SQE1 assessment days

What happens on the day 

Assessment centres and arrival times

After you have booked your SQE1 assessment, we will send you an email that includes:

  • confirmation of the address of the assessment centre
  • the time you must report to the assessment centre to go through the booking-in process
  • the start time of the assessment
  • the length of the assessment day.

You must be on time. If you are late, you cannot enter the assessment.

Arriving at the test centre before the start of the assessment

When you arrive, you will register and complete ID and security checks. Please check the information in your booking confirmation email before setting off for your assessment.

Watch a video showing what happens when you arrive at the assessment centre.

Once you are seated at your workstation, you must make a Fit to Sit declaration and confirm that you understand that the content of the assessment is confidential, and that you are bound by the Assessment Regulations.

Learn more: Fit to Sit Policy

Learn more: Candidate Confidentiality Policy

Learn more: Assessment Regulations

You won’t be allowed to take the assessment if you don’t complete these requirements. Once you have sat the assessment, if you feel that something has happened that could affect your performance during the assessment, you can submit a claim for mitigating circumstances.

Pearson VUE testing rules

Key points in the Pearson VUE testing rules:

No personal items (including but not limited to water, mobile phones, other electronic devices, watches, purses, books and notes) are allowed in the assessment room. There will be a secure place to store your items during the assessment.

You will be provided with an erasable whiteboard notepad and marker pen to be used only during the assessment. These must be handed in at the end of the assessment.

The test administrator will:

  • log you on to your assigned workstation
  • verify that you are taking the intended assessment
  • start the assessment.

Once the assessment has started, you must remain in your assigned seat until escorted out by a test administrator.

You must not eat, drink, chew gum, smoke or make noise that disturbs other candidates during the assessment. 

You will be monitored at all times during the assessment. This can include CCTV recordings.

You must leave the assessment room during all breaks. After all breaks, ID checks are carried out before you will be readmitted to the assessment room.

During any unscheduled breaks:

  • the assessment timer is not stopped
  • access to personal belongings, other than for water or to obtain medication, is not permitted.

You must notify the test assessment administrator immediately of any problems or distractions which affect your ability to do the assessment by raising your hand.

Test administrators cannot answer questions about the content of the assessment.

COVID-19 related measures

Please review the Coronavirus (COVID-19) related information.


You will be provided with all necessary equipment, including an online calculator. You may not use any of your own equipment.

Personal possessions

Please do not bring personal possessions into the assessment. Your booking confirmation email has more information about what to expect in a Pearson VUE Test centre.

As storage space is limited, you should bring only a small bag. All personal belongings must be put in the secure lockers provided.

Dress code

There is no dress code for SQE1. You can wear what you feel comfortable in, but you may be asked to remove bulky external clothing during security checks.

Length of SQE1

SQE1 consists of two assessments (FLK1 and FLK2) that are taken on two separate days. On each day, the assessment is divided into two sessions of 2 hours 33 minutes (or 153 minutes in total), with 90 questions in each session.

Leaving the assessment room during the assessment, including access to water

You may only leave the assessment room to use the bathroom, have a drink of water, eat or obtain medication if necessary. This will be monitored and any breach of this can be reported as a breach of the SQE Assessment Regulations. If you do access water, food or medication, this is an unscheduled break and the assessment timer is not stopped (i.e. your assessment time continues to run). Talking to other candidates during an unscheduled break is not permitted. If you think you will need to take medication during the assessment, please contact us in advance.

Leaving early

You cannot leave the assessment early.

Scheduled break between the assessment sessions

A 60-minute break is scheduled at the end of Session 1. Please return within 50 minutes.

During the break you may:

  • leave the assessment centre
  • have access to your personal belongings.

Important: Before the end of the scheduled break you must re-register for Session 2. Make sure you are back in the assessment centre within 50 minutes to allow time for re-registration. If you are late you will not be admitted to Session 2.

Water and other refreshments

Water and other refreshments aren't provided for the assessments. You must make your own arrangements for food, water and other refreshments. If in doubt, please bring your own supplies. Water and refreshments are not permitted in the assessment room.

Length of each SQE1 day

The booking confirmation email will confirm the length of your day. The total amount of time is given in minutes and includes the:

  • explanatory tutorial
  • time allowed to complete the Fit to Sit declaration, the Candidate Confidentiality Policy and accept the Assessment Regulations
  • 60-minute scheduled break (remember to return after 50 minutes to re-register for session 2).

What to expect at the assessment centre

SQE does not have exclusive occupancy of Pearson VUE centres. You should be aware that rooms may be occupied by candidates who are sitting an assessment of a different length and so may arrive before or after your assessment has started. Some candidates may also have reasonable adjustments and may be finishing their SQE assessment at a different time or may be sitting in a different part of the building.

Therefore you may find the Pearson VUE test centre environment different to what you have encountered before when sitting exams, for example at university or at other educational establishments. You are advised to familiarise yourself with the Pearson VUE setting by watching the short video about the Pearson VUE test centres.

Every effort is made to provide a quiet environment. But assessment centres are sited in city centres, and we have no control over building or traffic noise which may occur outside.

Identification and security

You will need to provide ID and go through security checks before you take your assessment.

Learn more: ID verification

Ready to register for the SQE?

Create your personal SQE account and book your assessments.

Register for SQE 

Have you passed the SQE?

Find out what happens after passing the SQE and admission to the roll of solicitors.

Learn more

Ready to register for the SQE?

Create your personal SQE account and book your assessments.

Register for SQE 

Have you passed the SQE?

Find out what happens after passing the SQE and admission to the roll of solicitors.

Learn more