QUEEN'S UNIVERSITY BELFAST
INSTITUTE OF PROFESSIONAL
UNIVERSITY OF ULSTER
GRADUATE SCHOOL OF PROFESSIONAL LEGAL
Admission to the Institute of Professional Legal Studies of Queen’s University Belfast and the Graduate School of Professional Legal Education of the University of Ulster
Entry conditions and requirements for admission
All applicants must:
1. Hold a recognised degreein law.
All recognised law degrees, irrespective of the awarding university, are
treated on an equal basis. A list of recognised law degrees is attached.
Please note the section at the beginning of that document, showing the
requirements for a recognised law degree. Any applicant who is
studying for (or has obtained) a degree not included on this list, or who
has not met all the requirements for a recognised law degree, should
contact the Institute before 15 November for advice. Not all law
degrees which are recognised in England and Wales are recognised in
INTENDING BAR STUDENTS: please note that you must hold a
degree of NOT LESS THAN SECOND-CLASS HONOURS
All applicants will be required to supply evidence that they have fulfilled
all the requirements for a recognised law degree.
Applicants for admission will be required to sit an Admissions Test and
may be required to attend for interview. The Admissions Test is held
once each year, just before Christmas. Applicants who have been
unsuccessful and who are re-applying for admission must resit the
Applications are available by an online application form via the
University of Ulster’s online application system. Applications will be
open from 1st September 2010 on www.gsple.ulster.ac.uk.
Applications for admission must be made by 15 November in the
calendar year preceding intended commencement of vocational training,
i.e. those hoping to commence bar training at the Institute or a
solicitor’s apprenticeship in any year must apply by 15 November of the
The Institute of Professional Legal Studies
Queen's University Belfast
BELFAST BT9 5BY
Lennoxvale is a turning off the city end of the Malone Road ; 028-9097-5567
The Graduate School of Professional Legal Education
Faculty of Social Sciences
University of Ulster
; 028-7137-5222 or
Fax: 028 7137 5402
RECOGNISED LAW DEGREES for the purposes of
admission to the Institute of Professional Legal Studies of
Queen’s University Belfast and the Graduate School of
Professional Legal Education of the University of Ulster
The degrees appearing on this list are recognised law degrees for the purposes of admission to the Institute of Professional Legal Studies of Queen’s University Belfast and the
Graduate School of Professional Legal Education of the University of Ulster and
qualification for the legal profession in Northern Ireland subject to meeting the following requirements:
(a) that at least two years of the degree must be at degree level;
(b)(i) that for candidates commencing their law degree after 1 September 2003 a full-time
degree should normally be completed within one year of the normal period for completion of a particular programme and
(ii) that a part-time degree should normally be completed within two years of the
normal period for completion of a particular programme.
(iii) that for candidates commencing their law degree after 1 September 2009 an external
or distance learning degree should normally be completed within six years
(iv) that for candidates commencing their law degree after 1 September 2009 a “graduate entry” external or distance learning degree should normally be completed in a minimum of three years.
A degree falling outside the periods prescribed at (b) above will only exceptionally be
recognised by the Council of Legal Education (NI). Exceptional cases should be referred to the Council of Legal Education, with full supporting evidence, to be considered on their merits.
(c) that the following subjects (the “core subjects”) should be included at degree level:
(i) Constitutional Law, Criminal Law, Contract, Tort, Land
Law, Equity, Evidence* and European Law.
(ii) Candidates who began their law degrees before 1 September
1996 may substitute Company Law* in the place of European
(iii)For candidates who commenced their law degrees after September 2001 a
maximum of two core subjects may be taken outside of the law degree.
(iv) For candidates who commenced their law degrees after September 2006 subjects
taken as part of the CPE/GDL or equivalent will be regarded as outside the law
degree even if the awarding university has granted exemptions in respect of
(d) that credit for none of the core subjects listed at (c) above has been obtained through
APEL (accreditation for prior experiential learning).
(e) that candidates who began their law degrees after September 2006 and whose
transcripts show that they have not achieved the relevant pass mark in a core
subject will be required to take and pass an examination of degree standard in that
subject (eg take and pass a module offered as part of a recognised law degree); in
accordance with (c)(iii) above a maximum of two core subjects may be taken outside
the law degree.
(f) that for candidates who began their law degrees after September 2006 the
maximum number of attempts at a core subject examination permitted should
normally be three.
Candidates who have had more than three attempts at a core subject examination
will only be considered in exceptional circumstances. Exceptional circumstances
should be referred to the Council of Legal Education, with full supporting evidence,
to be considered on their merits.
(g) that, in a joint degree, 160 out of 360 credits (for three-year degrees) or 160 out of
480 credits of the degree (for four-year degrees) must be law subjects.
* The Institute holds special examinations each year for trainees who have not
studied Evidence (and/or Company Law if covered by (c) above) as undergraduates.
Details may be obtained from the Institute.
N.B. Candidates’ attention is drawn to the fact that whilst a degree may be recognised for the
purposes of admission , if it does not carry a normal degree classification (ie first class honours, upper second class honours, lower second class honours, third class honours) it may attract a weighting of “0” in the joint’s selection procedures. (Information on the
selection procedures may be obtained from the Institute of Professional Legal Studies and
from the Graduate School of Professional Legal Education. They can also be found on the Institute’s website: www.qub.ac.uk/ipls and the Graduate School’s website:
www.gsple.ulster.ac.uk.). However, in the case of senior status or graduate entry degrees, if a candidate can provide a transcript (confirmed by the degree-awarding institution)