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Law conversion courses


Whether you want to qualify as a solicitor, a barrister, a CILEX Lawyer or if you have not yet decided which route you want to take, a law conversion course will provide you with a solid foundation in law to enable you to continue your journey towards qualification.

What is a law conversion course?

A law conversion aims to provide non-law graduates with the same level of legal knowledge and skills as an LLB law graduate. It is, therefore, an intensive course, effectively condensing a three year law degree into a one year full-time course (or two years part-time).

For a non-law student, a law conversion is a good way to get ahead as it will give you a strong foundation, and academic background, in law before you go on to the next stage of your qualification journey to become a solicitor, barrister, CILEX Lawyer or another role in the legal profession.

There are a variety of law conversion courses on offer from those at post-graduate diploma level to masters.

Is a law conversion course suitable for me?

A law conversion course, such as a GDL or PgDL, is suitable for UK and overseas applicants with a degree in any subject (including those with a non-UK law degree), wishing to take their first steps in UK law at post-graduate level. Whether you are seeking to qualify as a barrister, solicitor, CILEX Lawyer or you are not yet sure which law path you want to take, a law conversion will provide you with a solid foundation upon which to start your qualification journey.

If you are applying for a GDL/law conversion course, be sure to check the eligibility requirements and the course outcome so that you are clear about what you will need to do after you complete the course in order to progress your qualification.

Is there a difference between a GDL and a PGDL?

The GDL and PGDL are both law conversion courses which are designed to bring those who have not previously studied law up to the same knowledge level as law graduates. 

Both are suitable for non-law graduates who want to qualify as either a solicitor or a barrister. And both are also suitable for those looking to fast-track to the CILEX Professional Qualification (CPQ) Advanced Stage by enrolling on the CILEX Graduate Qualification to become a CILEX Lawyer

While the GDL, however, is more tailored towards the LPC route to qualification as a solicitor, the new PGDL courses are more aligned to the Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE) and will include extra modules such as legal skills and company law, which are required for the SQE 1 assessment.

A GDL will cover the seven Foundations of Legal Knowledge:

Contract law
Criminal law
Equity and Trusts
European Union
Land Law
Public law
Tort law

In a PGDL, you will still cover these but will also cover the areas tested in the SQE 1 assessment which are divided into Functioning Legal Knowledge (FLK) 1 and 2.


Business Law and Practice (which includes Company Law)
Dispute Resolution
Legal System of England and Wales 
Constitutional and Administrative Law
EU Law and Legal Services 


Property Practice
Wills and the Administration of Estates
Solicitors Accounts
Land Law
Criminal Law and Practice

What can I do after a law conversion course?

On completion of a law conversion course, those wishing to qualify as a solicitor could go on to do a course more specifically geared towards preparing for the SQE assessments (if SQE preparation has not been included in the law conversion) while those wanting to qualify as a barrister can apply for a Bar training course (BTC).

Read more about qualifying as a barrister.

To learn more about qualifying as a solicitor through the SQE, visit our SQE section as well as our section on how to prepare for the SQE assessments.

A GDL also enables you to enter the CILEX Professional Qualification (CPQ) at the CPQ Advanced stage through the CILEX Graduate Qualification (CGQ). Find out more about qualifying as a lawyer through CILEX.



Looking for a law conversion course?


Use our course finder to find out more information about the different courses that you can apply for through LawCAB.

When you are ready to make your application, sign up for an account or login to your account on LawCAB to create your online GDL application form. 

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Law conversion course FAQs

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