Bar Council Training Scheme for Chinese lawyers


2019 Application process now CLOSED

The Bar Council Training Scheme (BCTS) offers a unique opportunity to Chinese lawyers to experience practice at the English commercial Bar. The scheme includes a pre-training course in Beijing provided by the China International Economic and Trade Arbitration Commission (CIETAC), a short bespoke academic programme provided by BPP University, a series of legal seminars and vocational training sessions and, for a large part of the programme, a placement in barristers' chambers. There will also be visits to key legal institutions including courts, and a social and networking programme.

The CIETAC pre-training course will take place from 14 - 18 January 2019  in Beijing. It will include lectures on international commercial arbitration, investment arbitration and evidentiary rules delivered by Chinese and UK legal experts and academics. All applicants will be offered the opportunity to attend the pre-training course. Some candidates will be invited to an interview with a barrister during the course.   

The 7-week London-leg programme will take place from 3 June to 19 July 2019. Between 10 to 15 lawyers will be invited to participate in the London-leg. 

How to apply

Please read the application guidance document before starting your application to ensure you meet the necessary criteria.

Please email as one scanned or electronic version of the following documents to by Tuesday 1 January 2019.

  1. Completed and signed application form

  2. Reference from senior partner in law firm, signed and dated (in English and Chinese)

  3. Practising certificate/lawyers licence

  4. English language test certificate (IELTS)

  5. Curriculum Vitae (CV)

  6. Main page of passport

If you have any queries relating to the programme, please email Jessica Crofts Lawrence at or on +44 (0) 207 611 1357.

The Bar Council will also be running the first bespoke International Dispute Resolution training for Senior Chinese lawyers from 3 - 7 June 2019. Please click here for more information. 


The Bar Council China Training Scheme (BCTS) is the successor to the Lord Chancellor's Training Scheme (LCTS), but updated to take account of the extraordinary economic progress made in China since 1989 and the impressive development of the Chinese legal profession. The BCTS builds on the success of the LCTS, which came to an end in April 2011.The original Training Scheme was established by the Bar Council and the Law Society in partnership with the School of Oriental and African Studies and the British Council. The programme was funded by the UK Government and consisted of one full year of legal training, including an academic programme at SOAS University of London, vocational training in law firms and barristers' chambers as well as visits to European institutions and some time in Hong Kong. 

In 2015, the Training Scheme celebrated its 25th Anniversary. Many of the Chinese alumni attended the event and produced articles on their time in on the programme. To read their stories, please click here

 BCTS 25th