17 May 2020

ICCA staff are happy to deal with any queries you may have relating to their Bar Course or CPD projects. Do email us at

Bar Course

Bar Course Aptitude Test (BCAT)
The BSB has announced that those students intending to start their Bar training on one of the new authorised pathways starting in September (including the ICCA Bar Course) will be able to sit the BCAT under remote proctored conditions. Some students have already taken the BCAT, but registrations were suspended when the test centres closed under lockdown.

The BSB expects that the BCAT will reopen for registrations before the start of June. The BCAT can then be taken via Pearson VUE’s OnVUE online proctoring platform, or at a Pearson VUE test centre where these are available. The BCAT remains an entry requirement for the vocational component of Bar training.

Please visit the BSB’s website for further details.

The ICCA’s Dean, Head of Programmes and Bar Course Leader will be hosting a Q&A session where we will answer all your questions about Bar training and the ICCA Bar Course. Send us your questions via Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn or via and we will collate all the questions and start to release answers from Monday 25 May, every day for two weeks.

If your question is urgent, contact

In other news, our first students will soon be joining staff and Governors for a special virtual event – more details to follow!


A specially selected cadre of junior practitioners is about to start work on the testing phase of the ICCA Bar Course – Part One. We are thrilled to be able to harness their expertise and to offer them paid work during these unprecedented times.

Online pupil advocacy for second-six pupils continues to be offered every afternoon at 4:30. You can book a session via our Events page. Feedback from these sessions continues to be extremely positive. We are about to release a set of family law instructions and extend the opportunity to others to witness handling. We are indebted to Chris Melton QC and Michelle Heeley QC and all the Circuiteers and Judges who are offering their time during these unprecedented times. It is very humbling to know that there us so much goodwill and collegiality among the profession to support the junior Bar.

We have published our Principles for Remote Advocacy which are currently being adopted around the globe as good practice. We have received wide praise and are delighted they are being used so regularly.


We hope that you are all taking care of yourselves and we continue to monitor the impact Covid-19 may have on our students and prospective students.

Mental Health Awareness Week is 18-24 May – please do access the resources available to you. Please see also the new initiative launched by the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge.

Rest assured that we are working on our bespoke resources to help our student manage anxiety, develop resilience and survive and thrive at the Bar. We are thrilled to be consulting with Rachel Spearing, who is the co-founder and former chair of the Bar Wellbeing Initiative, which aims to address and support the challenges facing the legal profession, and Jacqueline Beeley, Barrister, Legal academic and Psychologist.

We wish you all good health and urge you to keep up to date with the Government’s advice.

Stay alert

We can all help control the virus if we all stay alert. This means you must:

  • stay at home as much as possible
  • work from home if you can
  • limit contact with other people
  • keep your distance if you go out (2 metres apart where possible)
  • wash your hands regularly
  • Do not leave home if you or anyone in your household has symptoms

Follow us on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and Instagram for regular updates.

Click here for helpful resources for students to tackle mental health and wellbeing issues during the Covid-19 outbreak.