The Professional Skills Course is a compulsory course designed to help those training to become a solicitor in England and Wales develop the skill set required of an effective lawyer.
As a long-standing SRA accredited provider, BARBRI Altior delivers a PSC course that ensures trainee solicitors become competent to practise and can meet the ever-evolving needs of their clients. The course consists of four core modules, combined with 24 hours of electives (where applicable).
After taking all of our course online in 2020, in 2021, we are re-introducing classroom courses back into our offering, subject to government restrictions. With our complete PSC now available to complete online, the potential to pick and mix between on and offline learning for a truly blended flexible approach has never been easier.
We will continue to monitor government COVID-19 advice and make decisions and changes to our programmes to ensure your safety and well-being.
The PSC course must be completed as part of a trainee solicitor’s compulsory training, during the training contract or by FCILEx members wishing to become qualified.
Why take the PSC with BARBRI Altior?
- Flexible and convenient course format.
- Wide and varied choice of electives.
- Recordings of Live Online sessions provided after the course to assist with revision.
- Public courses and, in addition, provisions for the Public Sector, City firms and firms who wish to run the course in house.
- Expert trainers delivering high-quality knowledge and skills training.
- A bespoke learning management system (LMS)
- A completely interactive experience, using scenarios and case studies to embed learning.
- For firms specialising in commercial and corporate work, we also offer a tailored ‘City’ version of the course that delivers the PSC content using relevant case studies and scenarios.
- A certificate is issued following successful completion of the course which can be submitted to the SRA.
As outlined by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), the PSC course should be completed within the two-year training contract or within a period of recognised training. If you are exempt from recognised training, it then must be completed before admission.
The SRA no longer confines the PSC to a set schedule. Modules can be studied in the order best suited to training need as well as across varying locations and dates. To study the programme at the best pace for you, and to secure your preferred choice of electives, it is always advised to plan your PSC as early as you can.
We suggest that you complete your PSC at least eight weeks prior to the end of your training contract to try to avoid a delay in your Roll application. Delegates can study their modules in the order best suited to their training needs, so you can take the courses in whatever order you choose.
The Professional Skills Course Core Modules can be studied via these three options.
- Live Online full-day training – Same format and timings as the traditional classroom training, except it is delivered online.
- Live Online Multi-Session training – Bite-sized format of the Client Care & Professional Standards and Financial & Business Skills delivered over 3-5 days to help fit training into the working day
- Classroom training (External City Venue) – Standard full-day classroom training
Putting your package together
One benefit of choosing BARBRI Altior as your main training provider means you will be able to create a bespoke package to fit your training needs. For example, if you wanted to take advantage of the blended flexible learning, you can create packages like this:
- Client Care and Professional Standards – Multi-Session
- Financial and Business Skills – Classroom (External City Venue)
- Advocacy and Communication Skills – Live Online Full Day
- Client Care – Live Online Full Day
- Professional Standards – Live Online Full Day
- Financial and Business Skills – Multi-Session
- Financial and Business Skills Exam for Multi-Session – Classroom (External City Venue)
- Advocacy and Communication Skills – Classroom (External City Venue)
Please note, our Advocacy and Communications Skills module Is only available to complete through the Live Online full-day training and Classroom training.
In addition to the Core Modules, trainees (unless exempt) must complete 24 hours of electives, at least 12 hours of which must be taken as face to face tuition. Every BARBRI Altior face to face elective has a Live Online equivalent, meaning you can complete your Elective requirement remotely.
Did you know that you can do the Higher Rights of Audience (HRA) Training course as an alternative to the Electives?
If when you qualify advocacy or litigation will be central to your role, then completing the HRA training to fulfil the elective requirement could be an attractive option for you. You can complete the training during your training contract, and once you are admitted to the Roll, you can then compete the HRA Assessments and become qualified to practise in the Higher Courts.
Are you are struggling to satisfy the contentious element of your training contract?
Experience the litigation process first-hand and overcome the difficulties in satisfying the contentious element of the training contract with the BARBRI Altior Trainee Litigation Programme (TLP). The programme has been specifically designed to expose trainee solicitors, through a variety of activities, to all the contentious practice skills standards stipulated by the SRA as being a requirement of the training contract (period of recognised training).
Client Care & Professional Standards
Can be taken over 2 days or 3 half-day sessions across 3 days.
- Appreciate the importance of professional ethics in your practice as a solicitor and gain a better understanding of what the term “Client Care” really means and involves.
- Understand the scope of the solicitors’ retainer.
- Understand your client and how to build effective working relationships with them.
- Be aware of the symptoms of poor time management and learn ways to manage your time and client matters effectively.
- Appreciate the importance of the professional regulations and sanctions imposed on all solicitors.
- Actively manage risk in your practice.
Financial & Business Skills
Can be taken over 3 days or 5 half-day sessions across 5 days. Includes a 1 ½ hour face to face written examination.
- Accounting and Financial Issues
- Introduction to the Market Place
- The Regulatory Framework
- The Law Society / SRA Rules
- Money Laundering
- Mortgage Fraud
The examination for this module is split into two parts:
Part 1 – Multiple Choice (30 marks)
Part 2 – Case Studies (70 marks)
The examination is open book, and you will need a 60% mark to pass.
Advocacy & Communication Skills
This is a three-day module. Three weeks before the start of this module, delegates are sent a case study, the facts of which they are expected to assimilate in readiness for the course. Delegates are allocated their roles on day one of the module and participate in mock trials on all three days which are assessed throughout by the trainer.
- You will be able to deal with client care issues in a more competent manner on a day to day basis within your firms.
- You will have a better understanding of how to manage your time and client matters more effectively.
- You will have improved your ability to deal with complaints and difficult clients.
- You will have improved your ability to deal with the topics discussed today when faced with issues relating to them in practice.
- You will have a better understanding of how to help manage risk within your practice.
- You will understand the financial principles used when managing company and client accounts.
- On completion of the advocacy module, trainees should be able to exercise the rights of audience available on admission in the civil and criminal courts.
- PSC core plus 24 hours of electives (with coursework) £1275.00 (+vat)
- PSC core plus Higher Rights training £1785.00 (+vat)
- PSC core plus Higher Rights training and assessment £2185.00 (+vat)*
- PSC core only (FCilex) £1085.00 (+vat)
- FBS online exam preparation module £45.00 (+vat)
Core modules and elective courses can also be sold separately, please call us on 029 2045 1000 to discuss your requirements.
*Please note, you will only be able to sit the Higher Rights assessments after qualification under the SRA regulations. Read more here.