ABS Alternative Business Structure, licensed by (at present) the SRA or CLC to provide legal services under the Legal Services Act 2007.
Academic stage the undergraduate law degree or its equivalent (see also ‘initial stage’).
ACCA Association of Chartered Certified Accountants.
Accreditation Of training/specialisation: a ‘kitemark’ or specialist recognition given to an entity (qv) or individual that attains a specified practice standard. The standard may or may not require periodic re-evaluation or re-assessment. Of CPD providers: system for approving CPD providers adopted by a regulatory or representative body.
ACL Association of Costs Lawyers, representative body for costs lawyers.
ACLEC Lord Chancellor’s Advisory Committee on Legal Education and Conduct.
Activity-based (Usually in conjunction with authorisation or regulation). Where the licence to practise is restricted to an ‘activity’ (eg will-writing, advocacy). An activity can be best understood as a coherent area or field of competence.
Activity-based regulation used in this report to indicate regulation by field of competence, rather than by professional title.
Admission to the Roll qualification as a solicitor, following completion of the training contract, QLTS or transfer from CILEx membership.
AP(E)L Accreditation of prior (experiential) learning.
APIL Association of Personal Injury Lawyers.
Apprenticeship A government-supported programme of work-based learning (qv) for those who are 16+ and not currently in full-time education. Apprenticeships involve a structured training programme based on National Occupational Standards (qv). They combine skills training through on-the-job experience, with classroom-based functional skills training in Maths, English, and IT (as required), along with job related qualifications and workplace mentoring and supervision. Work on legal apprenticeships is being led by Skills for Justice (the Sector Skills Council for legal services), with the first funded apprenticeships available from Spring 2013, with CILEx qualifications being used to provide the job-related knowledge and technical skills. Longer term there is potential within the apprenticeship scheme to develop higher apprenticeships with learning at levels 6-7 (qv) which could permit progression directly into the solicitors’ profession.
Authenticity (of assessment) Assessment is authentic when students are asked to perform real-world tasks that demonstrate the meaningful application of essential knowledge and skills. (See also ‘practice validity’).
Authorisation The process by which a person or entity (qv) (‘authorised person’) is permitted to undertake a reserved activity (qv) by an approved regulator.
Bar Council the representative body for barristers in England and Wales.
Barrister a lawyer regulated by the Bar Standards Board.
BCAT The Bar Course Aptitude Test, now implemented as an entry requirement for the BPTC (qv).
BDRC BRDC Continental, a research consultancy which carried out a consumer benchmarking survey for the LSB in 2012 and whose data is referred to in this report.
BIS Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.
Blended/integrated learning In the LETR context these terms are used to describe a programme of learning that links or integrates learning across the traditional stages of training, eg, by combining academic and vocational education in an exempting degree that satisfies the requirements for the LLB and LPC/BPTC, or involves vocational training concurrently with working under supervision (eg, integrated LPC and training contract; CILEx qualifications and those of the smaller professions). A distinction is made in blended models between learning that simply occurs concurrently with work, and learning that is designed to be consistent between the two environments in order to achieve practice validity (qv).
BME black and minority ethnic.
BP LETR Briefing Paper (1/2011, 1/2012, 2/2012, 3/2012, 4/2012).
BPTC Bar Professional Training Course, postgraduate vocational education for intending barristers.
BRIC(A) Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa.
BSB Bar Standards Board, regulator of barristers.
BTE ‘Before the event’. Legal insurance policies with general coverage, to be contrasted with those taken out once litigation has become contemplated (ATE or ‘after the event’ policies).
BTT Bar Transfer Test, an assessment for incoming foreign lawyers and solicitors who wish to transfer into the Bar.
BVC Bar Vocational Course (precursor of the BPTC), postgraduate vocational education for intending barristers.
Call qualification as a barrister.
Chartered Legal Executive a member of CILEx who has attained full fellowship status.
CILEx member used in this report as an umbrella term for all grades of CILEx membership.
CILEx Chartered Institute of Legal Executives, representative body for CILEx members.
CIPA Chartered Institute of Patent Attorneys, representative body for patent attorneys.
CIPD Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.
CIPFA Chartered Institute for Public Finance and Accountancy.
CLC Council for Licensed Conveyancers, regulator of licensed conveyancers and their entities, including ABSs.
Client used in this report to denote those who are using specific legal service providers.
CLSB Costs Lawyer Standards Board, regulator of costs lawyers.
CMC in this report, a claims management company regulated by the Claims Management Regulator.
COFA Compliance Officer – Finance and Administration (under LSA 2007).
COLP Compliance Officer – Legal Practice (under LSA 2007).
Competences/competencies A set of statements that describe the specific skills, knowledge and understanding needed to undertake a particular task or job competently.
Consumer used in this report to denote all those who are actual or potential users of legal services in England and Wales.
Continuing learning used in this report to describe concepts of post-qualification learning and education in a broader sense than is usually understood by CPD (qv).
Costs lawyer a lawyer specialising in costs work who is regulated by the Costs Lawyer Standards Board.
CPD Continuing Professional Development. Generally in the legal services sector a regulatory requirement that a certain number of hours of explicit educational activity be undertaken each year.
CPE Common Professional Examination, more commonly now GDL.
CSP LETR Consultation Steering Panel.
‘Day one’ outcomes A set of outcomes that describe competence at the point of qualification or entry into professional practice. The concept is used in a range of professional contexts. Day one outcomes for solicitors were defined as part of the Law Society/SRA Training Framework Review and are currently used for the SRA Qualified Lawyers Transfer Scheme. Day one outcomes for CILEx members appear in the CILEx Competency framework and for barristers in the outcomes statements for pupillage.
DBA damages based agreement, a form of contingency fee available under LASPO.
DP LETR Discussion paper (01/2011, 02/2011, 01/2012, 02/2012).
EDSM Equality, diversity and social mobility.
Employed barrister a member of the Bar working in-house in commerce, finance and industry or in local or central government.
Employed barrister a member of the Bar working in-house in commerce, finance and industry or in local or central government.
Entity A term that is increasingly used to describe an organisation (commonly a law firm or ABS) that is regulated by an approved regulator. The move to ‘entity regulation’ by some approved regulators has been triggered by the treatment of ABSs as ‘authorised persons’ under the LSA 2007, which phrase expressly includes ‘a licensable body which… is authorised to carry on the relevant activity by a licensing authority….’ (s.18(1)(b) LSA 2007).
EPO European Patent Office.
Exempting degree In England and Wales, a QLD which also contains the LPC or BPTC. Degrees may also exempt from or be accredited for other qualifications, such as those of CILEx or paralegal organisations. In Scotland, a law degree which entitles the graduate to proceed into the vocational stage..
F2f face to face.
FE further education.
Foundations/Foundation subjects The required areas of law that must be studied as part of and constitute not less than half the credits for a Qualifying Law Degree (qv) and must be covered in the Graduate Diploma in Law (qv). The Foundation subjects are criminal law, equity and trusts, EU law, obligations (contract, tort and restitution), property law, and public law.
FTP File transfer protocol. A protocol for transferring files over the internet.
GCSE General Certificate of Secondary Education.
GDL Graduate Diploma in Law; a qualification for non-law graduates, or law graduates without a Qualifying Law Degree (qv), which satisfies the initial stage of training for the BSB and SRA. See also CPE.
Gearing (in a law firm or similar organisation). The ratio of fee-earners who are not profit-sharing partners to profit-sharing partners; higher gearing should indicate higher profitability.
Government lawyer used in this report as an umbrella term for a regulated lawyers working in local or central government.
Graduateness The qualities of being a graduate or educated to a graduate-equivalent standard; the knowledge skills and attributes that graduates (etc) will have at the point of exiting that stage of education.
HE higher education.
HEFCE Higher Education Funding Council for England.
HEFCW Higher Education Funding Council for Wales.
HEI Higher Education Institution (university or HE sector college).
HESA Higher Education Statistics Agency.
ICAEW Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.
ICT Information and communication technology.
IER Warwick Institute for Employment Research.
In-house lawyer used in this report as an umbrella term for regulated lawyers working in-house in commerce, local or central government.
Initial stage A phrase originally developed by the Advisory Committee on Legal Education and Conduct to include those initial qualifications (the QLD and GDL/CPE) completion of which permitted students to progress to vocational legal education and training for the barristers’ and solicitors’ professions. See also ‘academic stage’.
Inns of Court professional associations for barristers responsible for calling members to the Bar and some disciplinary functions.
IoP Institute of Paralegals.
IP attorney used in this report as a collective term for patent and registered trade mark attorneys.
IPReg Intellectual Property Regulation Board, regulator of both patent and registered trade mark attorneys and related registered bodies.
IPS ILEX Professional Standards, regulator of CILEx members.
ITMA Institute of Trade Mark Attorneys.
JASB Joint Academic Stage Board.
Larger professions used in this report to refer collectively to barristers, CILEx members and solicitors.
LASPO Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012.
Law Society Law Society of England and Wales (unless otherwise stated), representative body for solicitors.
Legal Services Board/LSB Oversight regulator for legal services under LSA 2007.
LETR Legal Education and Training Review.
Level (of learning) Academic, technical and professional qualifications within the national qualification framework for England and Wales are ascribed a level/levels which indicate(s) the range, depth and complexity of learning that must be achieved to obtain that qualification. Levels run from Level 0 to 9. As an indication of equivalence, GCSE = level 2; A level/Welsh Baccalaureate Advanced level = level 3; levels 4-6 = first degree; level 7 = Masters or higher professional qualifications; 8 = doctorate or equivalent.
Licensed conveyancer a lawyer specialising in property work who is regulated by the CLC.
LLB Bachelor of Laws. Designator for an undergraduate law degree (although law degrees and QLDs may be designated BA at some institutions).
LLM Master of Laws, a level 7 qualification.
LNAT The National Admissions Test for Law: a test of verbal reasoning (aptitude test) for admission to undergraduate law used alongside standard methods of selection such as A Level results and admissions interviews, to assess the student’s abilities. The LNAT is currently used by nine UK universities as part their admissions process.
LPC Legal Practice Course, postgraduate vocational course for intending solicitors.
LSA 2007 Legal Services Act 2007.
LSCP Legal Services Consumer Panel.
LSET legal services education and training. A term used in this report to indicate education specifically for work in the sector. ‘Legal education’ can be used to include both this and education in law not necessarily linked to preparation for work in the sector.
LSF Law Society Finals Examination (precursor of the LPC).
Management Course Stage 1 a mandatory course for solicitors in their first three years post qualification.
MASS Motor Accident Solicitors Society
Master of the Faculties regulator of notaries.
MBA Master of Business Administration, a level 7 qualification.
MDP multidisciplinary practice.
Modularisation Where a programme is broken down or disaggregated into discrete units of study, usually to enable more customised or flexible combinations of units.
NALP National Association of Licensed Paralegals.
National Occupational Standards (NOS) Nationally agreed statements of the standards of performance individuals must achieve when carrying out functions in the workplace, together with specifications of the underpinning knowledge and understanding – see NOS have been developed by employers in association with relevant Sector Skills Councils.
New Practitioners Programme mandatory programme for barristers in their first three years of practice.
New York State Bar examination (NYBE) The examination for admission to the New York State Bar.
NfP not for profit.
Notary/notary public a lawyer specialising in preparing and authenticating documents, who is regulated by the Master of the Faculties.
NQF National Qualifications Framework for England and Wales.
NVivo proprietary qualitative data analysis software used by the LETR research team.
NVQ National Vocational Qualification: England, Wales and Northern Ireland. In Scotland, SVQ. See also National Occupational Standards.
OBET used in this report to describe outcomes-based education and training.
OFFA Office for Fair Access.
OfQual regulator of GCSE, A level and some vocational qualifications in England. It liaises with the Welsh Government in respect of qualifications in Wales.
OFR Outcomes-focused regulation: a risk-based regulatory regime in which professional standards are based on a system of general principles and high level outcomes which individuals and/or entities must achieve. (See, eg, the regulatory regimes introduced by the Solicitors Regulation Authority and the Council for Licensed Conveyances in October 2011; other regulators are also developing OFR, or consulting on the extent to which they should adopt OFR).
OISC Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner.
Ormrod (1971) Report of the Committee on Legal Education, Cmnd. No.4595. London: HMSO.
OSCE Objective structured clinical examination, a form of practical assessment used in medical education and in the QLTS.
Outcome Learning: a performance statement; statements which define the learning students are expected to have acquired on completion of a module, or course of study. Regulation: statements which define the ends which a regulated person/entity must achieve but which leave that regulated person/entity free (or relatively free) to determine the means. (eg, an SRA client care outcome thus requires that: ‘O(1.12) clients are in a position to make informed decisions about the services they need, how their matter will be handled and the options available to them’.)
Output (CPD) A CPD system that addresses outputs enables the learner to focus on what is achieved that improves competence. In simple terms it contrasts with an input-based system which emphasise inputs to learning such as how much time is spent on each activity, or the types of activity that are permitted, though systems may use a combination of input and output specifications.
Paralegal qualifications A broad range of qualifications provided by representative bodies, but which do not lead to authorisation under the LSA 2007, or practice under other protected title (Chartered Legal Executive). Such qualifications include CILEx level 2 and 3 (qv) certificates and diplomas, National Association of Licensed Paralegals diplomas, accreditation by the Institute of Paralegals and specific awards in the advice sector.
Paralegal a role in the legal services sector which is not formally defined but is applied to a person who is not a fully qualified member of one of the regulated professions. It may be applied both to those working in regulated entities and those working in the unregulated sector.
Partial authorisation Or ‘partial access’ to a reserved activity (qv). Under proposed revisions to Directive 2005/36/EC, approved regulators or other competent authority in a host Member State shall be required to grant other EU legal professionals partial access to a professional activity in its territory where certain conditions are fulfilled. This could lead to some disaggregation of professional activities from their titles, and hence to an element of activity-based authorisation (qv) ‘by the back door’.
Patent attorney a lawyer specialising in patent work who is regulated by IPReg.
Personal plight used in this report to indicate consumers who are individuals seeking advice about problems in eg, family or criminal law.
Portfolio A personal collection of material representing the outcomes (qv) achieved by a learner and the evidence showing how those outcomes were achieved. Portfolios are widely used in technical and professional education, and as a feature of output (qv)-based CPD (eg, in the medical profession).
Post-1992 university a group of universities in England, Scotland and Wales given that status under (or as a result of) the Further and Higher Education Act 1992. Many, but not all, are former polytechnics.
Practice validity used in this report to describe educational activities and assessment which are consistent with practice in the legal services sector.
Problem-based learning (PBL) A style of curriculum and teaching developed originally at McMaster Medical School in Canada which uses relatively sophisticated scenarios or ‘problems’ as the primary trigger for learning. The method is seen as more student-centred than traditional teaching approaches, relying heavily on small group classes. In the UK York Law School is unique in organising its LLB curriculum predominantly around PBL.
Professional Skills Course a mandatory programme undertaking during the training contract for intending solicitors.
ProcureCo a corporate vehicle allowing barristers increased flexibility of practice model. See
PSC Professional Skills Course, a mandatory course undertaken during the training contract.
Pupillage 12 month period of supervised practice for barristers prior to independent practice. Also ‘pupil barrister’, ‘pupil supervisor’.
QA Quality assurance. In education, mechanisms for monitoring the structures and standards of educational activity.
QAA Quality Assurance Agency for UK higher education.
QASA Quality Assurance Scheme for Advocates.
QLD Qualifying Law Degree: a degree that satisfies the BSB/SRA requirements for the initial stage of training. A QLD must address the Foundation (qv) subjects, meet the Quality Assurance Agency’s Benchmark standard for Law (prescribed knowledge and transferable skills) and provide training in legal research.
QLTS Qualified Lawyer Transfer Scheme, an assessment for incoming foreign lawyers and barristers (post pupillage) who wish to transfer into the solicitors’ profession.
QLTT Qualified Lawyer Transfer Test. The precursor of the QLTS.
Qualifying employment Five year (from 2013, three year) period of supervised practice completed prior to obtaining Chartered Legal Executive status.
Re-accreditation used in this report as an umbrella term for systems of periodic post-qualification appraisal or assessment.
ReDOC Resolution of Disputes out of Court is a separately taught and assessed subject on the BPTC.
Registered trade mark attorney a lawyer specialising in trade mark work who is regulated by IPReg.
Regulated sector those delivering legal services as authorised persons or as paralegals working under supervision within a regulated environment, such as traditional law firm entities, ABSs and any other licensed entities under the LSA 2007.
Regulatory objectives The eight objectives specified by s.1(1) LSA 2007 which set out the purposes of lawyer regulation and the parameters for regulatory action.
Reserved activity A legal activity specified in s.12 and Sched 2 LSA 2007 which can only be undertaken by or under the supervision of an ‘authorised person’ (see authorisation, qv). The reserved legal activities are the exercise of a right of audience, the conduct of litigation, reserved instrument activities, probate activities, notarial activities and the administration of oaths.
RIBA Royal Institute of British Architects.
RICS Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.
Russell Group a group of 24 pre-1992 universities in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
SCQF Scottish Credit and Qualifications framework.
Scrivener notary a specialist notary with particular linguistic expertise, who is regulated by the Master of the Faculties.
SES socio-economic status.
Simulation Simulated learning is intended to provide more realistic learning experiences than conventional classroom teaching. Simulations may operate through role plays and realistic tasks to mimic legal transactions in real time. IT software (so-called ‘serious games’ technology) can also be used to deliver transactional learning in a virtual learning environment. Simulation tools are widely used in medicine as a substitute for some clinical training, and are increasingly common in legal education.
Skills for Justice The Sector Skills Council for law.
SLS Society of Licensed Conveyancers, a professional association for licensed conveyancers.
Smaller professions used in this report to refer collectively to costs lawyers, IP attorneys, licensed conveyancers and notaries.
Solicitor a lawyer who is regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.
SPSS proprietary quantitative data analysis software used by the LETR research team.
SRA Solicitors Regulation Authority, regulator of solicitors, solicitors’ firms and ABSs.
Standardised client A standardised client is a lay person trained to role play a client for the purposes of assessment, and to participate in assessment decisions. The client is taken through a rigorous process which enables understanding of the assessment criteria and consensus on assessment standards to be reached. The aim is to achieve greater levels of consistency and authenticity (qv) in assessment than by conventional means. Standardised patients are widely used in medical education and (as clients) are being used by the SRA in the Qualified Lawyers’ Transfer Scheme, and in a growing number of other jurisdictions.
Stratification used in this report to describe the extent to which legal services providers have become differentiated in response to the increased segmentation of the legal services market.
Supervised practice umbrella term used in this report for required periods of supervised practice prior to qualification (eg the training contract) or, for barristers and notaries, prior to independent practice.
SurveyMonkey proprietary software used by the research team to create online surveys.
TFR The Law Society’s Training Framework Review.
Trainee used in this report as an umbrella term for individuals in training for one of the regulated professions (including pupil barristers)
Training contract Two year (normally) period of pre-qualification supervised practice for intending solicitors. Also ‘trainee solicitor’, ‘training principal’.
Triage adopted by analogy in this report from the medical practice of prioritising order of treatment of patients by assessment of the severity of their conditions.
UCAS Universities and Colleges Admissions Service.
Vocational stage the LPC, BPTC or their equivalents.
Widening participation An umbrella term used particularly in higher education (HE) to include a range of policies and initiatives to facilitate and increase the participation of groups, which are currently under represented in HE.
Work-based learning (WBL) There is no consistent definition of WBL; it can be used widely to define any formal (ie, structured, intentional learning) that takes place within the workplace, or more narrowly to describe systems of blended (qv) learning or ‘learn while you earn’ approaches which combine classroom and workplace learning. In this report the term may apply specifically to the SRA or IPS schemes.