Best universities for law (specifically Bristol vs KCL)

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ginevrafanshawe
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Hey, I'm submitting my UCAS form in a couple of months and although I thought I had chosen which unis I wanted to apply for, I'm having a few doubts.
My list is currently:
1. Oxford
2. LSE
3. Durham
4. UCL
5. King's

But I have two things I'm not sure about:
1. Bristol vs Kings
2. LSE vs Durham (if I get into both, which should I choose as my firm?)

My main question is Bristol vs Kings as that's obviously something I have to choose a lot sooner than my other question

The current pros and cons I've come up with are:

King's
Pros: London (better shops and nightclubs; close to law firms, Royal Courts of Justice, etc)
Cons: worse reputation/employability?

Bristol
Pros: better reputation/employability?
Cons: not London

Are these pros and cons accurate, and does anyone have any insights into Bristol as a city/uni? I've never been there and now I won't get the chance to go to an open day before I have to submit my application Also, if anyone knows any differences in the way the course is taught/structured, that sort of thing would be really useful too!

Thanks
Last edited by ginevrafanshawe; 2 months ago
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PetitePanda
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Both are solid choices with reputation-wise and employability and you wont be hindered job wise. If London is a pro, then you would like Kings. lawcalling is a MC trainee from Bristol uni so maybe they have some advice? The course structure is on website btw and how its taught too. Im a bit worried that you have no non-LNAT unis or insurance unis tbh in your selection
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RV3112
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(Original post by ginevrafanshawe)
Hey, I'm submitting my UCAS form in a couple of months and although I thought I had chosen which unis I wanted to apply for, I'm having a few doubts.
My list is currently:
1. Oxford
2. LSE
3. Durham
4. UCL
5. King's

But I have two things I'm not sure about:
1. Bristol vs Kings
2. LSE vs Durham (if I get into both, which should I choose as my firm?)

My main question is Bristol vs Kings as that's obviously something I have to choose a lot sooner than my other question

The current pros and cons I've come up with are:

King's
Pros: London (better shops and nightclubs; close to law firms, Royal Courts of Justice, etc)
Cons: worse reputation/employability?

Bristol
Pros: better reputation/employability?
Cons: not London

Are these pros and cons accurate, and does anyone have any insights into Bristol as a city/uni? I've never been there and now I won't get the chance to go to an open day before I have to submit my application Also, if anyone knows any differences in the way the course is taught/structured, that sort of thing would be really useful too!

Thanks
Your pros and cons related to reputation and employability are not accurate. Neither Bristol or KCL has an advantage over the other.

It is the same story for LSE v Durham. Reputation and employability are equal. There will probably be some form of 'virtual' open days available to help you make your choice.
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PetitePanda
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(Original post by RV3112)
Your pros and cons related to reputation and employability are not accurate. Neither Bristol or KCL has an advantage over the other.

It is the same story for LSE v Durham. Reputation and employability are equal. There will probably be some form of 'virtual' open days available to help you make your choice.
PRSOM
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ginevrafanshawe
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(Original post by PetitePanda)
Both are solid choices with reputation-wise and employability and you wont be hindered job wise. If London is a pro, then you would like Kings. lawcalling is a MC trainee from Bristol uni so maybe they have some advice? The course structure is on website btw and how its taught too. Im a bit worried that you have no non-LNAT unis or insurance unis tbh in your selection
Great, thanks I think I've been focusing too much on league tables which are never 100% accurate. In terms of how it was taught, I was thinking more about the student experience of it rather than the format, eg how well it's taught and how much support is offered rather than whether they have lectures etc, I should have worded it better. In terms of non-LNAT unis and insurances, my school told me I didn't need one but I think you're right and it would be a good idea. I've been looking at Exeter so might switch out one of my options for there

(Original post by RV3112)
Your pros and cons related to reputation and employability are not accurate. Neither Bristol or KCL has an advantage over the other.

It is the same story for LSE v Durham. Reputation and employability are equal. There will probably be some form of 'virtual' open days available to help you make your choice.
Thanks for replying I suppose it depends more on the person than the university, I've been too reliant on league tables lol! I did do some virtual open days but compared to the few real-life ones I've been to they didn't give me a good feel/vibe of the uni, I might drive up there to check it out even though there won't be an open day
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lawcalling
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(Original post by PetitePanda)
Both are solid choices with reputation-wise and employability and you wont be hindered job wise. If London is a pro, then you would like Kings. lawcalling is a MC trainee from Bristol uni so maybe they have some advice? The course structure is on website btw and how its taught too. Im a bit worried that you have no non-LNAT unis or insurance unis tbh in your selection
(Original post by RV3112)
Your pros and cons related to reputation and employability are not accurate. Neither Bristol or KCL has an advantage over the other.

It is the same story for LSE v Durham. Reputation and employability are equal. There will probably be some form of 'virtual' open days available to help you make your choice.
Thanks for the @ PetitePanda!

I completely agree with the above, Kings and Bristol are pretty much on par with each other in terms of reputation. As there’s basically nothing in it, just go for the uni you prefer. As you have mentioned, London based unis are closer to law firms and also have more nightclubs and shops etc. In terms of law firms, they will always visit most RG unis (definitely all the ones you’ve mentioned) and if you’re happy to travel to London now and again for events you’ll be at no real disadvantage. Most law socs will also host coach trips to various law firms alongside a careers dinners, presentations and informal networking events on campus. London will have more nightclubs but they wont necessarily be better - and a lot more expensive! The same goes for rent, transport etc. I wouldn’t have been able to afford rent in London so never ended up applying. Looking back now, I think that was a good choice - Bristol provided opportunities as good as those provided by London unis in my eyes. I know of several people who interviewed at Magic Circle firms in my year, with at least one or two students in my year receiving Training Contracts for each.

If you’re going to Apply to Durham, consider that it will be a lot quieter than London and it’s also harder for law firms to access you and vice versa. Weigh this up against the slight edge Durham has in terms of rep.

I absolutely adored Bristol, take a look at Wills Memorial Building and its library online (that’s the law building). Clubs and accom are great and the unis runs regular buses right outside the clubs until 4am, you also have the option of living in Clifton village (gorgeous) or the City, so it works for everyone. I also didn’t visit the university before applying and went to the post-offer Open Day in April time - which may be a viable option for you.
Last edited by lawcalling; 2 months ago
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EU Yakov
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ah, yes, another one of those hypothetical threads... what makes you so sure you'll get into king's or bristol? or lse and durham?
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Arisapo
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Like others have said, the reputation difference is negligible. No employer will care if you went to Bristol over Kings or vice versa; they’re both very good Law schools and a degree from either looks excellent.

You’re on the right lines thinking about whether being in London or outside suits you; I personally wouldn’t want to be in London for an undergrad, but it might suit you perfectly. Wouldn’t even say London has a better nightlife than Bristol — there’s obviously a lot more choice, but it’s much more expensive and realistically you find the 1 or 2 clubs you like and stick to them so don’t need loads.

I’d also take one of your choices out and have a “safe” one in there. Oxford is obviously very hard to get into, and the others you’ve picked are amongst the hardest to get into in the country; LSE, UCL and Kings have a 20%, 19% and 23% offer rate respectively. Durham and Bristol are easier to get into, but still difficult.

It’s good to have a “safe” option that you can bank on getting an offer from regardless and is still a very good uni. In the instance your LNAT goes horribly, you could be left with nothing. You mentioned Exeter — that’s a very good choice. Lovely uni and campus, high offer rate, good links to firms, great course, and honestly no worse than Bristol or Durham.

If you go for Oxford, LSE, UCL, Bristol and Exeter say, you’ve got a better range and one safe non-LNAT choice. Hope that helps.
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ginevrafanshawe
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(Original post by EU Yakov)
ah, yes, another one of those hypothetical threads... what makes you so sure you'll get into king's or bristol? or lse and durham?
Well I'm not sure but that's why I'm applying to 5 unis lol, just want to make the most of my options so that I'm happy wherever I end up

(Original post by Arisapo)
Like others have said, the reputation difference is negligible. No employer will care if you went to Bristol over Kings or vice versa; they’re both very good Law schools and a degree from either looks excellent.

You’re on the right lines thinking about whether being in London or outside suits you; I personally wouldn’t want to be in London for an undergrad, but it might suit you perfectly. Wouldn’t even say London has a better nightlife than Bristol — there’s obviously a lot more choice, but it’s much more expensive and realistically you find the 1 or 2 clubs you like and stick to them so don’t need loads.

I’d also take one of your choices out and have a “safe” one in there. Oxford is obviously very hard to get into, and the others you’ve picked are amongst the hardest to get into in the country; LSE, UCL and Kings have a 20%, 19% and 23% offer rate respectively. Durham and Bristol are easier to get into, but still difficult.

It’s good to have a “safe” option that you can bank on getting an offer from regardless and is still a very good uni. In the instance your LNAT goes horribly, you could be left with nothing. You mentioned Exeter — that’s a very good choice. Lovely uni and campus, high offer rate, good links to firms, great course, and honestly no worse than Bristol or Durham.

If you go for Oxford, LSE, UCL, Bristol and Exeter say, you’ve got a better range and one safe non-LNAT choice. Hope that helps.
Hey, thanks for replying! Thank you for the info on London nightlife, I think you're right about sticking to a couple so I guess that reduces the differences between Bristol and London. You're also right about having a safe option, I think based on the replies in this thread I'm definitely going to switch out one of my options for Exeter!
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lawcalling
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(Original post by Arisapo)
Like others have said, the reputation difference is negligible. No employer will care if you went to Bristol over Kings or vice versa; they’re both very good Law schools and a degree from either looks excellent.

You’re on the right lines thinking about whether being in London or outside suits you; I personally wouldn’t want to be in London for an undergrad, but it might suit you perfectly. Wouldn’t even say London has a better nightlife than Bristol — there’s obviously a lot more choice, but it’s much more expensive and realistically you find the 1 or 2 clubs you like and stick to them so don’t need loads.

I’d also take one of your choices out and have a “safe” one in there. Oxford is obviously very hard to get into, and the others you’ve picked are amongst the hardest to get into in the country; LSE, UCL and Kings have a 20%, 19% and 23% offer rate respectively. Durham and Bristol are easier to get into, but still difficult.

It’s good to have a “safe” option that you can bank on getting an offer from regardless and is still a very good uni. In the instance your LNAT goes horribly, you could be left with nothing. You mentioned Exeter — that’s a very good choice. Lovely uni and campus, high offer rate, good links to firms, great course, and honestly no worse than Bristol or Durham.

If you go for Oxford, LSE, UCL, Bristol and Exeter say, you’ve got a better range and one safe non-LNAT choice. Hope that helps.
Completely agree!
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Arisapo
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(Original post by ginevrafanshawe)
Well I'm not sure but that's why I'm applying to 5 unis lol, just want to make the most of my options so that I'm happy wherever I end up


Hey, thanks for replying! Thank you for the info on London nightlife, I think you're right about sticking to a couple so I guess that reduces the differences between Bristol and London. You're also right about having a safe option, I think based on the replies in this thread I'm definitely going to switch out one of my options for Exeter!
No problem. If night life is a big thing for you, honestly it’s more about the people you’re with than a great array of clubs/bars. Get a good group and you’ll have fun anywhere. London has lots of perks, but I wouldn’t want to live there for undergrad, but it’s all a matter of personal preference.

You should definitely take one out for a safer, non-LNAT choice. Exeter is probably the one I would opt for, but there’s Manchester, Birmingham or Newcastle if you prefer a big city, or somewhere like York or Warwick if somewhere smaller is more your thing.

If you want to live in London, I’d probably have 2 max. Oxford is obviously your definite, I’d make Exeter a definite as a safe one, and then if you want London, do LSE and UCL say, and then choose one of Bristol or Durham.
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