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Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) (Distance Learning)
Postgraduate course
PG Dip

Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL) (Distance Learning)

Law
Applications for September entry should be made by 31 July and for January entry by 14 December. Applications after these dates may still be considered.
International Scholarships available

Overview

This course will enable you to enter the legal profession if you do not have a first degree in law. Delivered through our Virtual Learning Environment, this qualification and our LLM Qualifying Law Degree cover the key foundation subjects needed to complete the academic stage of your training to become a solicitor or barrister as required by the major professional bodies in law.

Changes to legal education and training
Legal education and training is currently under detailed review by professional regulators in the legal sector. The review will examine the routes currently open and the qualifications required to become a solicitor or barrister, and includes a reflection on changes to and removal of existing routes, as well as the possibility of establishing new ones. 

Currently, students can complete a qualifying law degree, the Graduate Diploma Law (GDL) and then the Legal Practice Course (LPC) to qualify as a solicitor or Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC) to become a barrister; this will remain unchanged until August 2020 for solicitors and August 2019 for barristers. 

The Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA) and the Bar Standards Board (BSB) have issued a common protocol for guidance. This can be found by visiting the SRA website

You will learn using our Virtual Learning Environment, supported by academic staff with extensive teaching and legal experience. Choosing to study this flexible distance learning course enables you to fit your learning around your current lifestyle and commitments.

Leeds Law School regularly welcomes guest speakers in prominent legal positions and you will be able to access their lectures digitally if you are unable to attend on-campus. You will be able to hear from experts like Catherine Dixon, Chief Executive of The Law Society for England and Wales, discuss what the future might have in store for the solicitors' profession.

Our Careers Service is on hand to support you with all aspects of planning your career, including writing your CV, job applications and how to make the most of industry and graduate fairs.

"Studying for my GDL online has been a great way of taking my education to the next level as it fits in with my working life. The support I have received from the Leeds Law School staff, in particular the learning support tutors, has been fantastic and they are always on hand to offer support/guidance. The learning support tutors have made this experience must less daunting and are quick to answer questions that I have at a moment's notice." (Ella Thomas, student).  

"There was excellent support and resources provided by the facilitating staff. Even though I'm on the other side of the "pond", I was able to receive the support I needed to complete my coursework." (Christian Browne, student).

We understand that full-time study does not suit everyone. That’s why we offer courses which give you the opportunity to decide where, when and how you can get involved in learning. Studying a distance learning course offers the convenience and flexibility to make education work for you. Whether you’d like to fit your studies around childcare, develop your skills while working or, quite simply, want to learn from the comfort of your own home, we can help you gain a qualification at a time and pace that suits your lifestyle.

Like our students on campus, you will have the same excellent teaching and learning resources, however you’ll find these online instead of in a lecture theatre. Not only are all the modules taught online, but you will also have access to an online community and more than 140,000 books and journals in our online library.

Visit our Distance Learning Website

This course offers the opportunity to take a ‘sandwich’ year – a year of paid employment in industry which will build your skills and experience. This is usually taken between the second and third year of your degree, typically making your course four years in total.

Students who choose the sandwich route find it helps with both their studies and getting a job after graduation. It can build your confidence, contacts, and of course your CV. Leeds Beckett advertise lots of placement opportunities and provide support in helping you find the right placement for you.

Transforming law: "We must ensure that our legal education keeps pace with social, economic, technological and political evolution." - Deveral Capps - Leeds Law School / "Well designed law degrees provide a unique skillset that means our students can make a real contribution in a changing world" - Dr Jessica Guth - Leeds Law School-
Play Postgraduate Study - Invest in yourself Video
Postgraduate Study - Invest in yourself

 

Entry Requirements

Requirements


Applicants should either have at least a second class honours degree or have equivalent experience or training, normally from within the work environment.
Students wishing to undertake the Graduate Diploma of Law degree for the purpose of qualification as a barrister must:
  • Hold a UK/Republic of Ireland degree, awarded at or above 2:2; or
  • Have been granted a Certificate of Academic Standing by the Bar Standards Board on the basis of an overseas degree or a non-standard UK/Republic of Ireland degree; or
  • Have been approved by the Bar Standards Board Qualifications Committee as suitable for admission as a mature student.
All applications should be supported by a reference, either academic or professional; a template can be accessed at this link. All applicants should satisfy our University English language requirements, please access further details at this link
IELTS:
IELTS 6.0 with no skills below 5.5, or an equivalent qualification The University provides excellent support for any applicant who may be required to undertake additional English language courses.
Mature Applicants
Our University welcomes applications from mature applicants who demonstrate academic potential. We usually require some evidence of recent academic study, for example completion of an access course, however recent relevant work experience may also be considered. Please note that for some of our professional courses all applicants will need to meet the specified entry criteria and in these cases work experience cannot be considered in lieu. If you wish to apply through this route you should refer to our University Recognition of Prior Learning policy that is available on our website. Please note that all applicants to our University are required to meet our standard English language requirement of GCSE grade C or equivalent, variations to this will be listed on the individual course entry requirements.

Careers

Phil Robinson

Careers

Phil Robinson
Associate Solicitor and Notary Public Langleys Solicitors LLP

Legal Practice Course

“I considered other options when choosing where to study for my masters but I knew from past experience I could rely on Leeds Beckett to thoroughly prepare me for the workplace. I'm now a solicitor specialising in conveyancing and the advanced expertise I developed on my course helps me to succeed in my role every day.

Teaching and learning

Leeds Law School works with a number of Distance Learning Promotion Partners who can offer advice and guidance about the Distance Learning Courses. The partners include:

The Chancery Lane Institute for Professionals (Dubai)

Q&A Consultants (Pakistan) 

London College of Legal Studies (Bangladesh).

Overall workload

Each module on our distance learning courses is individually designed to maximise your learning so study requirements will vary. As a guideline you will need to allocate around 10 hours per week to complete each module plus a further five hours for additional reading and assignments. These 10 hours of teaching and learning will be delivered using a range of interactive resources, this typically includes audio and video content, group discussions, reflective exercises, quizzes, online reading and much more. All these resources are delivered through our Virtual Learning Environment and can be accessed at a time and place that suits you.

This module will introduce you to the fundamental concepts underpinning English law, to the institutions of the English legal system and to the main sources of English law.

Study the different organs of the state and their relationship to each other and the individual. You will focus on constitutional law including key ideas such as separation of powers, rule of law, parliamentary sovereignty and the royal prerogative.

Understand the general principles of law governing criminal responsibility set within their social context, the concept of moral responsibility and the philosophy of punishment.

Study the role of the law in defining, creating, imposing, regulating and enforcing freely negotiated and agreed contractual obligations between two or more contracting parties.

Examine civil law liability for a wrong or 'tort', including negligence, occupier's liability and trespass to the person, considering how tort protects reputation and personal integrity.

Study the fundamental issues relating to the concept of property, its ownership, and the rights and obligations created by the ownership of land.

Develop your critical thinking, legal research and writing skills by undertaking a research project. You will research your chosen area and write up your analysis with the support of a supervisor.

Learn how and why trusts are created, their different and legal frameworks, the principles of equity affecting their creation and the use of trusts in practice.

Explore the founding principles of the law of the European Union to enable critical understanding of the nature and purpose of European developments and regulations.

Leeds Beckett University
Rebecca Hopkinson
Senior Lecturer
Choosing the LLM Master of Laws England & Wales at Leeds Beckett will enable you to meet the academic requirements set by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and the Bar Standards Board for qualification as a lawyer and gain a masters qualification.
Play Postgraduate Study - Invest in yourself Video
Postgraduate Study - Invest in yourself

 

Fees & funding

The tuition fees for this course, for applicants commencing their course in the 201920 academic year, are yet to be set at this time. These fee rates will be set in October 2018. Should you wish to view the fee charges for this course for the previous year you can do so by changing the entry point to September 2018 in the 'Start Date' section of this page above.

Tuition fees
Your tuition fees cover the cost of registration, tuition, academic supervision, assessments and examinations.
The following are also included in the cost of your course:

  • Access to our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) is where you’ll find your modules, teaching materials, reading lists, discussion boards and assessment information
  • Library membership, giving access to more than 500,000 printed, multimedia and digital resources, with many books and journals available in an online format

In addition, for those students who are able to visit us on campus in Leeds the following is also provided free of charge:

  • 24/7 Library and student IT support
  • Free wifi via eduroam
  • Skills workshops and resources
  • Access to software, including five free copies of Microsoft Office 365 to install on your PC, laptop and MAC, and access to free high-end software via the Leeds Beckett remote app
  • Loan of high-end media equipment to support your studies

Other study-related expenses to consider: books (the library stocks books from your module reading list but you may wish to purchase copies for yourself); placement costs (these may include travel expenses and living costs); student visas (international students only); printing, photocopying and stationery; field trips; study abroad opportunities (travel costs and accommodation, visas and immunisations); PC/laptop (provided on campus in social learning spaces and in the library. However, you may prefer to have your own); mobile phone/tablet (to access University online services); academic conferences (travel costs); professional-body membership (where applicable); and graduation (gown hire and guest tickets).

This list is not exhaustive and costs will vary depending on the choices you make during your course. Any rental or living costs are also in addition to your course fees

 

The tuition fees for this course, for applicants commencing their course in the 201920 academic year, are yet to be set at this time. These fee rates will be set in October 2018. Should you wish to view the fee charges for this course for the previous year you can do so by changing the entry point to September 2018 in the 'Start Date' section of this page above.

Tuition fees
Your tuition fees cover the cost of registration, tuition, academic supervision, assessments and examinations.
The following are also included in the cost of your course:

  • Access to our Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) is where you’ll find your modules, teaching materials, reading lists, discussion boards and assessment information
  • Library membership, giving access to more than 500,000 printed, multimedia and digital resources, with many books and journals available in an online format

In addition, for those students who are able to visit us on campus in Leeds the following is also provided free of charge:

  • 24/7 Library and student IT support
  • Free wifi via eduroam
  • Skills workshops and resources
  • Access to software, including five free copies of Microsoft Office 365 to install on your PC, laptop and MAC, and access to free high-end software via the Leeds Beckett remote app
  • Loan of high-end media equipment to support your studies

Other study-related expenses to consider: books (the library stocks books from your module reading list but you may wish to purchase copies for yourself); placement costs (these may include travel expenses and living costs); student visas (international students only); printing, photocopying and stationery; field trips; study abroad opportunities (travel costs and accommodation, visas and immunisations); PC/laptop (provided on campus in social learning spaces and in the library. However, you may prefer to have your own); mobile phone/tablet (to access University online services); academic conferences (travel costs); professional-body membership (where applicable); and graduation (gown hire and guest tickets).

This list is not exhaustive and costs will vary depending on the choices you make during your course. Any rental or living costs are also in addition to your course fees

 

Facilities

  • Virtual Learning Environment
    Virtual Learning Environment

    The VLE gives you access to course materials such as videos, e-books and other documents. You also use it to submit your assignments and to receive feedback.

  • Library and online resources
    Library and online resources

    Our Library is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, every day of the year, providing you with access to specialist books and journals, learning spaces, computers, multimedia facilities and media equipment hire. Tens of thousands of our Library's digital resources, including ebooks, ejournals and databases, can be accessed online at a time and place to suit you.

  • Dedicated Support Team
    Dedicated Support Team

    Just because you aren't learning on campus doesn't mean you'll have to cope on your own - you'll have the support of a personal tutor along with the University's Student Hub and Wellbeing Centre. They are on hand to offer you advice about everything from academic issues to stress and anxiety.

Location

Home to our first-rate sporting facilities – Headingley Campus has a rich and diverse history having played to visitors such as Winston Churchill and Oscar Wilde. Set in 100 acres of parkland, with easy access to Leeds city centre, many of our buildings look out onto our grassy acre – a perfect place for hanging out, playing games and catching up with friends on long summer days. Headingley Campus has modern sport science laboratories, animation and music studios and the latest computing labs, as well as one of our libraries, open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. It is not every university that can offer you the chance to study in the best tall building in the world. But we can. Our City Campus is home to such award-winning learning environments as Broadcasting Place, voted best tall building in the world in 2010. Other buildings include the Rose Bowl, home to our Business School, which was awarded Best Commercial Property Development in the 2009 Yorkshire Property awards. Just over the road from the Rose Bowl is the Leslie Silver building which houses one of our impressive libraries across five floors. The library is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week throughout the year.

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Want to know more?

Start exploring

We host a range of on campus and virtual open days throughout the year, giving you the opportunity to discover life at Leeds Beckett University. Find out more about your course, financing your studies, our range of accommodation and the vibrant city of Leeds.

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