Taught course

Bar Course

Northumbria University · Faculty of Business and Law
Bar Course

Entry requirements

Applicants should normally have a minimum of a 2:1 honours degree in Law or a minimum of a Commendation in the Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL). Applicants with a 2:2 honours degree or a Pass in the GDL will be considered exceptionally on an individual basis.

All applicants are required to join one of the four Inns of Court before commencing the course, and applicants must pass the Bar Course Aptitude Test (BCAT) introduced by the Bar Standards Board (BSB). Applicants must have achieved a minimum standard as specified by the BSB within the past five years. For more information please visit www.barstandardsboard.org.uk.

Months of entry


Course content

In a demanding and rapidly changing legal landscape, the highest quality training is required to succeed as a barrister. Northumbria University’s Bar Course will support you in gaining the necessary knowledge and practical skills that are essential to practice at the modern Bar.

The new Bar course replaces the former Bar Professional Training Course. Teaching on Northumbria’s Bar Course is led by a team of highly experienced barristers and supported by a well-established network of members of the Bar, Judges and other practitioners.

You will study:

  • Civil Litigation (incorporating evidence and alternative dispute resolution)
  • Criminal Litigation (incorporating evidence and sentencing)
  • Advocacy
  • Conferencing
  • Drafting
  • Opinion Writing
  • Professional Ethics
  • Legal Research

From our law school you will develop the knowledge and skills to practice in a broad range of briefs. These are focused on the foundation areas of pupillage and early practice. From the outset you will be taught to think and behave like a barrister. You will be instructed in cases conducted as in practice, incorporating conferences, advocacy, drafting and opinion writing. You will also learn your professional, ethical obligations. This invaluable, practical experience will equip you to be immediately effective in pupillage.

You will benefit from generous contact hours throughout the course including dedicated exam-focused teaching sessions . During which the teaching team will share their expertise to support you in preparing for the Bar Standards Board (BSB) centralised assessments. Alongside practice-focused teaching, students will also benefit from a year-long series of workshops designed to support knowledge, understanding and exam techniques and preparation for these assessments. You may also gain, at no further cost, an additional qualification in Mediation.

Northumbria delivers opportunities to develop distinctive and unique knowledge and skills with opportunities to undertake:

  • Vulnerable witness training
  • Practitioner advocacy masterclasses
  • Teaching in respect of forensic science and forensic statistics
  • Participation in international mooting competitions
  • A mentoring scheme delivered in conjunction with the Bar

Together these opportunities in Bar training will allow you to distinguish yourself in a competitive environment and ultimately thrive in this prestigious profession.

On successful completion of the Bar Course you will be eligible for Call to the Bar of England and Wales (subject to meeting the qualifying requirements of your Inn of Court)

Information for international students

International applicants are required to have a minimum overall IELTS (Academic) score of 6.5 with 5.5 in each component (or approved equivalent).

Qualification, course duration and attendance options

  • Bar Course
    part time
    24 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification
    full time
    12 months
    • Campus-based learningis available for this qualification

Course contact details

Admissions Office
0191 227 4453