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How to Add International Qualifications to your Training Contract Application – Whiteboard Wednesday

9th May 2018

by Paul Gascoyne, Graduate Recruitment Manager

Transcript - How to Add International Qualifications to your Training Contract Application

Hello, and welcome to this week's edition of "Whiteboard Wednesday." Today, I'm going to be talking about how to add international qualifications to your training contract application. Now, before I get started, I just want to raise a couple of points. If you do have international qualifications, or non-U.K. qualifications, it's not going to negatively impact on your application. If you just look at law firms and international law firms, you'll see that the profile of lawyers within these firms is very international. So we're used to seeing candidates with non-U.K. based qualifications. But I just want to give you some pointers on how to add that to your applications.

Tell us what the qualification is

So the first point, really simple one, the first step: Tell us what the qualification is. We may have heard of some of them, but probably won't have heard of all of them. So the first step is simply to tell us what it is.

Tell us what the grading system is

The second step is to tell us what the grading system is. This is really important for us. So in the U.K., we usually have A* to U at GCSE and A levels. But, for example with the International Baccalaureate, it's a scale of 1 to 7. Then we see the GPA, the American system, so 1 to 4. So as long as you tell us what the grading system is, that's a good start.

Tell us what grade you achieved

Now, the next step is, tells us what grades you achieved. So what you actually scored. So if you did the IB and you got 6, that make sense. And if you did the GPA and you got 4, that makes sense. And where possible, and this is the next step, try and tell us what the equivalence is. Sometimes it will be obvious, sometimes it won't be. And I appreciate that the equivalence might not be as easy for some qualifications, but if you can help us with that, that's going to help us a lot when it comes to reading your application.


But for example, with the IB, let's say you scored 45 - now, that's the absolute maximum you can score - but we know that that would equate to five A* at A Level. If you did the GPA and you got a 4, we know that that's equivalent to a first-class degree. So it then gives us some context.

And that's the four-step process that you should follow. So tell us what the qualification is, tell us what the grading system is, tell us what you actually achieved, and then tell us what the equivalence is. And if you give us that information, there's going to be no problems evaluating your application form. I hope you find that useful, and I'll see the next "Whiteboard Wednesday." If you have any suggestions on what these topics could be, add it in the comments section below this blog, and we're more than happy to do "Whiteboard Wednesdays" based on some of the questions that you submit. See you next time.

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