Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL)

If you’ve completed a non-law degree but want to pursue a career in commercial law, a GDL is the next step.

This law conversion course is condensed into one academic year if you study full-time. Some universities, or more commonly course providers such as BPP University, offer part-time studies. During the GDL, you’ll study the seven key areas of law: Contract Law, Criminal Law, Equity and Trusts, European Union Law, Land Law, Public Law, and Tort.

If you secure a Training Contract with a firm, many will financially support you throughout your studies. Baker McKenzie will pay your GDL course fees and provide a maintenance grant of £8,000 towards living expenses. Please note however that the route to qualifying as a Solicitor is changing with the introduction of the Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQE). We will publish what this means for our future trainees in due course.

A number of firms will hold presentations and skills sessions at the main GDL course providers. However, it’s likely you’ll have less exposure to firms than you will have had at university, so being proactive in your research is key. Many firms offer Vacation Schemes for GDL students, while others offer Open Days. Through research, it’ll be clear which opportunities are available to you and whether you’re eligible to apply.

Baker McKenzie offers a two-week Vacation Scheme during the spring. We also offer a series of Open Days which comprise of presentations, workshops and opportunities to network with Trainee Solicitors, Associates, Partners and Graduate Recruiters. They’re a fantastic way to find out more about the work and culture of the Firm.