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University of Cape Town

Paralegal Practitioner online short course


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Receive a certificate from the University of Cape Town on successful completion of the course.

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Paralegals, also known as legal assistants or secretaries, fill an essential role in the South African legal system. Those hoping to enter this fast-growing profession need to have a combination of relevant industry knowledge, specialist technical expertise and administrative ability.

This highly practical 16-week short course equips you with a broad knowledge of South African legislation and gives you a foundation on which to build the knowledge and expertise required for specific paralegal work. This course has been designed for both existing and aspiring paralegal practitioners including legal support staff, legal assistants, personal assistants, legal secretaries and paralegals working in a legal or commercial environment.

Course modules

Module 1 Introduction to South African law
Module 2 Sources of South African law
Module 3 Classification of South African law
Module 4 Introduction to the legal and paralegal profession
Module 5 Private law and civil law procedures
Module 6 Criminal law and the law of criminal procedure
Module 7 Business law
Module 8 Law of evidence
Module 9 Courts and alternative dispute resolution
Module 10  The Constitution and the impact of HIV/ AIDS on the law
Module 11 Human rights
Module 12 Legal comparison and perspectives on the law
Module 13 Legal language and reading
Module 14 Legal writing skills
Module 15 Legal argument, logic, interview and oral advocacy skills
Module 16 Legal research skills

Getsmarter marianne anderson
“I have found the GetSmarter online course to be much more efficient and stimulating than the distance learning option. In my view, this is a great system, which provides a great deal of stimulation as a result of the interaction with other students.” Marianne Anderson
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