This page explains the role of Authorised Education and Training Organisations (AETOs) and sets out how to apply to become an AETO.

In April 2019, we published an Authorisation Framework which sets out the standards that an organisation must meet in order to be authorised to provide education and training for the Bar. We will use the Authorisation Framework as the basis for our decisions on who becomes Authorised Education and Training Organisations (AETOs).

AETOs are authorised to deliver one or all components of training for the Bar through one of four approved training pathways. The term includes organisations previously known as Providers, Pupillage Training Organisations and Approved Training Organisations. It does not include those who deliver only the academic component of training.


How to apply

Providers of academic and/or vocational training for the Bar

If you are an organisation that wants to deliver vocational or integrated academic and vocational training for the Bar, you must meet the criteria for authorisation set out in the Authorisation Framework. You will need to apply for authorisation as an AETO using the link below. Guidance is available in the portal to help you to understand the type of evidence that should be submitted with an application. It is also available here.

Providers of academic and/or vocational training for the Bar can apply for authorisation through the MyBar portal. If you have any questions about the process, please contact VBT@barstandardsboard.org.uk.

We will publish the details of any vocational or integrated academic and vocational AETOs who have been authorised or conditionally authorised on our website. We will also publish the details of anyone who has expressed a formal intention to submit an application.

New providers of pupillage training

If you are a chambers or other organisation that wants to start providing pupillage for the first time, you must meet the criteria for authorisation set out in the Authorisation Framework. You will need to apply for authorisation as an AETO. Applications must be accompanied by the supporting documentation that is required by us and payment of the requisite fee. We may visit an AETO seeking authorisation.

You can apply for authoriastion as an AETO through the MyBar portal. Guidance is available in the portal to help you to understand the type of evidence that should be submitted with an application. It is also available here.

If you have any questions about the process, please contact authorisations@barstandardsboard.org.uk.

Existing providers of pupillage training

If you are a chambers or other organisation already approved by us to provide pupillage, and you want to continue to do so in the future, you must also meet the criteria for authorisation set out in the Authorisation Framework. You must also apply for authorisation as an AETO. However, existing providers of pupillage can continue to provide pupillage and advertise for new pupils. We will be in contact with existing pupillage providers in due course to discuss how and when you will be authorised to be AETOs. 


Cost of applications

For all providers of academic and/or vocational training and new providers of pupillage training, a flat fee of £250 will be charged to cover the cost of an initial review of the application. The output of this initial review will be an estimate indicating what further steps we will need to take to be satisfied that the application meets the requirements as set out in the Authorisation Framework.

We anticipate that in many cases, especially with applications from prospective pupillage AETOs, the application itself will suffice with no further steps (or assessment costs) required. However, should we require more information from you due to the complexity or scale of your proposed training pathway, indicative costs for the steps we will need to take to help us assess your proposal include:

  • Staff Time @ up to £500 per day;
  • Expert Advisor @ up to £400 per day;
  • Travel and other costs actually incurred.

Existing pupillage providers will not be charged an application fee.

AETOs providing training for the academic and vocational (integrated) or vocational components will be charged a per-capita fee of £870 for initial authorisation and, in subsequent years, a per-capita charge for each intake of students for authorisation to deliver the vocational component of training to cover our operational and ongoing costs. Where the vocational component is split into two parts, as in the four-step pathway outlined in the Authorisation Framework, the per-capita fee will be split, into £575 for part one and £295 for part two of the vocational component.

Pupillage and work-based learning providers (existing and new), such as chambers, will not be charged a per capita authorisation or intake fee.


video image

Implementing the Professional Statement in pupillage

Julia Witting, Head of Supervision at the Bar Standards Board, explains how to implement the Professional Statement in pupillage.


Contact us

If you have any questions about anything on this page, please contact us:

Queries relating to AETOs delivering the academic and/or vocational component: VBT@barstandardsboard.org.uk

Queries relating to AETOs delivering pupillage/work-based learning: authorisations@barstandardsboard.org.uk 


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