Inns of Court strike bar course deal with King’s College London

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By Thomas Connelly on

First cohort of budding barristers start this September

The Inns of Court have teamed up with King’s College London to help launch its new bar course, it was announced this morning.

The Inns of Court College of Advocacy (ICCA) — a not-for-profit education and training organisation made up of judges, lawyers and lecturers from all four Inns — confirmed KCL’s Dickson Poon School of Law will act as the validating body for its new, two-part bar course priced at £13,000.

The tie-up means that the ICCA’s first group of budding barristers, who will start this September and are expected to qualify in 2021, will receive their qualification from KCL.

The ICCA says the London uni has been “instrumental” in helping develop part one of the new course, which focuses on criminal and civil litigation, and takes between 12-16 weeks to complete. It is delivered entirely online through interactive forums, practice exercises and assessments, as well as films featuring “real-life” courtroom scenes.

Part two of the course takes between 20-22 weeks to complete and is delivered through face-to-face teaching “within the precincts of the Inns of Court”. This, the ICCA says, will focus on advocacy skills and preparing students for life at the bar.

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Lynda Gibbs, dean at the ICCA, said:

“We are delighted to be announcing this academic partnership with King’s College London and that our students will receive their bar qualification from this prestigious Russell Group university. When we started to develop the ICCA Bar Course, we set out to bring a completely fresh approach to bar training and to deliver an innovative, high quality, flexible and affordable course providing students with a credible qualification to take them into pupillage and beyond.”

A number of big legal players have launched similar, more flexible bar course options in the wake of the BSB’s approval of new training rules aimed at making the route to qualification as a barrister more affordable.

BPP University Law School and its market rival The University of Law have both unveiled similar, cheaper bar courses in recent months, as has City Law School and Nottingham Law School.

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