The SQE: The benefits and looking forward

  • Intermediate
  • Released 4th Apr 2022
  • Shane Robson
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After a round-up and recap of the new SQE, this video will look at some of the additional elements that have yet to be discussed such as the benefits to companies and firms along with those to the candidates taking the exams.

There will be a brief consideration of costs that could be incurred if a firm were to pay for the SQE for its staff and the returns. We will also consider how learners can ‘earn whilst they learn’ on their journey to becoming a solicitor. Furthermore, we shall consider how the emphasis of ‘training’ a solicitor to the SRA standards has now moved to the candidate through the SQE2 assessments rather than a training contract.

It is now the SRA through the SQE testing the competency of the candidate and thus creating a more level playing field across the board.

This ‘chapter’ will also demonstrate the benefits to recruitment outside of England and Wales with exemptions to certain elements of the exams with dual qualifications made easy.

The video will also consider benefits to a candidate, such as the ability to reduce costs compared to the LPC route as well as the complex nature of obtaining a training contract. Those already in firms or working will see a benefit to understanding some of the ‘new’ assessments, particularly for SQE2 which could result in them qualifying sooner.

Finally, we will take a look at the current successes of the most recent SQE1 exams with a look to the future as discussed with the SRA.

What does the SQE cost?

Whilst some of costs, such as a degree, will still be applicable to the new SQE route, it aims to segment those costs - The total fee to take both SQE assessments will be a £3,980, which will cover:

  • SQE1 - with a fee of £1,558 for the two examinations.
  • SQE2 - with a fee of £2,422 for the written and oral tasks.

How will the SQE affect law firms?

Where firms have previously had scholarships or similar for candidates, they now have the potential of using funds to help more people, whereas before they might be offering funding for 1 candidate at £15,000, this could now be split across 3 candidates fundamentally generating more revenue from successful candidates becoming solicitors.

While such hands-on law firm work experience is of course invaluable, it is important to note that the SQE is still a standardised examination. This of course can be reasonably expected for some of the larger city firms but when you look to some of the smaller high street firms they are yet to develop new programmes – This allows them the opportunity to partner with training providers again with the potential of saving time and money and raising home grown talent.

This is the third of three videos that aim to explore the Solicitors Qualifying Exam (SQE).

Have a question? If you have any comments or feedback on this content, please get in touch.

Learning objectives:

  • To understand how the SQE could impact a business and its staff
  • Understand what the SQE costs
  • To show how the route could ‘fast track’ some candidates to becoming a solicitor of England and Wales
  • To highlight how a candidate and business can benefit from the SQE and how the SQE affects law firms
  • To see what the future holds.


Your CPD Certificate can be found in your Account.

Shane Robson

Academic Support Officer • Law Training Centre

Shane is the Academic Support Officer at Law Training centre and a university lecturer based in the West Midlands. He has a First class degree in Law and Practice and a Masters degree in International Law. He teaches students from foundation level to Degree level and also teaches on the CILEx professional law courses.

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