

A careers talk on routes into Law is delivered as part of the Careers Events programme in the Autumn term.  The session will be available to book via the MyCareer Events Calendar and will take place before the Law School Careers Fair in November. Non-graduates are welcome to attend the fair by registering as instructed below.

Keep Up To Date - Join our Mailing List:

We operate a mailing list for non-law students interested in a career in law. The mailing list will provide relevant information about law related events that are taking place during the academic year.

To join this mailing list please email with the following information and mark the subject line of your email "Law Careers Mailing List for non-law students":

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