BA in Jurisprudence with Senior Status
BA Senior Status
Please note the following deadlines: 20 October 2017 to sit LNAT tests; 15 October 2017 for UCAS applications.
The BA in Jurisprudence with Senior Status is a shortened version of our regular law degree available only to those who already have at least one other university degree. The grant of Senior Status is in the discretion of the admitting college. The effect is that the student is exempt from the first public examinations, and joins the BA course after this point.
The first public examinations in law, unlike those in many other subjects, are taken two-thirds of the way through the first year. This means that law undergraduates start studying subjects for their final public examinations in the final term of their first year. A Senior Status BA student therefore has one term fewer than other BA students to cover the full body of work for his or her final public examinations. He or she also misses the first summer vacation, which is used by undergraduates to consolidate their work. Experience has shown that only postgraduate students of a very high academic calibre can cope with this successfully.
Being able to absorb so much material in such a short period of time is an important skill that will be developed very quickly at Oxford. The chance to discuss and debate topics with some of the brightest minds in the world in our tutorials is unparalleled.
As a result, colleges that consider accepting postgraduate applicants with Senior Status for Oxford’s BA in law generally apply stricter academic criteria to those applicants than they do to undergraduate applicants who wish to study for the same programmes over their full durations. Successful Senior Status applicants will normally be predicted to achieve or have achieved a first class degree or equivalent, or, in the case of mature applicants, strong and convincing evidence of the applicant’s achievements and future promise at an equivalent level.
In addition, some colleges consider Senior Status applicants who are able to join the programme one term early (in April/May). This has the effect of enabling such students to study for their final public examinations at the same pace as undergraduates (beginning with the final term of the first year of the regular BA programme), so the criteria for such applicants may not be so strict.
Senior Status students who wish their BA to be a ‘qualifying law degree’ (that is, a qualification that exempts them from the academic stage of training for barristers and solicitors in England and Wales, and proceed straight from the degree to their further professional training) need to take criminal law and constitutional law as their two ‘optional’ courses in the final year. The other students will have studied these subjects for the first public examination and hence will have a free choice of options at this point.
The Senior Status BA is a tough programme with little room for manoeuvre and only a limited number of colleges will admit students to it. With all this in mind, postgraduate applicants for Oxford’s BA programmes should consider very carefully whether they wish to apply for Senior Status or rather join the regular undergraduate programme. Please note that, normally, Senior Status is available only for the regular BA in Law, not for the BA in Law with Law Studies in Europe. Postgraduate applicants for the latter degree will normally be expected to study it over the full four years.
The course follows the standard three-year BA in most respects.