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Applications for the 24/25 Academy are now closed.

The Academy is our sole programme and will see 100 BTB Candidates gain access to multiple programmes and training opportunities over the course of the academic year after being selected through a single application process. The hope is that by focusing our resources on a smaller group of candidates, we can maximise our impact.

Applications for Academy 24/25 are now closed, but to be notified of any Academy news, please sign up here.

Key Objectives

The BTB Academy has been created to support 100 high-quality BTB candidates in obtaining the skills, tangible experience and mindset needed to secure pupillage and succeed at the Bar.

Our five key objectives are:

  1. To improve the content of our candidates' pupillage applications.
  2. To improve the quality of our candidates' written pupillage applications.
  3. To improve the quality of each candidates' pupillage interview technique.
  4. To equip our candidates with the mindset and tools required to succeed within the profession.
  5. To equip our candidates with the tools to champion diversity and inclusion within the profession and throughout their career.

The Academy will achieve our objectives in four ways:

  1. Providing mandatory training, seminars and workshops.
  2. Shortlisting candidates for one or more of our paid internship programmes.
  3. Candidates will be assigned a mentor to support them throughout the academic year.
  4. Candidates will have access to our consultancy panel. This includes a pool of BTB volunteers who have agreed to give mock interviews and provide lectures on pupillage applications and life at the Bar.

Academy members will have access to:


Every candidate will be placed with a practising barrister in their area of interest for one-on-one mentoring over the course of the Academy year. Each mentor will take their mentee through the Academy mentorship programme and provide guidance, feedback, and support through the candidate's Academy journey.

Interview advocacy training

Our candidates will undergo a programme focused on improving answers to specific advocacy questions in preparation for pupillage interviews. Candidates will be placed with chambers in their intended practice area and received tailored tips for improvement which target advocacy skills and leave candidates more prepared for pupillage application season.

Personal Development Workshops

Candidates will be split into "pods" and engage in 4 sessions with a life coach over the course of the academic year. The sessions will focus on imposter/trespasser syndrome, identity, owning your story and confidence. This part of the programme is designed to help overcome any fears non-traditional candidates may have about choosing the bar as their career field.


Candidates will attend a two-part Lecture series given by Elaine Banton which focuses on issues those from under-represented groups face at the bar. This series is designed to prompt meaningful discussion around these issues and help candidates develop the skills they need to become BTB ambassadors at the bar.

Mini Pupillage Programme

All candidates are assigned at least one mini-pupillage in their area of interest through the Academy programme, to be undertaken before the pupillage window. Those candidates not successful in gaining a place on one of our internship schemes will also have the opportunity to be placed for a second mini-pupillage which will take place after the close of the pupillage window.

Paid Internship Programme

Our candidates will be shortlisted for one or more of the following programmes - UK Supreme Court paid internship, Court of Appeal/High Court paid internship, The Law Commission paid internship, The Government Legal Department paid internship and the Advocate summer paid internship.

Online Advocacy Training

Every candidate will have access to our wonderful online advocacy course designed by Bibi Badejo. This course will help candidates improve their general advocacy and hone the skills needed to succeed at the bar. At the finish of this course, candidates will be invited to a live online event and will have the opportunity to practise their skills with actors.

Consultancy Panel

All candidates will have access to the consultancy panel: this panel consists of practising barristers who volunteer with BTB and are happy to provide mock interview practice, CV review, and specific advocacy exercise practice among others.

Benefits of The Academy

Investing more resources in a fewer number of candidates means bigger and better results.

Stakeholders will receive the highest quality candidates for their programmes as the candidates will be selected from a small pool of 100 candidates who have already undergone a highly competitive selection process.

Candidates only complete one application at the beginning of the academic year, reducing application fatigue and allowing them to invest more time into a singular application.

The year-long programme demands a high level of commitment, ensuring only candidates who are serious about a career at the Bar are eligible.

This creates a group of candidates from underrepresented backgrounds who will foster a community throughout the academic year and beyond.

Information for applicants

  • The Academy is a taught programme, attendance is expected at all Academy events, and completion of all Academy work is compulsory. A full schedule will be given to successful applicants in September, and it is the candidate's responsibility to ensure they are present throughout the programme.

  • Applicants may only make one application within each Academy year but, if unsuccessful, may apply again in the next cycle. The application process will consist of three written questions, one video presentation, and two unseen timed video questions.

  • Candidates successful in gaining a place on one of our internship schemes may need to pass security clearance. To enable this, all candidates must be able to supply photo ID, proof of address, and a professional attire headshot.

  • Once candidates complete the Academy programme, they will be recognised as BTB Academy graduates. This means that chambers can verify their completion of the programme with us, and also enables access to our new BTB Alumni network which gives continues support, advice, and opportunities.

"From day one, the Bridging the Bar team has asked itself: what is the best way to increase the chances of our candidates securing pupillage, whilst also preparing them for professional life at the Bar? The BTB Academy is the answer." - Aaron Mayers, Vice-Chairperson.

Applicant guide 23/24

See our Applicant guide...

for more detailed programme information and application guidance.

Click here to view