At Learning Unlimited, Ibtisaam offers both enrichment courses as well as support for students taking an Extended Project Qualification (EPQ) on topics related to law and politics as part of their A levels.
Ibtisaam approaches the study and teaching of law in terms of the law’s potential to protect values that promote the public good and as a vehicle for exercising the autonomy of individuals. Students may enroll in law courses with Learning Unlimited in small groups or one-to-one and may be in person or online.
Why Choose Law
Every human being is in daily contact with the law, but most of us hardly ever reflect on the following questions:
- why do we need law?
- how are laws made?
- how do judges make decisions?
By completing a law course at Learning Unlimited, students will begin to find the answers to these and other questions that affect the running of society as well as the public good.
While some students will enroll because they know they want to read law at university, these courses equip students with the tools to approach any field of study, including politics, sociology, philosophy, economics and literature. To engage in a study of law is to examine the interaction between law, morals, justice and society.
These courses will nurture in students a number of transferable skills including analytical skills, logical thinking, research skills, essay writing skills and the ability to construct a sound and convincing argument. An introduction to the Socratic method, used across law schools in the United States, will help students formulate arguments and present them confidently in a coherent and concise manner.
Topics In Law
Law courses at Learning Unlimited cover the foundational principles of law and legal theories. We will consider the dichotomy between law and morality and survey major areas of law and their operation in contemporary political thought and policy. Civil unrest, climate change and Covid19 have also made fresh perspectives on rights and responsibilities necessary to consider and reflect on. Additional courses will provide an introduction to key concepts within the Cambridge A level law syllabus including the common law and the English legal system, criminal law, the law of contract and the law of tort.
How Can Law Help Me Understand Myself And The World Today?
When we think of “the law” and how it operates, we often imagine a technical act involving the application of objective methods to relevant facts. Law is frequently regarded as something rational and judgment-free with little focus on ethical or political dilemmas. Yet, law and legal studies can in fact, provide a window into reflecting on the state of our society, our values and our understanding of justice.
Law governs our lives in ways that are more profound than we may realize and thus an understanding of law and what it entails is crucial when examining the way we live and our approach to life. For example, the protection offered to us through the doctrine of human rights and civil liberties is a direct result of the belief that every human being has inherent dignitas that is worthy of protection. Thus, to interrogate our rights and the duties we owe to others involves a meditation on what dignitas or dignity entails. Once we have made sense of this we may be able to explore how best this dignity can be protected.
Thus, this approach to teaching law will be one which is not limited to legal technicalities, but covers fundamental principles and asks questions about the kind of world we live in and how best to protect values that promote the public good. These questions are proving crucial during this time of uncertainty, in which there is a need for a radical shift in thinking in order to grapple with fundamental questions about our current methods of practicing medicine, educating, doing business, thinking and living. Such a shift requires imagination and in studying law, students will be encouraged to think laterally in order to make up their own minds and develop creative arguments.
Law is therefore a crucial tool in understanding oneself and the world in which we live. As Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes (1841 – 1935) famously stated:
“The life of the law has not been logic: it has been experience. The felt necessities of the time, the prevalent moral and political theories, intuitions of public policy, avowed or unconscious, even the prejudices which judges share with their fellow-men, have had a good deal more to do than the syllogism in determining the rules by which men should be governed.”
I began working with Learning Unlimited at the beginning of September 2020 in preparation for my family’s emigration to the UK. My aim was to bridge any knowledge gaps between the South African and UK syllabi while doing the best I could in the UK school entrance exams. The more I got into it, the more I realized how big the gap in content is between the South African syllabus and the UK syllabus!
Learning Unlimited prepared a bespoke programme to tutor me in my chosen subjects. I was set up with a team of amazing tutors in History, Maths, English, Economics and Debating. I had a total of 6 or 7 lessons per week in addition to my regular South African schoolwork. All of my tutors were very understanding about my tough work-load, they were knowledgeable in their subject areas and assisted me with enthusiasm, care and energy. After many tutoring sessions and hours of writing Sixth Form entrance exams, I was accepted into all of my top UK school choices!
The past few months working with the Learning Unlimited team has really helped to fuel my intellectual curiosity and has greatly assisted me in making the jump from the SA syllabus to the UK standard.
In addition, I undertook a HAB career aptitude test run by Diana Ritchie. It was a very well-structured test and asked a variety of questions and tested my natural abilities and suitability for various types of employment. The results I received were very accurate and detailed and helped me to get clarity on my possible future career options, A-level subject choice and university aspirations.
I would definitely recommend Learning Unlimited to anyone trying to transition from the South African to the UK school syllabus.
– Chloe Coutts-Trotter