IIE Higher Certificate in Legal Studies

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The Independent Institute of Education (The IIE)

Higher Certificate in Legal Studies

(SAQA ID number: 94696)

For those with the skills, drive and initiative, the legal work environment is a place of great opportunity and reward. This higher certificate develops and provides students with a broad range of foundational legal skills including communication, various aspects of South African law and legal office management.



The IIE has been internationally recognised and accredited by The British Accreditation Council (BAC). The BAC has been responsible for setting Standards within the independent further and higher education sector for 25 years. Their accreditation is held by hundreds of colleges in the UK and overseas. They provide the leading mark of educational quality for the sector, which is used by students, parents, agencies and beyond as a guarantee of standards. For more information please visit http://www.the-bac.org



Curriculum and content is subject to change.

Students will be required to register per academic year.

Fees stated are per academic year and not for the full qualification.

Students who are unsuccessful in a module/modules will need to reregister.

Academic year means the annual period of instruction normally running from 1 January until 31 December or from 1 July until 30 June the following year or any other period stipulated.

 British Accreditation Council
Course Information

What entry requirements will a student need to study towards this Higher Certificate?

A minimum of

  • A NSC with Higher Certificate admission – A minimum of 30% for English is required; or
  • A NC(V) with Higher Certificate admission – A minimum of 40% in English on either First Additional Language or Home Language level, with a minimum of 40% in Life Orientation and a minimum of 50% in four vocational subjects; or
  • A SC(without endorsement) or equivalent – A minimum of 5 subjects must be passed; or
  • Mature Age Exemption – Candidates must have attempted matric/Grade 12, attained the age of 23 before or during the first year of registration with three years’ or work experience and proven ability relating to the proposed programme as well as adequate communicative skills; or candidates must have attained the age of 45 before or during the first year of registration.
  • RPL – demonstrate suitability of admission in terms of Senate’s resolution 6.6 of 20 October 2005 which allows for Senate’s discretionary conditional admission (If applicable)

International students must ensure that: 

  • they have an equivalent qualification to the aforementioned;
  • their equivalent qualification is evaluated by the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA);
  • they have a study permit issued in the name of The Independent Institute of Education (The IIE) that is valid for the duration of the qualification.


Course Information

What qualification will the student obtain?

The Higher Certificate in Legal Studies conferred by The Independent Institute of Education (The IIE). Varsity College is an educational brand of The IIE.


Career opportunities: what career areas one can pursue on completion of this higher certificate?

  • Attorney’s assistant
  • Legal secretary
  • Paralegal assistant
  • General law-office assistant
  • Front office manager of a legal firm
  • Legal research assistant
  • Clerk in the Magistrate’s Court


The IIE Higher Certificate in Legal Studies Curriculum Plan

Year 1: 2016

  • Introduction to Scholarship A
  • Business Communications
  • **Fundamentals of the SA Legal System
  • **Legal Office Support
  • **Principles of Employment Law
  • Work Integrated Learning

Year 2: 2017

  • Introduction to Personal Computing
  • Law of Persons
  • Skills for Law
  • Aspects of Private Law
  • Family Law 1B
  • Work Integrated Learning

** These modules can also be completed as standalone Short Learning Programmes (SLPs)


Work Integrated Learning (WIL)

The aim of this practical component is to provide students with the opportunity to apply the skills and knowledge learnt. Some of the tasks are individual tasks whereas others require you to work in a group. The tasks that you must successfully complete form part of a portfolio of evidence.


Course Information

Who is this Higher Certificate aimed at?

Students interested in commencing or furthering a career within the legal environment.


What is this Higher Certificate’s accreditation status?

The IIE Higher Certificate in Legal Studies is accredited by the Higher Education Quality Council (HEQC) of the Council on Higher Education (CHE) and is registered with the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) on the National Qualifications Framework (NQF) as a 120-credit qualification on level 5 (SAQA ID: 94696).


How is this IIE Higher Certificate in Legal Studies (HCLS) structured at The Business School at Varsity College?

The HCLS is a two year part-time qualification consisting of 11 modules. The modules are delivered on a part-time basis with lectures either twice a week in the evening or on a Saturday morning. This Higher Certificate is scheduled in “blocks” of two modules at a time. Students will be required to complete various forms of assessments, portfolios, tests, a practical assessment in one of the modules, and examinations. In addition to attending lectures students will be expected to engage in self-directed study, preparing for lectures, conducting research and working on assignments.


What must a student pass in order to graduate with this Higher Certificate?

In order to be awarded this qualification, students must have achieved a minimum final year mark of fifty percent (50%) for each module of the programme; and have met all the Work Integrated Learning (WIL) requirements.


Course Information

The Business School

The Business School at Varsity College offers ambitious working adults the opportunity to build on their skills with convenient part-time study. You can choose from a variety of world class programmes, that won’t impact on your work hours.

Our aim is to provide a vibrant, fulfilling experience for students. And to ensure their return to a formal learning environment is as undaunting as possible. We offer a high standard of education, with high quality educators and hand-picked partners.

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