SQE Qualification


The Solicitor’s Qualifying Examination (SQE) route is your route to becoming a Solicitor. To follow this route you will need:

  1. A degree in any subject or equivalent level 6 qualification.
  2. To pass both stages of SQE assessment.
  3. To complete 2 years’ full time qualifying work experience.
  4. To pass the Solicitors Regulation Authority character and suitability requirements.

About the SRA

The Solicitors Regulation Authority is the regulator for solicitors and law firms in England and Wales. They protect the public by ensuring solicitors meet high standards and acting when risks are identified.

From single solicitor practices to large firms with a global presence, solicitors follow the same principles and code of conduct. The SRA admits solicitors to the profession and publishes a list of organisations who offer SQE preparation courses for those who wish to train to become solicitors.

The SRA offers information and guidance on the Solicitor’s Qualifying Exam.

Link to SRA

About SQE

The Solicitors Qualifying Exam is a route to qualify as a Solicitor. To follow this route, you need to

  • have a degree in any subject or equivalent level 6 qualification
  • pass both stages of the SQE assessment
  • two years’ full-time (or equivalent) qualifying work experience
  • pass our character and suitability requirements.

If you are another kind of lawyer such as a CILEX Lawyer, Barrister or lawyer from another jurisdiction, you may not need to complete the qualifying work experience. You may also be eligible for an exemption from SQE 2 but this is decided on a case by case basis and you should consult the SRA about your particular circumstances.

The exam is in 2 parts SQE 1 and SQE 2. SQE 1 is about functioning legal knowledge (FLK) and is split into 2 parts.


FLK 1 covers

  • Business Law and Practice
  • Dispute Resolution
  • Contract
  • Tort
  • Legal System of England and Wales
  • Constitutional and Administrative Law and EU Law and Legal Services

FLK 2 covers

  • Property Practice
  • Wills and the Administration of Estates
  • Solicitors Accounts
  • Land Law
  • Trusts
  • Criminal Law and Practice

You must pass both to be successful.


SQE 2 is a practical legal assessment, taken over 5 days and covers the skills of

  • Client interview and attendance note/legal analysis
  • Advocacy
  • Case and matter analysis
  • Legal research
  • Legal writing
  • Legal drafting

Within the subject areas of

  • Criminal Litigation
  • Dispute Resolution
  • Property Practice
  • Wills and Intestacy, Probate Administration and Practice
  • Business organisations rules and procedures

Although it’s not compulsory to take a preparation course before sitting SQE assessments, there’s lots to learn or refresh your knowledge on and lots of study, revision and exam technique to pick up and practise.

When you have completed the SQE assessments and the qualifying work experience, you may apply to be admitted to the Solicitors Register/ the Roll.

SQE Preparation Courses

A course which prepares you to take the Solicitors Qualifying Examination assessments will be either self-study or guided self-study. You’ll be responsible for your own learning and administering your learning and practice journey. A preparation course is not compulsory, you can just enter yourself for the assessments if you are qualified. It’s a good idea to have specialist tutors to talk to though and to have some example exam questions and mock exams to practise for the exams.

Preparation courses are available from a number of learning providers, and you can find us listed on the Solicitors Regulation Authority website for our courses.

The courses offered vary in the kind and amount of support and guidance offered, the learning materials you have access to and the amount of time you can expect to work with tutors, mentors or coaches, if at all. Look carefully for the courses that will meet your needs and encourage you to work in a way that leads to exam success and demonstrable practice skills.

If you are shopping around for the right learning organisation to work with to take your SQE preparation courses think about:

  • Would you like learning materials only with no person-to-person support?
  • If you would like support and guidance, what kind? Subject specialist tuition, study skills guidance, revision and exam preparation advice, practice demonstrations?
  • How have you learned best in the past? What works for you?
  • Will you need to try something new to give you a boost and a good preparation for the assessment?
  • Are live lessons/ workshops important to you?
  • Will you benefit from consistent, close and long-term learning relationships with tutors and other learners?
  • Do you need help and practise to understand how to answer multiple choice questions and to know the typical kinds of questions you may be asked?
  • Do you need some advice on qualifying work employment?

Call or email some of the centres listed on the SRA website and ask them:

  1. What experience do you have in delivering legal learning?
  2. What course materials do you offer?
  3. How can I access course materials and for how long?
  4. Will I be allocated a named, subject specialist tutor for each subject area?
  5. Are tutors experienced in training or practice, or both?
  6. What experience do you have of offering online learning?
  7. How can I engage with tutors? Will they spend time face to face with me?
  8. Will I work one to one with tutors or in groups?
  9. What support and guidance will I get for study skills and revision and exam preparation?
  10. Will I have access to an online law library service?
  11. How much do courses cost (think not just about cost but about value, based on the answers to all your other questions)?
  12. What response time can I expect for emails and phone calls?
  13. Also ask yourself, based on what you read and hear about the learning provider and their responses to your questions, are they knowledgeable and are they kind?

SQE costs and payment

Course SQE 1 for CILEX Graduates SQE 1 for non-law Graduates
Cost £2500 £3000
Duration in weeks 42 52
Start month September Coming soon
Number of specialist workshops 24 36
Subject tutorials 12 18
One to one tutorials 10 12
Contact weeks per subject area 4 5

Costs and payment

There are lots of ways you can pay us

  • Bank transfer
  • Credit or debit card via PayPal
  • PayPal account

You can pay:

  • In full in advance
  • In 12 interest free instalments spread across the 12 months of your subscription
  • Via a loan from our finance partners Lendwise for course fees of £2000 or more. You can find more information and apply here www.lendwise.com/borrow by clicking on get started and then choosing professional qualification under loan type. Terms and conditions apply and the loan agreement is between you and Lendwise, with no involvement from Brightlink. Typical interest rates tend to range between 10 and 12 percent.

We limit our course numbers strictly to ensure that we can give enough support to each learner we work with. If your application is accepted, you can secure your course place with a non-refundable deposit of £250 which will be deducted from the cost of your course overall.

If we are unable to offer you a place we may add you to our waiting list in case a place becomes available due to a withdrawal and we may offer you a place on a future course.
Getting started

You can apply at any time. Use the form below to send us an enquiry form about the course you’d like to study and we’ll be in touch to arrange it with you.

    Studying for SQE with Brightlink

    We are sharing our decades experience working with CILEX learners to offer SQE preparation specifically for CILEX Graduates. We are also working on an SQE preparation programme for non-law Graduates which is coming soon. They include tutor support for study skills, revision and exam preparation, progress, pastoral advice and guidance. They also all include access to Westlaw and online learning materials which include practise questions and mock exams, progress tracking and monitoring. Every course includes subject specialist tuition and real time workshops which are recorded for you to review until the end of the course.

    Tutor contact is via email and video conference, customer service support is available via email and telephone.

    Workshops take place during the early evening and course tutor appointments are arranged at your convenience wherever possible.

    SQE Preparation for CILEX Graduates .

    This course is 42 weeks long and includes access to learning materials and Westlaw, 24 workshops with subject specialist tutors, 12 subject tutorials, whole course support from a course personal tutor. You will have access to practise questions and mock exams as well as the ability to monitor and compare your progress and discuss it with your course tutor.

    You will meet with your fellow learners and your tutors in regular live workshops, which will take place on Tuesday evenings.

    This course is aimed at those who already have CILEX qualifications and it begins in September.

    This course costs £2500. You will pay £250 to secure your place if your application is accepted. You can then pay £225 a month on the 1st of each month for 10 months. We can invoice your employer for your course fees if you would like us to.

    SQE 1 for Non Law Graduates

    This course is 52 weeks long and includes access to learning materials and Westlaw, 36 workshops and 18 subject tutorials with subject specialist tutors, seven weeks’ access to email each subject specialist tutor, whole course support from a course tutor. You will have access to practise questions and mock exams as well as the ability to monitor and compare your progress and discuss it with your course tutor.

    You will meet with your fellow learners and your tutors in regular live workshops.

    This course is aimed at those with a degree which is in a non-law subject and those who have legal qualifications which do not relate to the law of England and Wales, lawyers who are practising in other legal jurisdictions, for example.

    This course costs £3000.

    Getting Started with SQE

    If you have a degree, CILEX qualifications or equivalent level qualification in any subject, you can apply to join a Brightlink SQE preparation course. When you apply, we will look at your application to consider whether your qualifications and needs and our course offer are a good match. We will consider whether we have any available places on the course in which you are interested. We will allocate places on a first come first served basis.

    If you are offered a place on a course we will send you an invoice for your non-refundable deposit to secure that place and send you the welcome information you need to plan and prepare for your study.

    If we are unable to offer you a place, we will let you know and we may offer you a place on a future course and the opportunity to be on a waiting list in case of any last minute withdrawals from the course we cannot fit you onto.

    You will be responsible for any registrations, exemptions and other correspondence with the SRA and for arranging and recording your qualifying work experience.

    If you are a CILEX Graduate you will need to confirm your eligibility with the SRA to ensure you are able to take the course. The SRA treat eligibility on a case by case basis and although the best scenario is to have completed all of your CILEX academic study, qualifying experience and work based learning before cross qualifying, some CILEX learners without the complete qualification have been eligible due to experience.

    If you would like more information please complete our enquiry form

      Click on the links below for other things you might be interested in

      Click here to check out our CILEX CPQ courses
      Click here to check out our CILEX Legacy courses
      Click here to read our Law School FAQ

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      Email - connect@brightlink.org.uk

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