The Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) is a very intensive post graduate course. Watch this video from Northumbria Law to see what it’s like.
Find out a little bit about the course structure and the workload.
When I was looking for law school, I was looking for one that was known to be successful and had staff that were enthusiastic about what they did. A law school with really good links to local firms in thinking of them. I was looking for one that had a good reputation both with employees and with the students alike. I wanted to go somewhere where it was a good city to be in.
GDL stands for the Graduate Diploma in Law and it’s essentially a program that can be taken over one or two years. It allows you to get into a career as a solicitor or a barrister if you don’t have a traditional law degree in your background so anybody with any sort of degree can come onto the Graduate Diploma in Law and then go onto the LPC or the PTC.
I previously studied at Durham University and I did music degree with French.
I studied geography and Newcastle University.
I studied at the University of Leeds and I studied French and German.
I chose Northumbria because I already lived in the Northeast so it was just a brilliant location for me anyway and because it’s got a great reputation amongst all schools that offer it.
I chose to study the GDL at Northumbria it’s got a great reputation amongst the students in a great city and it has got fantastic facilities in this building.
It has a lot of computers so there is always a free computer and there’s a as a library as well which has a lot of resources.
Because you set out with seven different modules in the different areas of the law and then have a further area of law which is like a dissertation you have chance to go and explore the different areas that really interest you.
From September to November each subject has two lectures per week and then from November to the end of May it drops down to one lecture per subject per week. Running alongside we have 10 seminars per subject on a fortnightly cycle so every two weeks you have a seminar in each particular subject.
I really enjoy the seminars because they emphasize the practical application of the law often we’re given fictional scenarios which you could really imagine happening so we get to apply what we learned in the classroom and put into practice, in a real-life situation. That’s great could really help in practice.
At Northumbria law school we have a dedicated law career service so they are able to provide one-to-one help with preparation of CV’s, application letters, interview practice and things like that. So that’s available year-round. In addition we have regular presentations, almost one week, where local and national firms come into the University and give presentations about life as a lawyer and what it takes to secure work experience in a training contract as well.
My tip to anybody looking for a training contract again do your research. You have to know the kind of them that you want to apply to. Look past the Graduate Recruitment pages you have to know the kind of clients, the kind of business the law firms interested in. You have to do with your research and don’t blanket apply, please do pick a handful of firms that have a genuine interest in and concentrate and tailor your application form to those firms.
Today my experience of Northumbria has been 100 percent positive. The lectures have been brilliant back in go to them whenever I need any help and the structure the course is absolutely brilliant as well.
My experience of Northumbria to-date has been fantastic. Everyone is so friendly and everyone really enjoys themselves her.
Stuff like teaching the credit timing of course many them taught it for many years students are really enthusiastic very committed they are focused on their legal careers it’s a really good course to teach on.
For anybody who wants to convert too law I would say definitely go for it. Especially if you’re like me and you a little bit an older student in your career change it but doesn’t matter there’s nothing holding you back. You need to be sure that is what you want to do because it’s hard work and is a big investment, but don’t let anything hold you back.
What I enjoyed most was going into studying the GDL not knowing a single thing and coming out the other end and feeling ready and able to use that knowledge to advise people. It was such a great sense of achievement because it was a very intensive year. And it did require a lot of hard, work, but it really paid off at the end. And what was nice through that process was that we made some good lasting friendships because you’re dropped in at the deep end and have to work together. You come out at the end feeling really proud of yourself knowing that you’ve got a great career ahead of you.