Taught course

Law, Graduate Diploma

Swansea University · College of Law and Criminology

Entry requirements

To enrol on the GDL an applicant must normally have obtained an undergraduate degree awarded by a recognised UK or Republic of Ireland institution. (Please note that those wishing to progress to the Bar should normally have achieved at least a 2 (ii) honours classification in their undergraduate degree .Prospective students whose first language is not English may also be required to demonstrate their language proficiency by achieving IELTS Level 6.

Months of entry


Course content

The Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL), also sometimes referred to as the Common Professional Examination, (CPE), is a programme for non-law graduates, or those with equivalent qualifications, wishing to either enter the legal profession or work in law-relevant employment. No prior knowledge of law is required. The course is designed to facilitate the acquisition of sound legal knowledge in those areas of law which are known as the Foundation subjects, plus one additional area of law. It is designed to provide the legal knowledge necessary to satisfy the academic requirements of the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), Bar Standards Board and the Institute of Legal Executives (ILEX).

The course is structured as follows:

  • The course is preceded by a two-week period of directed reading on the English Legal System and the principles of legal scholarship (no attendance required, home study)
  • Teaching commences with an induction period which includes a short block of lectures and seminars concentrating on the English Legal System, the acquisition of legal skills, and European Union Law
  • The foundation subjects of Contract, Tort, Public Law, Equity & Trusts, Land Law and Criminal Law are taught by means of a series of lectures and compulsory seminars spanning two teaching blocks;
  • A further legal subject is studied by means of a supervised research project;

Information for international students

Since its foundation in 1920, Swansea University has embraced opportunities to think globally. The vibrant mix of nationalities and cultures on campus greatly enriches our learning and teaching environment. We understand the type of support our international students need to help them settle into student life in a new country.

Fees and funding

You may be eligible for funding to help support your study. To find out more about scholarships, bursaries and other funding opportunities that are available please visit the University's scholarships and bursaries page: www.swansea.ac.uk/postgraduate/scholarships

Qualification and course duration


full time
12 months

Course contact details

GDL Office
+44 (0)1792 295913