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Demystifying the Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE)

Demystifying the Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE)

Are you an aspiring solicitor looking to kickstart your legal career? If so, you’ve probably heard about the Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE). But what exactly is the SQE, and how does it affect your path to becoming a solicitor? In this blog post, we’ll demystify the SQE, providing you with all the essential information you need to know.

What is the SQE?

The Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE) is a new assessment that will replace the current Qualified Lawyers Transfer Scheme (QLTS) and the Legal Practice Course (LPC) as the qualification route for entry into the legal profession in England and Wales. It has been designed to provide a standardized and consistent assessment for individuals wishing to become solicitors.

With the implementation of the SQE, aspiring solicitors will need to pass two stages of examinations:

Stage 1: Functioning Legal Knowledge

The first stage of the SQE, known as Functioning Legal Knowledge, measures a candidate’s understanding of core legal principles. This stage consists of multiple-choice questions (MCQs) and will cover subjects such as contract law, criminal law, property law, and more.

Preparing for the Functioning Legal Knowledge stage requires a comprehensive study plan. To enhance your preparation, be sure to check out our article on MCQ Strategies for SQE Property Practice: Tips for Exam Success, which provides valuable insights and tips for success in the MCQ-based assessment format.

Stage 2: Practical Legal Skills

The second stage of the SQE, known as Practical Legal Skills, focuses on assessing a candidate’s practical legal abilities. This stage includes both written and oral examinations, testing skills such as legal research, interviewing clients, and case analysis.

Aspiring solicitors should aim to develop a well-rounded understanding of the practical aspects of law. To deepen your knowledge in specific areas, we recommend exploring our related articles:

Why was the SQE introduced?

The introduction of the SQE aims to bring about a more flexible, accessible, and affordable route to qualification as a solicitor. By standardizing the assessment process, the SQE ensures that all aspiring solicitors meet the same high standards.

Moreover, the SQE offers an alternative to the traditional LPC route, providing aspiring solicitors with the opportunity to gain practical experience alongside their studies. With the SQE, you can start working and earning while you qualify.

Preparing for the SQE

As with any examination, thorough preparation is key to success. To fully prepare for the SQE, consider the following steps:

  1. Start Early: Begin your preparation well in advance to allow yourself ample time to cover the required material.
  2. Create a Study Plan: Develop a comprehensive study plan, breaking down the topics into manageable chunks.
  3. Utilize Resources: Make use of online resources, textbooks, and mock exams to reinforce your understanding and test your knowledge.
  4. Seek Professional Guidance: Consider enrolling in a reputable SQE training program or seeking guidance from experienced solicitors to gain valuable insights and advice.

Remember, personalized guidance and support can make a significant difference in your preparation and overall success in the SQE. So don’t hesitate to explore training options that suit your needs and learning style.


The Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE) is a transformative assessment that simplifies the qualification route for aspiring solicitors. By understanding the two stages of the SQE and following a strategic preparation plan, you’ll be well-equipped to excel in this new examination format.

For further insights on specific topics relevant to your SQE preparation, we recommend reading our related articles:

With the right mindset, determination, and preparation, the SQE can be a stepping stone to a successful career as a solicitor. So embrace this new challenge and embark on your journey towards becoming a qualified legal professional.






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