13 March 2012

Discussion paper developed from Literature Review

A major step will be taken in the delivery of the research-based segment of the Legal Education & Training Review (LETR) now that the a key discussion paper and headline findings from the draft Literature Review have been revealed.

The LETR is a joint project involving the SRA, the Bar Standards Board (BSB) and ILEX Professional Standards (IPS). It began in May and aims to ensure England and Wales has a legal education and training system fit for the regulatory objectives of the Legal Services Act 2007.

The draft Literature Review involves reviewing legal educational literature published in the last 40 years, focusing on key topics for investigation laid down at the start of the review. This has led to the research team publishing its first major Discussion Paper "Call for Evidence: Key issues", on which it wants stakeholders to comment.

Tracey Varnava, SRA Education Research Managersaid: "This has been an important part of the review process because there's no point re-inventing the wheel - if thorough research has already been carried out on the subject, it would be remiss of us not to consider it."

Views, analysis and evidence from stakeholders are now invited on:

  • The extent to which the overarching legal education and training structure is 'fit for purpose'
  • Any weaknesses that exist in respect of the existing stages and the appetite for radical change
  • The impact of the Legal Services Act on the regulation of legal education and training of the Legal Services Act and the move to outcomes focused regulation


Responses are invited to letrbox@letr.org.uk by 10 May 2012.

The review is being led by Professor Julian Webb from the University of Warwick and also involves Professor Paul Maharg, University of Northumbria, Dr Jane Ching, Nottingham Trent University and Professor Avrom Sherr, Institute of Advanced Legal Studies. Work will continue on the Literature Review throughout this year and will take account of literature published up to October 2012

The next major step in delivering the research-based part of the review is an International Symposium taking place in July at The Lowry Hotel in Manchester. The conference is dedicated to some of the key themes emerging from the research and is expected to bring even more views to the table. Discussion Paper II will also be published in July together with headline findings from the contextual analysis stage of the research.

For further information on the LETR and access to all the available documents, including the draft Literature Review and its headline findings, the Discussion Paper and the Briefing Paper, visit www.letr.org.uk. A final paper will be delivered in December.