Pathways to Law

The Pathways to Law programme includes a range of events throughout Year 12 and Year 13 to give a real flavour of both studying Law and what it is like to work in the legal profession.

Jump to: About | Eligibility | Programme Structure 

Pathways to Law, Sutton Trust Logo

Applications are open!

Are you a year 12 student?  Thinking about studying Law at University?   Wondering what your options would be after studying?

This two-year programme offers you the opportunity to explore what being a Law student and entering the legal profession might look like.

Applications close on 25th October 2021.

What you can expect

The Pathways to Law programme runs across two years and offers Year 12-13 students an opportunity to find out more about studying a Law degree, university life and application process.  As a student on the programme, you will have the opportunity to attend lectures and workshops designed to improve your critical thinking, overall confidence and help you to prepare a strong UCAS application.  There will be also opportunities to meet professionals from industry and to apply for work experience opportunities.

The 2021 – 2023 programme will initially take place virtually until we are able to deliver face-to-face programming safely. At this point we will transition to a mixed delivery format where in person events run alongside the resources on Sutton Trust Online

The programme delivers a full and varied programme which includes:

• Launch Event – an introductory event for parents and students, to learn more about the programme and the aims and objectives of the scheme.

• Work Placement – students will attend a pre-placement workshop followed by the opportunity to attend work experience.

• A range of skills-based sessions - over the two years, a diverse range of topics including choosing and applying to a university, debating and mooting, essay competitions, writing CVs, cover letters and personal statements, LNAT preparation and admissions interview techniques, teamwork, networking and workshops on different areas of the law.

• Mooting – all students take part in a mock moot trial.

• Law Firm Visit – an opportunity to learn more about life as a solicitor and routes to qualification.

• Inner Temple Visit– an opportunity to learn more about a career as a barrister.

• Open Days - attend Open Days at host university as well as at Pathways to Law partner universities.

• National Conference - Pathways to Law students from across the country attend a four-day residential conference at the University of Warwick packed with talks, activities, and networking opportunities.

• Graduation – all students will attend a graduation ceremony upon completion of the programme.

Plus, access to the Pathways to Law Partner Universities: Bristol, Exeter, Queen Mary, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, LSE, Manchester, Nottingham, Nottingham Trent, Oxford, Roehampton, Warwick.


Am I eligible?

Students applying to Pathways to Law must meet the following criteria:

  • Attend, and have always attended, a state-funded, non-fee-paying school/college
  • Be in Year 12 at the start of the programme
  • If applying for Pathways in person: Live within a reasonable commuting distance of the university, you are applying to. This will normally be one hour’s travel time each way. Please note, this year’s programme may begin online, but we hope to move to face-to-face programming once feasible. There will likely be elements of digital and face-to-face throughout the year. We will continue to follow the governments and each universities’ guidance on this. If you are unsure about this, please contact us.

In addition, we are looking for students who:

  • Have achieved 5 A* – B grades at GCSE (with a minimum of 2 A*
  • or A grades), including grades 9 – 6 in Mathematics and English
  • Would be the first generation in their family to attend university
  • Have been in receipt of Free School Meals whilst at Secondary
  • School
  • Have attended schools with a lower-than-average progression to
  • Higher Education, or a higher-than-average proportion of students
  • who qualify for Free School Meals
  • Live in a neighbourhood with a low rate of progression to higher education or a high level of socio-economic deprivation
  • Have been looked after or in care

The more criteria you meet, the more likely you are to be offered a place on the programme.


The Sutton Trust

The Sutton Trust works with The University of Oxford and other Universities to address the discrepancies within the Legal Industry.  Research undertaken by The Sutton Trust found that 68% of UK-educated barristers and 75% of UK-educated judges attended fee-paying schools, despite the fact that overall, only 7% of young people attend schools and colleges in this sector. This research indicates that young people who attended state schools are significantly underrepresented in high-status positions in the legal profession. 'Pathways to Law' was established to provide state school pupils with the opportunity to gain an insight into university study and legal careers, thus attempting to level the playing field.


How to Apply

Applications are now open for our 9th Cohort.  Information on the selection criteria and application form can be found on The Sutton Trust Website.

Applications close on 25th October 2021.

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