You may be confused by these legal qualifications because there are many routes to becoming a qualified lawyer in England and Wales.
Solicitors Qualifying Examination (SQE)
It is the equivalent of the bar exam for solicitors. This qualification will eventually replace the LPC as the only route to becoming a qualified solicitor. Anyone with a recognised university degree can take this exam.
Legal Practice Course (LPC)
It is the final stage of training to become a qualified solicitor. This qualification is being phased out by the SQE. Only students with a qualifying law degree, exempting law degree, PGDL or GDL are eligible for admission.
Chartered Institute of Legal Executives (CILEX)
It is an alternative route to becoming a qualified lawyer, but CILEX professionals can only call themselves qualified lawyers or CILEX lawyers, not solicitors or barristers. CILEX lawyers can only practise in a particular area of law they specialise in and have trained to the same standard as a solicitor in that area, unlike solicitors who can practise in many different areas of law. Anyone with any qualification can apply for admission though the starting point depends on the qualification the applicant holds.
Bar Professional Training Course (BPTC)
It is a qualification for professionals who want to practise as barristers. UK law schools use different names for this qualification, including BPC (Bar Practice Course), BVC (Bar Vocational Course), BTC (Bar Training Course) and BVS (Bar Vocational Studies).
Graduate Diploma in Law (GDL)
It is a law conversion course for non-law graduates who want to become a qualified solicitor or barrister before the introduction of the SQE. It is now being replaced by PGDL though some UK law schools continue to use the same name for their new law conversion course.
Postgraduate Diploma in Law (PGDL)
It is a new law conversion course for non-law graduates who want to become a solicitor or barrister after the introduction of the SQE. The curriculum is similar to that of GDL but is geared towards the SQE. It will eventually replace GDL as the law conversion course for university graduates.