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I’m confused where to go

Basically I’m in second year law student. And I’m confused on what I wanna be. I definitely wanna do law. That’s what I like but idk what about it. I don’t even know which field tbh. Basically idk if I want to become a solicitor or a barrister. I feel like my skills are 50/50.

When I think of barrister I think that’s my side, like I think I can provide arguments with different perspectives and stuff, able to clear my point etc but I think the idea that I’ve to speak and stuff, basically speaking skills might not be that level ig or maybe I’m low on confidence because English is not my first language or my accent idk.


And with solicitor- I think that’s my strength too, you know working on my own kind of, in a office or whatever, but my weakness might be legal drafting or a lot of writing etc

Now see what I mean 😭 I understand that it’s okay to have areas to improve on. Because that’s how you pick a path or career and work towards it by improving and learning. But I’m not sure which I’m path I want to take. Now ofc other things come into consideration, like employability, long term plans, demand etc

So if anyone could help me? Btw my uni is asking me to start picking modules for final year of law. So any tips on that? Even though I like criminal law, I definitely don’t wanna go that side because of lack of salary compared to other fields. Especially I’m in the uk. So what modules are the best to pick, even generally not just the ones I’m supposed to like but the ones that will get me TC, or jobs and stuff, because how demanded they are , or highly rated. Thanks
Original post by ToGodly
Basically I’m in second year law student. And I’m confused on what I wanna be. I definitely wanna do law. That’s what I like but idk what about it. I don’t even know which field tbh. Basically idk if I want to become a solicitor or a barrister. I feel like my skills are 50/50.
When I think of barrister I think that’s my side, like I think I can provide arguments with different perspectives and stuff, able to clear my point etc but I think the idea that I’ve to speak and stuff, basically speaking skills might not be that level ig or maybe I’m low on confidence because English is not my first language or my accent idk.
And with solicitor- I think that’s my strength too, you know working on my own kind of, in a office or whatever, but my weakness might be legal drafting or a lot of writing etc
Now see what I mean 😭 I understand that it’s okay to have areas to improve on. Because that’s how you pick a path or career and work towards it by improving and learning. But I’m not sure which I’m path I want to take. Now ofc other things come into consideration, like employability, long term plans, demand etc
So if anyone could help me? Btw my uni is asking me to start picking modules for final year of law. So any tips on that? Even though I like criminal law, I definitely don’t wanna go that side because of lack of salary compared to other fields. Especially I’m in the uk. So what modules are the best to pick, even generally not just the ones I’m supposed to like but the ones that will get me TC, or jobs and stuff, because how demanded they are , or highly rated. Thanks

If you are able to, gaining work experience can be really helpful to get an idea of what you want to do. Lots of firms offer mini pupillages, vacation schemes, or even just online work experience on platforms like Forage (I think anyone can do these online ones if they're not live/video call ones, you don't need to apply). Perhaps trying these might help you to get an idea?
On the modules side of things, the actual modules you pick will make little to no difference to your employability. You certainly don't need to be picking modules because you do or do not want to practise in those areas. I would go with the modules that you are most interested in and the modules where you think you stand the best chance of getting the best grades, because your overall degree classification is important. You want a First if you can get it regardless of which profession you gravitate towards, and a minimum of a 2:1.

As for choosing between being a solicitor and a barrister, it's fine to be attracted to different aspects of both, but they are very different professions. The majority of solicitors do not want to be barristers, and vice versa. I think the answer is what has already been suggested; you want to gain as much experience as you can of each of them, and preferably in a range of areas too. That will build up your experience and knowledge over time and give you more an idea of which profession you're best suited to.
Original post by ToGodly
Basically I’m in second year law student. And I’m confused on what I wanna be. I definitely wanna do law. That’s what I like but idk what about it. I don’t even know which field tbh. Basically idk if I want to become a solicitor or a barrister. I feel like my skills are 50/50.
When I think of barrister I think that’s my side, like I think I can provide arguments with different perspectives and stuff, able to clear my point etc but I think the idea that I’ve to speak and stuff, basically speaking skills might not be that level ig or maybe I’m low on confidence because English is not my first language or my accent idk.
And with solicitor- I think that’s my strength too, you know working on my own kind of, in a office or whatever, but my weakness might be legal drafting or a lot of writing etc
Now see what I mean 😭 I understand that it’s okay to have areas to improve on. Because that’s how you pick a path or career and work towards it by improving and learning. But I’m not sure which I’m path I want to take. Now ofc other things come into consideration, like employability, long term plans, demand etc
So if anyone could help me? Btw my uni is asking me to start picking modules for final year of law. So any tips on that? Even though I like criminal law, I definitely don’t wanna go that side because of lack of salary compared to other fields. Especially I’m in the uk. So what modules are the best to pick, even generally not just the ones I’m supposed to like but the ones that will get me TC, or jobs and stuff, because how demanded they are , or highly rated. Thanks

Hi there

I understand that deciding on a career path can be difficult. It is quite normal not to know for sure what area you want to go into in the future, but here are some things that may be useful to consider:

Have you had a chance to gain any legal work experience? After second year of law school, I was able to gain some interning experience during the summer holiday. If this is possible, I would really recommend having a look at any local firms that offer opportunities. Prior to my internship, I was also confused as to which area of law to enter into, and I also wanted to confirm my interests in being a solicitor- which the internship allowed me. 🙂 Hands on work experience, if not, any advice and insights from lawyers will be really useful.

Virtual/ Online webinars- I know that the Vantage and legal cheek offer a range of online talks by trainees and lawyers offering insights into their daily work and career progression. This is something that you could check out! If you have any legal networking opportunities, these will be really useful too.

Picking modules: modules usually will not massively affect your future career prospects. Whilst it can demonstrate your interest in particular areas of law, picking niche modules will not necessarily make your application weaker. (though just as an insight, there are many students that are interested in commercial law, so they will take modules such as company law etc. That is not to say you have to take it, there are students who are interested more in the private practice of law such as succession law, immigration laws etc.) So just pick whatever interests you the most, it is also important to consider how the modules are assessed to ensure you achieve a good grade). 😀


As a final year law student, I understand that it can feel quite daunting not knowing what you want to do in the future. Doing research into different areas of law, networking with peers and professionals and focusing on your studies will put you in a good position. Sometimes, students may not know what areas they want to practice in until they are actually in the legal environment, and that is fine too. 🙂 I think many of the skills which are relevant to a solicitor's job will also be relevant for barrister's. So as long as you are continuously developing your transferrable skills, you will be able to tailor them to your application.

Hope this helps.
Chloe
University of Kent Student Rep
Original post by ToGodly
Basically I’m in second year law student. And I’m confused on what I wanna be. I definitely wanna do law. That’s what I like but idk what about it. I don’t even know which field tbh. Basically idk if I want to become a solicitor or a barrister. I feel like my skills are 50/50.
When I think of barrister I think that’s my side, like I think I can provide arguments with different perspectives and stuff, able to clear my point etc but I think the idea that I’ve to speak and stuff, basically speaking skills might not be that level ig or maybe I’m low on confidence because English is not my first language or my accent idk.
And with solicitor- I think that’s my strength too, you know working on my own kind of, in a office or whatever, but my weakness might be legal drafting or a lot of writing etc
Now see what I mean 😭 I understand that it’s okay to have areas to improve on. Because that’s how you pick a path or career and work towards it by improving and learning. But I’m not sure which I’m path I want to take. Now ofc other things come into consideration, like employability, long term plans, demand etc
So if anyone could help me? Btw my uni is asking me to start picking modules for final year of law. So any tips on that? Even though I like criminal law, I definitely don’t wanna go that side because of lack of salary compared to other fields. Especially I’m in the uk. So what modules are the best to pick, even generally not just the ones I’m supposed to like but the ones that will get me TC, or jobs and stuff, because how demanded they are , or highly rated. Thanks

Hi

At risk of echoing what has already been said, there is definitely no need to worry about which modules you pick in terms of how this looks from an employment perspective. You want to do well in your modules so choosing ones that you like will probably be the best plan, however, most firms and chambers don't ask for a list of your modules when applying any more. Therefore, whatever you end up choosing will likely have little impact past your own interest and enjoyment whilst studying them!

In terms of deciding on which profession suits you better, I think the only way to be sure is to get some experience. I would recommend looking at signing up to mooting competitions to test out whether you do really enjoy advocacy. I would also see if you can get onto any vacation schemes or general work experience with solicitor firms in different areas. If you are able to, then I would also try and do some mini pupillages with chambers in different areas of law. This may be a little harder as sometimes there are restrictions on when you can apply (as in which year of university you are in etc.) but always worth looking into!

I hope this helps 🙂
There are vastly more places for trainee solicitors than there are for barristers so you will immediately improve your odds if you pick solicitor rather than barrister and as you say your English may not be too good you may be best picking the high street type firms as you may have a better chance there. In 2nd year LLB you have probably applied for a lot of vac schemes etc already and TCs but if not once the application season is going concentrate on doing those - some people need to do an awful lot to get anything. You also can apply in September 2024 for starting an SQE1 and 2 course with masters with student loan funding starting the course in Sept 2025 perhaps something like the BPP SQE1/2 course with masters. It has to be a masters just to get the post grad student loan of about £12k to cover most of the course fees.
A question: what do you think that barristers do, and what do you think that solicitors do? The roles of barristers and solicitors are not always well understood by people looking at the professions from the outside.

You express some doubt about your writing skills. Barristers with civil practices do a lot of writing, often more than solicitors do.

My suggestion is that, unless you are absolutely sure that you want to become a barrister, you should aim to become a solicitor. The Bar is not quite a vocation (unlike, for example, being a doctor), but to obtain a career at the Bar you really have to want one. It's a high risk career path, with a high drop out rate, and unless you become a Super Silk you will only ever be as good as your last case. Becoming a solicitor isn't easy, but it's less risky than trying to become a barrister. If you can't decide between the two, that is law's way of telling you to be a solicitor.
(edited 1 week ago)

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