Professional Practice Course (PPC) Hybrid 2022

The Law Society is implementing a strategic plan to increase access to and streamline solicitor training in Ireland. As part of that process, the two-part ‘sandwich course’ known as PPC I and PPC II, has been combined into a more streamlined, standalone unitary course. The PPC Hybrid has also been restructured to take account of these changes.

brochure

This new PPC Hybrid course will commence on 14 December 2022 and will run over three semesters, the provisional dates for which are as follows:

  • Semester 1: 14 December 2022 – June 2023
  • Semester 2: August 2023 – December 2023
  • Semester 3: 2 May 2024 – 30 June 2024 (Advanced Electives)

Similar to its full-time equivalent, the new PPC Hybrid is a fundamentally reworked course with a new syllabus, structure and suite of advanced electives (see below).

Incoming Trainee action items

  1. iPad Selection - all trainees are required to select an iPad by 30 November 2022 at 5pm.

  2. Upload photo for ID card - to gain access to the entire Law Society campus, you must have a valid Law Society student card. All PPC I trainees are required to upload a digital photo by 10 December 2022. Click on the photo under the Edit Profile area and upload an image of less than 4mb.

  3. PPC Hybrid 2022 Timetable - available to download early December 2022

  4. Core and Skills Group Information – available to download 1 week prior to the commencement of the course

Core Curriculum

The core curriculum will run from December 2022 to December 2023 (inclusive of examinations) and will include a continued focus on such skills as negotiations, research, drafting, advocacy, interviewing and advising and presentation skills, together with an enhanced focus on more general skills such as leadership, project management, office and legal technology, and finance skills. Professional responsibility, including enhanced coverage of legal ethics, solicitors’ accounts and rules of professional conduct and law firm life, will also form an integral part of the core curriculum. These are in addition to courses, such as business law, dispute resolution, land law, probate, family law and taxation. Psychology of a lawyer and legal practice Irish will continue to be part of the core curriculum

Structure of the new PPC Hybrid

The new PPC Hybrid maintains an optimised blended learning experience for the entire core curriculum, combining online recorded lectures, ‘live’ online tutorials and skills workshops together with onsite face-to-face tuition. That structure includes:

  • Incremental release of recorded online lectures in play on demand mode. 
  • On-site face-to-face tuition through weekend sessions focusing on skills and small group work for the core written subject.
  • ‘Live’ online tutorials and skills workshops to supplement the onsite small group work.

Advantages of the new PPC Hybrid

The new PPC Hybrid continues to provide an exceptionally flexible learning experience by combining campus and online study. Advantages of the PPC Hybrid include:

  • A potential route into practice that may be more suitable for your lifestyle.
  • The option to continue working while taking engaging online classes.
  • The ability to continue to avail of the full range of academic, networking, and professional development resources of the Society’s Law School.

PPC Hybrid Academic Calendar for the Core Curriculum (January 2023 to December 2023)

Recorded online lectures: Lecture content will be provided in a predominantly online play on demand format. Recorded lecture content will be released on a monthly incremental basis, with lecture content relevant to tutorials/workshops occurring in that month released in advance.

Onsite weekends: There will be approximately ten onsite face-to-face tuition weekends in Blackhall over the duration of the core curriculum. Such weekends will commence at approximately 11.00am on a Friday and conclude on Saturday evening. Onsite weekend dates for 2023 to follow.

Online ‘live’ Saturday sessions: Onsite weekends will be supplemented by approximately ten ‘live’ online Saturday sessions. Such online Saturday sessions will focus on tutorials for the core written subjects, together with the occasional skills workshop and the occasional ‘live’ online lecture. Online Saturday dates for 2023 to follow. (It may be necessary to include some online sessions on Fridays, but this will be confirmed in advance).

In-office training

The two years (24 months) of in-office training continues as a vital and essential vocational component of the overall training to become a solicitor. As with all applicants, PPC Hybrid applicants must have secured a training contract with a training solicitor. The in-office training period commences 14 days after the last exam on the core curriculum. Trainee solicitors will continue to be entitled to potentially benefit from four months’ credit for in-office training occurring prior to commencing the PPC.

PPC Hybrid trainees also have an advantage of being able to potentially engage in employment during the PPC. If that employment is with the training solicitor or any other practising solicitor then trainees may accrue partial credit of up to five-months for in-office training occurring during the PPC. (This is in addition to any credit that might apply for in-office training occurring immediately prior to starting PPC – see above).

Advanced Electives

A programme of advanced electives will be provided (i) by the Law Society, (ii) some will be co-provided and (iii) external advanced electives will also be accredited. The timeline for the Society’s advanced electives will be from May 2024 to June 2024. Trainees are required to complete four advanced electives, but may elect to complete more than this minimum requirement. Hybrid trainees will be provided with the opportunity to complete the advanced elective component of their training with trainees from the full-time offering.  If a trainee takes all advanced electives with the Law Society in May & June 2024, then the expectation is that the trainee will be in full-time education with the Law Society during that period and not available for work.

Fees & Funding

The fee for the core course which runs from December 2022 to December 2023 is €10,500. The fee for advanced electives undertaken with the Law Society is €600 for each course. However, trainees choosing to take multiple advanced electives with the Society will benefit from discounts.

Guidance for training solicitors

  • During the delivery of the core curriculum, we recommend that the trainee work only four days a week. Not every weekend is a Hybrid weekend, but providing the trainee with one day a week off every week will greatly assist their learning process.
  • Ensure time-off for trainees prior to the PPC examinations.
  • Be aware that the PPC is an intensive course with trainees having to engage in learning materials in the evenings and at the weekends. As such during the delivery of the course try and allocate work load accordingly such that the trainees are generally able to leave the office without having to unduly work evenings or at weekends.
  • If the trainee takes all advanced electives with the Law Society in May & June 2024, then then the expectation is that the trainee will be in full-time education with the Law Society during that period and not available for work in the office.

The Law Society is fully committed to providing excellent professional training to our future solicitors. We look forward to welcoming trainee solicitors to the new Hybrid PPC.

Application pack

Download documents to complete your 2022 PPC Hybrid application below.