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I aiming to become a Barrister, but fear I've made a mistake.

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    I have not yet made any formal decisions about becoming a Barrister or applying for The Bar because I am just about to start university.

    I have applied for a BA in Sociology and Criminology (HONS). I chose this course because of my profound interest in these areas of study, however I did decide on this coure partly due to my belief that I would gain a better skill set when wanting to go down the route of applying for The Bar. A large part of this train of though is due to various teachers and other professionals telling me that a Law degree isn't the best route for entering the legal profession.

    Like I said, I am yet to make a formal decisions about this venture, but I fear that my beliefs maybe wrong, and that there is a possibility that I have made a mistake in applying for Sociology and Criminology instead of doing a Law degree.

    Any advice on my concerns would be appreciated.
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    Excuse the spelling mistakes
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    The truth is you're unlikely to make it. I say this just based on your spelling and grammar. Truth is the Bar is immensely difficult to get into and I'm not going to sugarcoat it for you. If you get a first, then you probably can - but bear in mind a first is becoming more and more a prerequisite nowadays. The regions can be less competitive.
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    (Original post by iamjeeoh)
    I have not yet made any formal decisions about becoming a Barrister or applying for The Bar because I am just about to start university.

    I have applied for a BA in Sociology and Criminology (HONS). I chose this course because of my profound interest in these areas of study, however I did decide on this coure partly due to my belief that I would gain a better skill set when wanting to go down the route of applying for The Bar. A large part of this train of though is due to various teachers and other professionals telling me that a Law degree isn't the best route for entering the legal profession.

    Like I said, I am yet to make a formal decisions about this venture, but I fear that my beliefs maybe wrong, and that there is a possibility that I have made a mistake in applying for Sociology and Criminology instead of doing a Law degree.

    Any advice on my concerns would be appreciated.
    The Bar is uber-competetitive, short of topping your year for a subject at Oxbridge there is no real way of giving yourself academics that are a pupillage 'guarantee'.

    Ultimately the best academic skill set you can have for the Bar will likely be a First from a 'top' uni (RG/most 1994) in any subject. However, the Bar more often concerns complex legal arguments, as opposed to solicitors who handle more procedural stuff, and learning these is best done through academic study of law in a law degree. The Catch 22 is that Law is notoriously hard to get a First in.

    Law would also open up opportunities like mooting with the Uni Law Society, internally and externally, and these are good stuff for aspiring barristers.
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    I disagree that a first is a pre-requisite for the bar, the vast majority of those that obtain pupillage have 2.1's; the statistics speak for themselves. Nevertheless, extra - curriculars are key, particularly ones which show that you're actually capable of advocating - specifically, FRU. roh is right about doing the LLB, it's more academic and moreover it makes financial sense as you won't have to fork out for the GDL. But remember, only around 1 in 6 people who complete the BPTC will ever gain pupillage.
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    (Original post by anaplian)
    I disagree that a first is a pre-requisite for the bar, the vast majority of those that obtain pupillage have 2.1's; the statistics speak for themselves. Nevertheless, extra - curriculars are key, particularly ones which show that you're actually capable of advocating - specifically, FRU. roh is right about doing the LLB, it's more academic and moreover it makes financial sense as you won't have to fork out for the GDL. But remember, only around 1 in 6 people who complete the BPTC will ever gain pupillage.
    Sorry I didn't mean a First is a pre-requisite (which I realise it does sound a bit like) just that the only way to make your academics stand out from the crowd is to get a First. A 2:1 will do the job of keeping you in the race no doubt, but you'd have to stand out more for what you've done on the extra curricular side of things.

    Forgot about the cost of GDL for the Bar too, definitely makes LLB more appealing.
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    I did a Law Degree but I'm going down the other route towards the LPC so I can become a solicitor. Its tough either route especially in this economic climate. For solicitors its all about getting a training contract by any means. Barristers and entering the Bar is a different kettle of fish altogether. You will have to have an outstanding academic record to not only stand out from the crowd but to even have your application looked at.

    However in relation to your degree choice it is possible to go through with a degree in other subjects and still become a barrister just you will not only need the degree and grades to get in you need to have a wealth of other skills to prove you're a brilliant candidate, work experience is key here and volunteering and such its all about how you come across on paper that will get you considered.

    So don't fret choose the path YOU want to take and do something thats actually going to interest you. I believe that passion is an important factor when choosing a career so go for it!
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    (Original post by Rancorous)
    The truth is you're unlikely to make it. I say this just based on your spelling and grammar. Truth is the Bar is immensely difficult to get into and I'm not going to sugarcoat it for you. If you get a first, then you probably can - but bear in mind a first is becoming more and more a prerequisite nowadays. The regions can be less competitive.
    I appreciate the response but this is just a forum and I didn't ask you to criticise my grammer and spelling.
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    (Original post by MQ003C)
    I did a Law Degree but I'm going down the other route towards the LPC so I can become a solicitor. Its tough either route especially in this economic climate. For solicitors its all about getting a training contract by any means. Barristers and entering the Bar is a different kettle of fish altogether. You will have to have an outstanding academic record to not only stand out from the crowd but to even have your application looked at.

    However in relation to your degree choice it is possible to go through with a degree in other subjects and still become a barrister just you will not only need the degree and grades to get in you need to have a wealth of other skills to prove you're a brilliant candidate, work experience is key here and volunteering and such its all about how you come across on paper that will get you considered.

    So don't fret choose the path YOU want to take and do something thats actually going to interest you. I believe that passion is an important factor when choosing a career so go for it!
    Thank you. I would like to think that I could make it one day as I've gone from failing nearly all my GCSE's to getting A's at Alevel. Plus I have plenty of extra currcicular achievements and would like to do as many as possible at university. I also intended on coming back to London to do Law at City Law Schoolm due to its relationship with the Inns of Court here in London.
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    (Original post by Rancorous)
    The truth is you're unlikely to make it. I say this just based on your spelling and grammar. Truth is the Bar is immensely difficult to get into and I'm not going to sugarcoat it for you. If you get a first, then you probably can - but bear in mind a first is becoming more and more a prerequisite nowadays. The regions can be less competitive.
    To add to my previous comment: How can you make such a determined prejudgement of my future? How dare you. Furthermore I didn't ask for sugarcoating, nor a critical response to my spelling and grammer of course.

    I am very well aware of the level of English writing and speaking skills I have to have before I go anywhere near the profession.
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    (Original post by iamjeeoh)
    To add to my previous comment: How can you make such a determined prejudgement of my future? How dare you. Furthermore I didn't ask for sugarcoating, nor a critical response to my spelling and grammer of course.

    I am very well aware of the level of English writing and speaking skills I have to have before I go anywhere near the profession.
    He's touched a nerve there I think. I wouldn't worry too much about what people say to you on internet fora.
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    As an addendum OP, i suspect a law degree would look far better than a combined Sociology/Criminology; it's seen as more 'academic'. If 'various teachers and professionals' have told you that the LLB is not the best route for entering the profession then they are frankly wrong. An LLB from a decent uni not only looks great to areas OUTSIDE of law, it also means that you won't have to pay out for the GDL post - degree; which can be 20k.
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    (Original post by iamjeeoh)
    I appreciate the response but this is just a forum and I didn't ask you to criticise my grammer and spelling.

    (Original post by iamjeeoh)
    To add to my previous comment: How can you make such a determined prejudgement of my future? How dare you. Furthermore I didn't ask for sugarcoating, nor a critical response to my spelling and grammer of course.

    I am very well aware of the level of English writing and speaking skills I have to have before I go anywhere near the profession.
    Sorry to be a pedant and all that but...
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    (Original post by iamjeeoh)
    I appreciate the response but this is just a forum and I didn't ask you to criticise my grammer and spelling.
    Well 5 people have jumped on the bandwagon and thumbed down my answer; I don't know if you were one of them. This is a sad example of wanting to live in Disneyland.

    The truth is if you can't even spell properly or write sentences properly at 18, why should anyone believe that you will be able to spell perfectly and write immaculately at 21/22? As a barrister, you have to have a way with words to be able to represent people who can't represent themselves. Let me tell you, I'd never want someone with your spelling and grammar ever representing me. I know that sounds aggressive or confrontational - I'm not trying to hurt your feelings. It's just the truth, that's constructive and if you can't face it, you should live in Disneyland. The truth is you have to be the cream of the crop to be a barrister. So far you would have probably 3 As in rigorous A-levels - which given your choice of course, and your writing, I'm not sure you have. You can do it with a 2:1, but the Bar is pretentious and that would usually have to be a good 2:1 at least, from an 'old' university. Teachers who give you false hope are who you should be angry at.

    (Original post by iamjeeoh)
    I have not yet made any formal decisions about becoming a Barrister or applying for The Bar because I am just about to start university.

    I have applied for a BA in Sociology and Criminology (HONS). I chose this course because of my profound interest in these areas of study, however I did decide on this coure partly due to my belief that I would gain a better skill set when wanting to go down the route of applying for The Bar. A large part of this train of though is due to various teachers and other professionals telling me that a Law degree isn't the best route for entering the legal profession.

    Like I said, I am yet to make a formal decisions about this venture, but I fear that my beliefs maybe wrong, and that there is a possibility that I have made a mistake in applying for Sociology and Criminology instead of doing a Law degree.

    Any advice on my concerns would be appreciated.
    Just in this post:
    7 spelling mistakes/mistaken capitals bolded.
    Pretty much every sentence has some kind of grammatical error or clumsy expression, e.gs of the latter, 'profound interest', 'venture'.

    In a law degree, usually criteria for grading exams includes clarity of expression, as well as spelling/grammar. At my university, I think it would have been difficult to get a low 2:1 and above given your current expression and spelling/grammar, even if other criteria like accuracy merited a high 2:1/borderline first. In fact, given that marking is often quite impressionistic, if a marker does not understand what you are trying to say, then you are screwed. Honestly, I had to reread some of your sentences more than once because I did not understand what you were trying to say. I don't think that's my comprehension: I think that's the way you're expressing yourself.

    I write this as a person of pretty average writing skills myself, but your posts reflect a GCSE candidate rather than what I'd expect of an 18 year old. Again, I'm not trying to be nasty; only honest.
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    I don't think Criminology is considered to be a respected degree. Sociology? Meh.

    Try Law/History. I know it's too late.
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    (Original post by iamjeeoh)
    Thank you. I would like to think that I could make it one day as I've gone from failing nearly all my GCSE's to getting A's at Alevel. Plus I have plenty of extra currcicular achievements and would like to do as many as possible at university. I also intended on coming back to London to do Law at City Law Schoolm due to its relationship with the Inns of Court here in London.
    What sort of Chambers do you want to go to? If you have ambitions at the top commercial Chambers you're going to need an absolutely eye popping CV I'm afraid and I think the commercial Bar in general is very competitive. However, the Family Bar and Criminal, whilst still very tough, are less ridiculous (I've met a criminal barrister who only just got a 2:1, admittedly from a good university).

    If you want to work in the regions, which are a bit less competitive, it might be a good idea to go to one of the unis in a big city where there are plenty of chambers (notably Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds maybe Bristol, and probably the RG unis in those cities not the post 1992) as it proves commitment, and roots in, to those cities in a way that attending say Exeter can't.

    This website is really good with particularly good bits for someone at your stage on what constitutes a 'good' uni and Oxbridge, with some research on where it's very useful to attend those two particular universities and where it's less so.

    Good luck
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    (Original post by Rancorous)
    The truth is you're unlikely to make it. I say this just based on your spelling and grammar. Truth is the Bar is immensely difficult to get into and I'm not going to sugarcoat it for you. If you get a first, then you probably can - but bear in mind a first is becoming more and more a prerequisite nowadays. The regions can be less competitive.
    I'm only 16 and I also want to become a lawyer or w/e then work my way up to a barrister. So just becoz i typ3 lyke dis dos it mean i won't get 2 bec0me a lawy3rrr? Even though you have to have spot on grammar it can be improved man so just do w/e you want to and if you have to improve your spelling then improve it, I'm sure not every lawyer or 'solicitor' is the best at spelling.
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    (Original post by Rancorous)
    The truth is you're unlikely to make it. I say this just based on your spelling and grammar. Truth is the Bar is immensely difficult to get into and I'm not going to sugarcoat it for you. If you get a first, then you probably can - but bear in mind a first is becoming more and more a prerequisite nowadays. The regions can be less competitive.
    *sigh* :facepalm:
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    (Original post by Rancorous)
    Well 5 people have jumped on the bandwagon and thumbed down my answer; I don't know if you were one of them. This is a sad example of wanting to live in Disneyland.

    The truth is if you can't even spell properly or write sentences properly at 18, why should anyone believe that you will be able to spell perfectly and write immaculately at 21/22? As a barrister, you have to have a way with words to be able to represent people who can't represent themselves. Let me tell you, I'd never want someone with your spelling and grammar ever representing me. I know that sounds aggressive or confrontational - I'm not trying to hurt your feelings. It's just the truth, that's constructive and if you can't face it, you should live in Disneyland. The truth is you have to be the cream of the crop to be a barrister. So far you would have probably 3 As in rigorous A-levels - which given your choice of course, and your writing, I'm not sure you have. You can do it with a 2:1, but the Bar is pretentious and that would usually have to be a good 2:1 at least, from an 'old' university. Teachers who give you false hope are who you should be angry at.



    Just in this post:
    7 spelling mistakes/mistaken capitals bolded.
    Pretty much every sentence has some kind of grammatical error or clumsy expression, e.gs of the latter, 'profound interest', 'venture'.

    In a law degree, usually criteria for grading exams includes clarity of expression, as well as spelling/grammar. At my university, I think it would have been difficult to get a low 2:1 and above given your current expression and spelling/grammar, even if other criteria like accuracy merited a high 2:1/borderline first. In fact, given that marking is often quite impressionistic, if a marker does not understand what you are trying to say, then you are screwed. Honestly, I had to reread some of your sentences more than once because I did not understand what you were trying to say. I don't think that's my comprehension: I think that's the way you're expressing yourself.

    I write this as a person of pretty average writing skills myself, but your posts reflect a GCSE candidate rather than what I'd expect of an 18 year old. Again, I'm not trying to be nasty; only honest.
    Uhh... 'maybe' is spelt like that...
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    (Original post by redpanda41)
    Uhh... 'maybe' is spelt like that...
    No, it's not. There's a distinction between 'maybe' and 'may be'.

    It may be sunny today.
    Maybe I will go outside to play.

    I really hope you're not studying A-levels too!

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