Pathways to Law

Pathways to Law is an exciting two-year programme for local students giving you the chance to experience studying law at the University of Bristol.

If you're interested in a career in law, Pathways to Law gives you the opportunity to take lectures and seminars from the University of Bristol's internationally recognised law academics.

Residential trip

Pathways students attend a three-night visit at the University of Warwick in July of Year 12. This gives you an experience of university life and the chance to meet students from the other Pathways universities.

Work placement at a law firm

You will also have the opportunity to undertake a three- to five-day placement with a law firm during school holidays. You will learn about the structure and functions of a law firm and meet a variety of people from senior partners to trainees.

The placement offers a unique opportunity to really experience what it's like to work at a law firm, while making valuable connections for the future.

Law student e-mentoring scheme

The e-mentoring programme is one of the most important elements of Pathways to Law. We will match you with a University of Bristol law student who you can contact via email with any questions. You can talk to them about what it is like to study law at university and find about more about careers in law and university life in general.

E-mentoring works well alongside the advice and guidance sessions on applying to university that we run as part of the Pathways to Law programme.

Apply to Pathways to Law

Applications for Pathways to Law are now closed. Please send any enquiries about the programme to

Students applying to our Pathways to Law programme must meet the following criteria:

  • attend, and have always attended, a state-funded, non-fee-paying school/college;
  • be in Year 12 at the start of the programme;
  • live within a reasonable commuting distance of the university to which they are applying.

In addition, we prefer applications from students who:

  • have achieved grades 9-6 at GCSE in at least 5 subjects (with a minimum of 2 grades at 9-7)
  • would be the first generation in their family to attend university;
  • have been in receipt of Free School Meals whilst at secondary school;
  • have attended schools with a lower than average progression to higher education, or a higher than average proportion of students who qualify for Free School Meals;
  • have parent(s)/guardian(s) who qualify for means-tested benefits;
  • have been looked after or in care.

You will need permission from your school or college to attend Pathways to Law sessions during term time and we will ask for contact information on your application form.

If you have any questions about the entry requirements or how to apply, please contact us at


If you successfully complete the Pathways to Law programme at Bristol and firmly accept your offer to study at the University, you may be eligible for the Access to Bristol bursary, which consists of:

  • A full tuition fee waiver for your first year of study;
  • A maintenance bursary of £3,855 for each year of your course.

To be considered for the bursary you need to have a household income of £25,000 or below and be resident in England. No bursary is paid in any year where you are entitled to NHS funding as part of your course.

The Access to Bristol bursary and Guaranteed Offer reflect our commitment to attracting the very best students to the University of Bristol and demonstrates how highly we regard those students who complete the Pathways to Law scheme.

Guaranteed offer at contextual level

Successful completion of the Pathways to Law at Bristol scheme will guarantee you an offer from the University of Bristol provided that you meet the full entry requirements of the course you apply for.

You will be eligible for a contextual offer for all undergraduate courses, which is usually two grades lower than the typical offer. If the course holds interviews or auditions as part of the selection process you will be guaranteed an interview or audition.

Access to Bristol brochure 2018/19

Download the 2018/19 Access to Bristol brochure (PDF, 2,913kB) for more information.

Pathways to Law was set up by The Sutton Trust and The Legal Education Foundation with support from major law firms to inspire and support academically able students from non-privileged backgrounds interested in a career in law. 

Edit this page