Structure of GDLP program

GDLP Straight to the top

Entry requirements

You must have completed an Australian Bachelor of Laws or Juris Doctor or international equivalent. The Diploma in Law, awarded by the Legal Profession Admission Board is also accepted for admission to this program. If you are an international applicant, have non-Australian legal qualifications or are seeking to start your PLT early, there are specific instructions.

Do you wish to commence your GDLP/MLP prior to completing your LLB or JD?  Please note, the Practical Legal Training Early Start Rule has recently changed.

Becoming a Practitioner (BAP)
(4 day, face to face intensive)
Choose your BAP here
A: 12 week Professional Practice Core (PPC). Choose your PPC here.
B: 2-4 Electives: Depending on the amount of LPE you have. Choose from the 9 available electives here.

Ready For Practice (RFP)   
(3 weeks mentored online, all your learning collated together, ready for work)
Choose your RFP here.

Complete your LEGAL PRACTICE EXPERIENCE (LPE - aka placement)

either before or during your GDLP.


Element 1: Becoming a Practitioner


Becoming a Practitioner (BAP) is an introduction to lawyers’ skills and is preparation for the rest of the program. The consecutive four day course is compulsory and taught by practising lawyers and barristers in locations around Australia.

The education approach is one of ‘learning by doing’ and the practical sessions cover:

  • interviewing and advising
  • client communications
  • problem solving and teamwork
  • dispute resolution and negotiation
  • legal writing
  • legal analysis
  • advocacy

Element 2: Professional Practice Core


The Professional Practice Core (PPC) is a 12 week compulsory course which is delivered wholly online. The PPC is offered tree times each year and covers:

  • Professionalism in Practice
  • Ethics and Professional Responsibility
  • Trust Accounting
  • Civil Litigation Practice
  • Property Practice
  • Commercial Practice

The course takes a practical approach to learning and you will work in a ‘virtual’ law firm with a small group of students (typically four students). Students work online in ‘virtual office spaces’ and undertake simulated exercises in areas such as commercial, property and civil litigation.

You will manage all aspects of the virtual law firm, including trust accounting, interacting with partners and associates, and working with clients. You will receive valuable feedback from our expert team of Practitioner Teachers. The feedback is designed to assist you to develop a comprehensive understanding of what is expected of a graduate lawyer.


Element 3: Electives


There are nine Admission to Practice electives in total and the number you need to complete depends on the length of your placement, as shown in the table below, in Element 4. Electives are studied online, except for the Criminal Practice elective which is a face-to-face intensive course.

You may choose to do your electives before, during or after your Profesional Practice Core (PPC).

You have the option of continuing to study towards the Master of Legal Practice. This requires only an additional four courses. There are over 80 masters courses to choose from, please see our Law course finder or the PDF icon 2017 Masters Course Timetable (132.05 KB) for course scheduling.

* Please note: if you wish to do LEGW8124 Government Law you must do at least two other LEGW electives.


Element 4: Legal Practice Experience (LPE)


The Legal Practice Experience (LPE) is a placement in the legal profession under the supervision of a lawyer with at least three years of legal experience. You have the option of completing a 20, 50 or 80 day placement in an approved legal workplace. Overseas placements can be approved, subject to some conditions. 

Please refer to the LPE Guidelines 2017 for more information on undetaking your LPE.  Choose the length of your Legal Practice Experience placement, either 20, 50 or 80 days, and the table below indicates the number of mandatory electives you will need to complete.

While it is your responsibility to find a placement, ANU School of Legal Practice can assist. We also regularly advertise legal placement opportunities for students on the Legal Careers and Placements page.

Placement length

Mandatory number of electives

20 days

4 elective courses

50 days

3 elective courses

80 days

2 elective courses

Legal Aid Clinic (LAC) Program

The LAC program takes place at the ACT Legal Aid Office where you can undertake a seven day placement in Canberra which counts for 10 days of placement. Please refer to the PDF icon LAC Program Booklet (143.78 KB) You can read what past students thought of the program in the PDF icon LAC program evaluation_2016 (62.44 KB)

Regional, Rural and Remote (RRR) placement

There is a shortage of lawyers in regional, rural and remote (“RRR”) areas of Australia. We encourage students to seek GDLP legal practice experience in RRR areas.

ANU School of Legal Practice is the first and only Practical Legal Training program in Australia to financially assist and mentor students undertaking RRR PLT placement.

First, students enquire directly with legal organisations or practices in RRR locations to arrange a placement. Next, submit the RRR Financial Assistance Application Form for help with costs like travel and accommodation.

In 2017 we celebrated the start of our new course, Law, Lawyers and Justice: Regional, Rural, Remote in the Master of Legal Practice (MLP) program. Students in the ANU Juris Doctor (On-Campus), Juris Doctor (Online) and LLM program can also take the course.

Kimberley Community Legal Services

We provide opportunities for students to find placements at the Kimberley Community Legal Services (KCLS) which are supported by funding from the RRR scholarships.

Beyond Law - exclusive listing

We have an arrangement with Beyond Law to provide a minimum of 5 placement opportunities each month exclusive to ANU School of Legal Practice students. You just need to register with your ANU email address in order to see the exclusively listed placements.


Element 5: Ready For Practice


Ready for Practice is a three week capstone experience which enables you to draw together your learning in the GDLP. You will receive supportive coaching in preparation for a smooth transition to practice. 


Updated:  10 August 2015/Responsible Officer:  Director, GDLP/Page Contact:  Program Coordinator, GDLP