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Law Students face SQE2 exam delays

Hundreds of students will have their qualification as solicitors delayed following the regulator’s quiet announcement that they will not be able to take both parts of the professional exam this year. 

The SRA (Solicitors Regulation Authority) have revealed that students who take the first part of the Solicitors Qualification Examination, (SQE1) in July, will not have results in time for successful candidates to sit the second part, SQE2, in October as planned. 

The setback is the latest problem to hit the SRA’s new qualifying regime, after the results of the first exams revealed that the pass rates were significantly higher for white students (66%), compared with black (39%) and Asian (43%) candidates.

Responding to questions asked in a recent SRA webinar, Zoe Robinson, director of qualifications at Kaplan, which assesses the exams, said 'it will not be possible for the SQE1 in July, for candidates to move onto the SEQ2 in October’ because of the length of time that it will take to mark the first exams.

She said it has always been the 'aim to set a timetable which will permit candidates to move through the assessments and the overall qualification quickly’. One student said the delay caused her to lose a job offer and has since decided to qualify in Australia because she cannot afford to wait until September 2023. 'Hundreds of other students have been affected – and a lot don’t have the money to be able to fund themselves while they wait for the SRA to sort out its processes.’

Lucie Allen, Barbri’s managing director, said the change was 'disappointing' for students wanting to sit the SQE2 in October, however she stated that she understood the SRA’s need to analyse the July results. 

A spokesperson for the SRA said: 'Our priority remains, as always, to ensure complete accuracy in candidate results.'



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