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Biochem @ Imperial; good enough for Magic Circle Firms? watch

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    (Original post by Rofl)
    Yes, but it's hard for some to muster up the confidence to study law, let alone pursue a career in it; given the relatively little exposure you get at secondary school. You go on to do a subject at university because you like that subject, not necessarily because you want to be bound by the possibilities or opportunities that accompany it.
    This is really valid. If law as a degree was the only route into law as a profession then people may enrol for the wrong reasons. As Rofl has said; people ought to choose their degree because they want to study that particular subject. Studying law in a textbook is very different to practising law as a qualified lawyer.

    It is a good assumption to make that people who have come from a non-law route have gained a far broader range of competencies than law students, and these are the skills that are highly valued by law firms.
    I'm not sure that this is a good assumption to make though. You're right in that there are plenty of other subjects which will provide you with the relevant footing to pursue a legal career but law is a very valued degree and largely because of the "competencies" which one will develop. I don't feel as though my skills are any narrower when compared to my friends who study Maths or History, for example.
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    I am sorry but I have to disagree. You should study something that is relevant to your chosen career. If you didnt like it then you wouldnt want a career in it would you? Your second comment is wrong. Yes, non law grads may have valuable skills for the work place but the UK's top lawyers are law graduates.
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    (Original post by charli159)
    but the UK's top lawyers are law graduates.
    Where on earth did you get that statistic from?
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    (Original post by Mr_Deeds)
    This is really valid. If law as a degree was the only route into law as a profession then people may enrol for the wrong reasons. As Rofl has said; people ought to choose their degree because they want to study that particular subject. Studying law in a textbook is very different to practising law as a qualified lawyer.



    I'm not sure that this is a good assumption to make though. You're right in that there are plenty of other subjects which will provide you with the relevant footing to pursue a legal career but law is a very valued degree and largely because of the "competencies" which one will develop. I don't feel as though my skills are any narrower when compared to my friends who study Maths or History, for example.
    My bad. I didn't mean that lawyers aren't endowed with the competencies that are expected of them. I meant that some subjects develop certain attributes that are regarded in high-esteem by many law firms. For example, it's well-known scientists go into IP because it's something that matches their strength.
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    (Original post by Rofl)
    My bad. I didn't mean that lawyers aren't endowed with the competencies that are expected of them. I meant that some subjects develop certain attributes that are regarded in high-esteem by many law firms. For example, it's well-known scientists go into IP because it's something that matches their strength.
    I think there's definitely a strong connection between lawyers who practise IP and lawyers who've studied a subject like Chemistry for example. But then law, at least in my experience, is just as much a "science" (in a non-conventional sense of the word) as it is an art. At the risk of going off-topic: studying a non-law subject like History/English is just as valid/legitimate and useful as studying Biochemistry. And I think we're probably both getting at the same point.
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    (Original post by charli159)
    I am sorry but I have to disagree. You should study something that is relevant to your chosen career. If you didnt like it then you wouldnt want a career in it would you? Your second comment is wrong. Yes, non law grads may have valuable skills for the work place but the UK's top lawyers are law graduates.
    What if you don't know what career you want to go into when you're choosing your degree? Or what if you don't want to have to study all aspects of law in a broad setting, you just want to practice a select few? There are a lot of reasons why you wouldn't choose to study law as a university subject... As a linguist, I have fluency in two languages to take with me as well as all the usual arts subject transferable skills. I don't see how that's a bad thing...
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    [QUOTE] Yes, non law grads may have valuable skills for the work place but the UK's top lawyers are law graduates.[/QUOTE

    I'd be interested to see the hard evidence for your assertion that assertion. If it were true, why would the UK's top law firms recruit 40-50% of their trainees from non-law graduates?
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    (Original post by charli159)
    I am sorry but I have to disagree. You should study something that is relevant to your chosen career. If you didnt like it then you wouldnt want a career in it would you? Your second comment is wrong. Yes, non law grads may have valuable skills for the work place but the UK's top lawyers are law graduates.
    Do you really think being a solicitor really involves that much in depth understanding of legal theory?
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    (Original post by charli159)
    threads like this make me laugh. You want a career in law then surely it is common sense to study law. The GDL should never have been invented imo. I cannot stress how fierce the competition is for training contracts alone, let alone MC firms. Even the best of the best find it really hard. Prob best to go down Science route or languages route
    What a ridiculous comment. Even at the very best MC firms approx 50% of the trainee intake is non-law -- do you really think they would go through the added expense of paying for non-law students to do the GDL (plus giving them maintenance awards) if they didn't think they brought different transferable skills to the table?
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    Charli is actually entirely correct on the top lawyers point. Most of the top lawyers are law grads. Of course, this is because the GDL used to be less common than it is now.

    I wouldn't come down as strongly as Charli, but if you have a choice doing law is probably an advantage. You don't have to spend a year doing the GDL, and will have a much better understanding, at least in the early years. Something I noticed on the LPC was that law grads had a much better understanding than GDLers, and were much less prone to making mistakes. The number of subjects on the GDL is quite limiting, even if you are sure you want to practice in a particular area, particularly with an area like corporate/commercial law, you still need to be aware of all sorts of bits and bobs that won't be covered on the GDL but will be covered on a degree if you pick appropriate options. I'm sure its meaningless once you have been in practice a wee while though, and law firms certainly don't have a preference either way (or if they do, they don't tell anybody). BioChem at Imperial is fine.
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    (Original post by jacketpotato)
    Charli is actually entirely correct on the top lawyers point. Most of the top lawyers are law grads. Of course, this is because the GDL used to be less common than it is now.

    I wouldn't come down as strongly as Charli, but if you have a choice doing law is probably an advantage. You don't have to spend a year doing the GDL, and will have a much better understanding, at least in the early years. Something I noticed on the LPC was that law grads had a much better understanding than GDLers, and were much less prone to making mistakes. The number of subjects on the GDL is quite limiting, even if you are sure you want to practice in a particular area, particularly with an area like corporate/commercial law, you still need to be aware of all sorts of bits and bobs that won't be covered on the GDL but will be covered on a degree if you pick appropriate options. I'm sure its meaningless once you have been in practice a wee while though, and law firms certainly don't have a preference either way (or if they do, they don't tell anybody). BioChem at Imperial is fine.
    Yes, but when you actually become a fully-fledged solicitor via a law or a non-law route, I don't think you can draw a distinct line between the two. Her comment was made in gest to lawyers, not students who are enrolled on the LPC. With years of experience in the bag, who is to say that those who undertook a three-year law course are in the better position to become one of the top commercial lawyers for instance? Without some statistics, it remains doubtful whether this is the case.
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    Charli is actually entirely correct on the top lawyers point. Most of the top lawyers are law grads. Of course, this is because the GDL used to be less common than it is now.
    Fair enough. But it's a bit like arguing that most top lawyers went to independent schools back in the day, so to be a top lawyer you should go to an independent school. It confuses correlation and cause.

    Call me sad but I tracked down the statistics on the Law Society website.

    In 2007/08, there were 7861 entered on the roll. 51% of those had law degrees, 20% had non-law degrees and 29% were transfers (mainly from overseas).

    This compares to 17702 accepted onto law degrees and 13602 law grads in 2007.

    So, while we are not comparing the same cohort, that would roughly mean that less than 1 in 4 of those starting a law degree go on to qualify as a solicitor (by choice or by default). Not very good odds.

    For the Bar, of pupillages in 2008, 58% went to law graduates and 42% to non-law.

    I'm surprised how low the non-law solicitors' proportion is. I guess the many firms outside the City who don't sponsor the GDL or even LPC have something to do with that. The MC firms have a very different profile.

    In 2008 9662 enrolled on the LPC while 6303 traineeships were registered. Somewhat better odds but it would be worry if you were self-funding.

    To return to the OP's question, I have met many more arts/humanities grads applying to MC firms than scientists. That's only my personal experience , mind. Which is not to say that literate scientists don't have an equally good chance.
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    (Original post by Rofl)
    Yes, but when you actually become a fully-fledged solicitor via a law or a non-law route, I don't think you can draw a distinct line between the two. Her comment was made in gest to lawyers, not students who are enrolled on the LPC. With years of experience in the bag, who is to say that those who undertook a three-year law course are in the better position to become one of the top commercial lawyers for instance? Without some statistics, it remains doubtful whether this is the case.
    Yes I agree, my post wasn't strictly on-topic. However, I don't think that's what Charli said - she stated that the majority of top lawyers are law grads, not explicitly that it is better to be a law grad if you want to be a top lawyer. She is technically correct, though I think the conclusion she wanted people to draw from that is wrong now that the GDL is very very common-place.

    (Original post by peachmelba)
    I'm surprised how low the non-law solicitors' proportion is. I guess the many firms outside the City who don't sponsor the GDL or even LPC have something to do with that. The MC firms have a very different profile.
    Interesting statistics, thanks for that.
    I think the proportion of GDLers is likely to be higher for MC firms. I've finished an LPC for people going to a consortium of firms (2 MC firms and 3 other top commercial ones), and it seemed to me that the slight majority of people were GDLers. If I had to guess, I'd say 55:45 or 60:40 in favour of GDLers.
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    (Original post by jacketpotato)
    Something I noticed on the LPC was that law grads had a much better understanding than GDLers, and were much less prone to making mistakes. The number of subjects on the GDL is quite limiting, even if you are sure you want to practice in a particular area, particularly with an area like corporate/commercial law, you still need to be aware of all sorts of bits and bobs that won't be covered on the GDL but will be covered on a degree if you pick appropriate options.
    I haven't really found there to be any notable differences between law grads and GDLers. Law grads have the advantage of having studied a much wider range of law in more depth but I've found that I often can't remember some contract/land/etc. cases or principles because I haven't studied them in three years, whereas GDLers have only just done them.
 
 
 
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