Insights into Law

All of the leading law firms offer some sort of work placement in your first year. You should look to secure at least one of these, either in the spring or summer.

Be aware that many law firms employ critical thinking tests as part of their recruitment process. A popular one is the Watson Glaser. Practice these tests HERE

Law - Solicitors: A - C

  • Addleshaw Goddard Open Day. One day for first year students. They also offer Easter and summer placements in London, Leeds & Manchester for 1 week. They do not stipulate whether these need to be penultimate year students.
  • Allen & Overy First. A&O First is a work experience programme and support network designed exclusively for first-year students in the UK. With work experience, exclusive access to webinars, an online forum and a trainee buddy. 
  • Allen & Overy Business Challenge Think! This is a competition, which runs through October and November on campus aimed at any undergraduate from any year reading any subject. You need a team of 4-6. The game is for 40 students in total and encourages you to think like a commercial lawyer. Places are allocated on a first come first served basis and the challenge lasts 90 minutes.
  • Allen & Overy Open Days. There are 2 open days run in the summer aimed at first year undergraduates. The day's programme includes talks and workshops, which provide details about practice areas and clients, their training contract, and the skills you will need to develop to become a successful commercial lawyer.  You will also spend part of the day work shadowing a trainee in one of the departments, allowing you to see what the role really entails. A number of other open days run throughout the year for any student.
  • Ashurst. Ashurst Ahead programme offers  a blend of work experience, mentoring support and training. If you win a place on the programme will also be the first to be considered for campus ambassador positions and have priority early consideration for vacation scheme places.
  • Berwin Leighton Paisner Insight Programme. During the scheme, students will be assigned a trainee buddy. You will shadow the trainee in a department and be given typical 'trainee tasks' so you can see what a trainee would do day-to-day. There are also a series of talks and workshops.
  • Berwin Leighton Paisner Open Day. 1 day aimed at first year law students or second year non-law students. Meet solicitors, attend workshops and presentations and gain an insight into the firm.
  • Brethertons. 2 weeks in the summer. You will get involved in case studies, projects and shadowing. They have offices in Banbury, Bristol, London and Rugby. 
  • Clifford Chance SPARK Scheme. A unique opportunity for exceptional first year students to gain an insider's view into what a career in law can look like.  During the five-day paid scheme, you'll experience an intensive schedule of classroom-based activity, a day spent shadowing our lawyers in a practice area, and a trip to one of our international offices so you can see the Global Network in practice. It'll be fast-paced, dynamic and packed full of exciting opportunities.
  • Clifford Chance open days. They offer a number of open days. Learn more about Clifford Chance assessment process and online tests HERE
  • Clyde & Co. Offers the Bright Futures Progarmme, which involves 1 week sitting in one of their core departments where you will be closely supervised by one of their lawyers. You will be given a range of exciting tasks to help you understand what life as a trainee would be like.
  • CMS Cameron Mckenna First Steps. Run throughout the year and open to first year law students or 2nd year non law students. They involve a tour of the offices, skills sessions, networking with associates and trainees, case study seminar, team building session and coaching on graduate recruitment.  

Law - Solicitors: D - H

  • DLA Piper Insight Day. An opportunity for you to gain an insight into what life is really like as a commercial lawyer.  Meet trainees, associates, partners and graduate recruitment. You will find out about different areas of law, learn how to develop commercial awareness and be given the secrets to making a successful application. They run 4 days in Birmingham, London, Manchester and Leeds.
  • DWF - offer a number of open dats across their offices 
  • Eversheds Sutherlands. A series of office Insight events which give an overview of the work they do. 
  • Freshfields commercial awareness workshop. You’ll spend a day in othe London-based office developing your business understanding ahead of applying for a vacation scheme.
  • Freshfields First Year Sping Programme. The First-Year Focus Programme is open to first-year undergraduate students. You will see what life is like inside a commercial law firm and gain valuable skills training to prepare you for future vacation scheme and training contract application forms and interviews.
  • Gibson Dunn Insight Day. Offer an Insight Scheme, in London, for those researching a career in law. The day consists of seminars, workshops and information sessions to help students understand the life of a commercial solicitor. Also an opportunity to quiz current trainees and meet partners and other solicitors. 
  • Herbert Smith Freehills Open Days
  • Herbert Smith Freehills Vacation Schemes. Our vacation schemes sit you with a partner or associate, as you take on real work for real clients. Alongside workshops and presentations, you’ll explore our practice areas, and join a team on a pro bono project. You’ll also network with other vacation scheme students, partners, associates and trainees. At the end of your scheme, you’re guaranteed an interview for a training contract. 
  • Hogan Lovell Easter Vacation Scheme. Aimed at first year students. This is a week long event, introducing you to all aspects of the firm. The week will involve workshops, case studies and the opportunity to work-shadow some of our trainee solicitors.
  • Hogan Lovell Open Days. They run 2 one-day events each year.
  • Hogan Lovell Campus Ambassadors. Your role will cover everything from helping to plan and publicise events to providing insights, ideas and student feedback to their graduate recruitment team. In return, you will have an opportunity to attend the Hogan Lovell’s vacation scheme. You will also be paid £600.


Law - Solicitors: L - T

  • Osbourne Clarke - 2 day insight scheme in London or Bristol. 
  • Linklaters Pathfinder. 2-day insight programme aimed at first year undergraduates studying law. On your first day you will get to attend a range of workshops to develop your team-working and networking skills, plus your commercial thinking. The second day is centred around micro-shadowing sessions, where you will sit with a trainee and observe their work and life.
  • Mayer Brown Open Days. Held at the beginning of January and open to all undergraduates and graduates from any degree discipline.  During the day, you will hear presentations from partners, enjoy a networking lunch and participate in a commercial awareness session as well as learning key hints and tips on how to navigate your way through the trainee solicitor recruitment process. 
  • Norton Rose Fulbright First Step. A week in July in one of their practice areas understanding their culture and how they work. 
  • Norton Rose Fulbright Open Day. Normally held in April and July.
  • Norton Rose University Manager. Apply as a first year. As a university manager you will organise and promote events, provide Norton Rose with insight into activities at your university and liaise closely with their graduate recruitment team. In return, you will be paid £500 and have an opportunity to gain experience on one of the summer vacation schemes. 
  • Slaughter & May First Year Open Day. Usually held in April.
  • Stephenson Harwood Open Days. Held in January, February or April.
  • Targetjobs Events: runs  a  2-day event in London in June aimed at ethnic minorities first year law students or second year of a non-law degree. You get a unique insight into the sponsor firms and participate in a series of workshops and networking sessions.
  • Thomson Snell & Passmore. They offer 2 one week placements in Easter at the Tunbridge Wells office and 6 two week work placments there during the summer and 2 one week placments in the summer in their London office
Student Ladder