Two universities bin law conversion course as market tightens

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Keele and Hertfordshire law schools announced today that it’s all over for their Graduate Diploma in Law courses


Two universities have ditched the law conversion course in further evidence that falling enrolment is taking its toll.

Law schools at Keele University in Staffordshire and the University of Hertfordshire will be closing their Graduate Diploma in Law courses.

Both universities confirmed earlier media reports, with Keele’s law school chief, Andrew Francis, issuing a statement explaining the university had binned the GDL so it could “strengthen its strategic focus upon its high quality research-led undergraduate and postgraduate programmes”.

Francis continued with a slightly vague reference to the law faculty’s broader goals:

The school’s commitment to an outward facing legal education … remains the highest priority, and all students are supported in realising their ambitions to enter the legal profession through innovative programmes such as the CLOCK scheme, which was designed and is led by the School of Law at Keele.

The community legal outreach collaboration (CLOCK) programme kicked off three years ago. It aims to train law students to qualify as “community legal companions”, who devote a day to the scheme every fortnight.

Hertfordshire’s law school did not issue a comment.

Both moves follow the release last year of statistics indicating a steep decline in popularity of the GDL. Since the global financial crisis, the GDL market has almost crashed — down by nearly 40%.

In 2008-09 there were 2,290 more new applications for the GDL than those made last year — 5,980 compared to 3,690.


The GDL is for ‘spineless’ losers, says Bristol Uni law student [Legal Cheek]


Not Amused

How am I supposed to tell in which direction my legal education faced?


Tug Benson

Come again?



Not surprised in the slightest. The GDL is worse than cancer, and the institutions providing it in London are nothing less than glorified student visa mills for most of Bangladesh and the rest of SE As


Boh Dear

What a balanced and, no doubt, well researched comment.


Cordon Bleu

As a recent GDL graduate from BPP Waterloo, I confirm and wholeheartedly agree with what he said.

Although the GDL-cancer allusion is perhaps a bit too harsh, I find gonorrhoea or a particularly pungent bout of chlamidia more appropriate. Both are perfectly curable if you treat them and remove yourself from the source as far as you can.

Also, make that Pakistan and a variety of obscure African countries, not just Bangladesh.



Believe me, it was even worse before word started to get about that GDLs were a losing propect. The people who started them in 2007-2008 really got shafted: they were simply ditched into a contracting, wildly over-supplied job market.



Hmmm… not completely sure if I’m sold on cancer being preferable to the GDL.



I fail to understand the relevance of a large presence of those from Asia and or Africa. This has no overall bearing on immigration, nor does it provide any competition for those on the GDL who are seeking a training contract (if the above assertion that for those people these institutions are purely visa mills has any credibility.) What a ridiculous couple of bigoted comments.



Trust me, you would if you studied there you’d know what I’m referring to. Some of those malodorous peasants strut around the building as if they owned the place. Thank goodness I’m outta there.



Those ‘peasants’ pay large amounts of money to the university and generally spend a lot on your country while they’re living there, money which isn’t taken out on loans considered ‘spare money’.



Money well spent eh!





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