Compass with needle pointing towards the phrase 'Justice'
Discover employment and further study opportunities that you could consider once you graduate with a law degree and learn how you can stand out to graduate employers.
We encourage you to:
  • undertake career planning and research
  • build your networks, meet employers and graduates
  • gain essential work experience during your course
  • attend career fairs and events
  • continually develop your skills and knowledge
  • get involved with relevant clubs and societies
  • visit the Careers Service for advice.

Knowledge and skills

Your studies will provide a broad range of skills of value to employers, including:
  • developing critical thinking and making ethical judgements 
  • problem-solving and flexibility 
  • verbal questioning, reasoning and negotiation
  • written communication through report writing
  • teamwork and leadership skills through group projects and work experience
  • resilience and ability to reflect on experiences and challenges
  • planning and project management through independent research tasks
  • collecting and organising varied source material through seminar work and independent assignments
  • evaluating and interpreting complex information (and explaining this to others)
  • time management through juggling different module assessment requirements and work-based learning alongside studies
  • attention to detail through preparing assignments and participating in pro-bono work/work experience
  • orally communicating concisely and clearly.

Career options

There are two main routes to practice law professionally: the Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE) and the Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC). In order to undertake either course you must have an undergraduate Qualifying Law Degree (QLD) or have completed the postgraduate Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL).
The SQE is a new training route for solicitors, with the LPC (Legal Practice Course) ceasing to be a qualifying route by 2032. You should look into both to ensure you find the appropriate way forward
Training barristers undertake pupillage training after the BPTC course, usually for a year. Since 2020, the BPTC course has been gradually replaced with new flexible training pathways.
Gaining your LLB Law degree can offer many different career paths beyond becoming a barrister or solicitor. You could use your diverse legal knowledge to engage with the public, through Citizens Advice, the media or welfare sector. Data scientists and forensic computer analysts share the key skills that law graduates possess, as attention to detail and analysis of complex information are paramount. HR is also a valid path for those interested in expanding their knowledge of employment law.
Since specific career paths may be less obvious it is important to use your research skills to explore the range of opportunities and to consider your personal interests, motivations, values and strengths.
Researching your career options
Given the diversity of career options open to law graduates, it is important to research and explore these fully so that you can make informed decisions about your future.
Employment opportunities 
Below is a snapshot of what some of University of Plymouth law graduates told us they were doing 15 months after graduation. For some graduates, these jobs serve as ‘stepping-stones’ to professional posts by providing relevant workplace experience.
  • Associate Recruitment Consultant
  • Banking Litigation Paralegal
  • Business Development Executive
  • Business Leadership Graduate
  • Commercial Property Paralegal
  • Content Creator
  • Contract Associate
  • Detective Constable
  • Digital Charity Support Officer
  • Digital Marketing Executive
  • Employability Advisor
  • Export Co-ordinator
  • Financial Account Manager
  • Legal Advisor
  • Paralegal
  • Pastoral Support Worker
  • Police Officer
  • Prison Officer
  • Quantity Surveyor
  • Recruitment Consultant
  • Refugee Support Project Coordinator Caseworker
  • Stalking Advocacy Caseworker
  • Trade Control Analyst
  • Trainee Broker
  • Trainee Paralegal
  • Trainee Solicitor
  • Bedfordshire Police
  • Beers LLP
  • Black Country Women's Aid
  • Bright Solicitors
  • Bristol City Council
  • Centrica Plc
  • Collins Aerospace
  • Curtis Whiteford Crocker Solicitors
  • Devon and Cornwall Police
  • Foot Anstey LLP
  • GA Solicitors
  • Gard & Co Solicitors
  • Justice Abroad
  • Metropolitan Police
  • Michelmores
  • Nalders
  • Nash & Co Solicitors
  • NHS
  • Porter Dodson LLP
  • Ralph & Co Solicitors LLP
  • Stokes Partners LLP
  • Surrey Constabulary
  • The British Red Cross
  • Wiltshire Police Force
  • Wolferstans Solicitors LLP
  • Womble Bond Dickenson
*Data is from the Graduate Outcomes Surveys covering the three years of 2018/19 – 2020/21. Graduates were surveyed 15 months after graduating. Data displayed is for UK-domiciled, first degree, full-time graduates who are working, studying or looking for work.

Further study

Some of the careers chosen by law graduates will require or benefit from further study, so this should be considered carefully. The University of Plymouth offers the following postgraduate study options that could be of interest:
You should consider the financial implications of further study as well as selecting a programme that suits your interests, learning style and future career direction. The following websites are a good starting point for exploring postgraduate options, but you may also benefit from talking to a Careers Consultant about your individual situation.
Some useful websites to help you find a suitable postgraduate programme:
It is also worth investigating what further study options the University has to offer as you may find the perfect course for yourself in an institution you already know. There are also sometimes financial benefits of staying on such as a fee discount to Alumni – find out your funding options.

Careers Service support

Accessing support from the Careers Service couldn’t be easier, come along to the Careers Service Helpdesk in the Student Hub or access 24/7 online resources.
There is a wide range of support available from skills workshops to events, placements and internships advice, 1-2-1 appointments and help getting started with LinkedIn.
Our bite-sized Skills Workshops can give your career the boost it needs. Choose from a range of topics:
  • effective career planning
  • job hunting techniques
  • finding part-time work
  • CVs and interviews
  • mastering LinkedIn
  • and more.
Workshops are delivered by the careers service, however they are also an opportunity to learn from your peers, share experiences and ask questions. Visit myCareer to see the full range of activities and to book your place.

Connect with graduates

Build your network and job sector knowledge using LinkedIn alumni’s tool. This will allow you to see the career journeys of graduates from your programme, the qualifications they completed, the skills they developed and employers they worked for. You can then ‘connect’ with people of interest.
  • search LinkedIn for ‘University of Plymouth’
  • select ‘Alumni’
  • filter the results by subject, sector, company or location.
For more information about the alumni tool select the LinkedIn alumni tool guide. If you are looking for help to set up or learn how to make the most of your LinkedIn profile, select the LinkedIn guide for students or come to one of our workshops.

Other advice and guidance

Gaining work experience
Undertaking work experience in your first and second years will help you stand out from the crowd when the time comes for you to complete applications for graduate employment and further study. Work experience develops valuable skills and qualities that employers are looking for and is essential for many roles. It can also help you to confirm or rule out particular career choices. Furthermore, experience in the workplace can bring you into contact with people who may be able to assist you at the beginning of your career. 
You have plenty of options open to you. You could work part-time around your studies, undertake volunteering or approach organisations directly to negotiate short periods of work experience. Some organisations offer paid internships over the summer or of one year’s duration. 
The University of Plymouth Students’ Union offers a wide range of volunteering opportunities.
Plymouth Law Clinic
The Law Clinic can be an invaluable way for law students to gain experience while studying. You can gain insight into law in practice by managing real cases in real settings. The best ways to get involved with the clinic are through an assessed module or by volunteering.
Clubs and societies
Engaging in a sport or society shows employers you are engaged and seek out opportunities, it also helps you improve your teamwork, communication and negotiation skills. Committee members can develop leadership, diplomacy and organisational skills and will gain experience of meetings, handling funds, and society promotion. 
You may choose to join a society that is specifically linked to law or take the opportunity to explore the huge range of clubs, societies and sports, all of which can help you to broaden your horizons and explore new interests. 
Tutor and academic support
Your tutor and other academic staff are an excellent source of support for your career development. They will have experience and contacts across industry and academia, so do approach them for advice and insights into careers you are considering. Your tutor will ultimately be writing references for your employment or further study applications, therefore establishing a positive relationship with this person is invaluable.

Listen to our law careers podcast

In this four-part podcast mini-series, we discuss some of the most common career paths for students studying law. We focus on practical advice, including what skills are needed, how you actually go about entering the chosen career and what to look out for when you choose a programme and modules.

Episode 1: Solicitor

26 February 2021

Host: Dr Simone Schroff; Guest: Rosie Brennan

This week, practicing solicitor and Director of the Plymouth Law Clinic, Rosie Brennan, provides insights into successfully qualifying as a solicitor. 

Listen now

Law legal solicitor

Episode 2: Barrister

5 March 2021

Host: Dr Simone Schroff; Guest: Jonathan Ward

Practicing barrister, Jonathan Ward (Magdalen Chambers), explains the work a barrister does, how to qualify and how your law degree can support you.

Listen now

Law barrister

Episode 3: Legal Consultant

12 March 2021

Host: Dr Simone Schroff; Guest: Sarah Guy

Sarah Guy shares her practical advice on entering the field of legal consultancy, advising companies on compliance with the law.

Listen now

Law legal consultant

Episode 4: Researcher

19 March 2021

Host: Dr Simone Schroff; Guest: Dr Lisa Deblasio

In our final episode, Dr Lisa Deblasio shows how you can become a researcher, the skills involved and how your chosen degree can support your choice.

Listen now

Law podcast researcher
Student Hub

Where could your degree subject take you?

Architecture and built environment
Biological sciences
Business, economics, management, marketing, accounting and finance, and maritime and logistics
Creative arts: art, illustration and photography
Design: interior/product and furniture design, graphic design and game arts/digital design
Earth, geography and environment
Education and teaching
Hospitality, tourism and events management
Humanities: anthropology, art history, English and history
Law, criminology and policing
Mathematical sciences
Media and filmmaking
Medicine, dentistry and biomedical sciences
Nursing, midwifery and allied health professions
Performing arts: acting, drama and musical theatre
Sociology, international relations and politics