Vice journalist pens article about gatecrashing a Birkbeck law lecture

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By Alex Aldridge on

Hack uses wiles to experience Birkbeck’s ‘Law Course Choices Day’…for free, but fails to access UCL and LSE.


The law faculty of University of London college Birkbeck has featured in a Vice article about gatecrashing lectures in order to gain a free education.

Unfortunately, judging by the photo (see above) taken by intrepid journalist Euan Coe, he appears to have arrived during a session to help students choose their courses. However, according to Coe, a lecture subsequently got underway and…

“For the next 45 minutes, I learned about the pros and cons of applying economic sanctions to a country. Good luck to the dickhead who tries to economically sanction me.”

As it turned out, this represented one of the high points of Coe’s quest, with the hack failing to gain entry to lectures at UCL (“There are ID barriers everywhere”) and LSE (“This place is basically London’s answer to a Scientology Central Orgricky”).

Vice‘s writing may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but at a time of spiralling university and law school costs, the idea of attempting to gain a free education is an interesting one. How hard would it be, for example, to do the Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL), Legal Practice Course (LPC) or Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) gratis by simply turning up to lectures? And would it be possible to then sit the necessary exams directly through the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) or the Bar Standards Board (BSB)?