Sam Irving - Private Tutor in North West London
My name is Sam and I am a would-be barrister with a particular interest in medical law and its associated ethics. I got to the Bar course, where I am currently, via Oxford, KCL and a little northern town where I grew up with my Mum and Dad.
After a whirlwind of youth in school and college, I managed to stay just about upright and with a decent record of attainment to see me out of the door with something of a course plotted. I like to think I did a little here and there to help some of my friends out along the way.
I took plenty of opportunities to hear my own voice, with debating and mooting competitions dotting my CV. I like to think I've learned to control my verbosity and use it only for the forces of good now.
Oxford was an education in many more ways than one and the fabled tutorial teaching was a reinvigoration in the power and enjoyment that exists in a focused teaching session. My friends are I'm sure all delighted that I have adopted the method whenever I'm trying to teach them something important .... even if they don't always want to hear it.
When I manage to put work and my oratory to one side, I try to balance it all out with a healthy smattering of song, dance, tea and cake. Because that's what life's really all about.
Subjects I Teach
My Education & Qualifications
King's College London, 2017 – 2018
Medical Ethics and Law (MA): TBA
University of Oxford, 2014 – 2017
Jurisprudence (Law) (BA): 2:1
School: Humberston Academy
My local secondary school (GCSE level) was a small, tightly knit community and the teachers were consistently committed to helping my peers and I achieve highly with extra support, classes and importantly their time and expertise.
A*'s : Mathematics, English Literature, English Language, History, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Ethics and Morals, Drama, Business Studies.
and an OCR National Award in ICT
I was awarded a special recognition for the highest results in my year.
School: Franklin College
My sixth-form/FE college (A-level) was much larger than my previous school, with people taking a variety of subjects. My subjects were:
Further Mathematics A
English Language A*
Ancient History B
I won the national final of the Debating Matters annual competition whilst studying here, alongside 3 of my friends.
My Tutoring & Teaching Experience
As I sat on the chairs in classrooms across my school, I would often remember them by the people who were around me. School is a symbiotic process not only between the teachers and students but the students themselves. There were many times I would find myself both the source and recipient of assistance, explanation, justification or enrichment of my knowledge, understanding and whole learning for my classmates.
The peak of this mini-career arrived during my A-level years when the College set up a mentoring program designed to foster a sense of community in those of us with the unenviable task of studying for two maths A-levels. We would offer lunchtime support sessions to those who had not yet studied topics we had. We would set new problems, work through reasons and solutions, check work and otherwise offer support with all aspects of our peers' learning.
I have since had the chance to return to these institutions from time to time and offer short lectures to students about my experiences, tips, tricks and generally to offer advice about the learning process - particularly from the perspective of someone who has navigated it successfully.
My Approach to Tutoring
The crucial part of learning something new is understanding. This is a complex state which requires lots of bits of your brain to work together effectively. Knowledge will only take you so far, but understanding is the cornerstone that allows you into the world of the subject you are studying.
Having had the benefit of an Oxford education, I am, perhaps unsurprisingly, a big proponent of their method! But importantly I take this approach because it is the one which has worked for me for many years prior to university and which I take with me into my (hopefully) future legal career.
What this means is that I aim to teach so that a student can interact fully with each topic they learn, ultimately leading to an understanding of the greater whole. The method I use has two key parts:
The first element is applying a logical structure to break down, detail, justify and analyse any topic into its core constituent parts. This is a skill that one has to develop to an extent in many professions, but which it is a great benefit to have done for you, and indeed to learn through observing the method in practice. Think of it like the lecture element of a course, a guided tour of the core parts of a topic.
The second element is the seminar or tutorial aspect. This involves using the structure which will have been developed and set out by the tutor to interrogate the student's knowledge. This will be built upon to enable the student to connect their knowledge together and to form a matrix which draws on all the elements as they understand them.
From here it is possible to use various testing methods to encourage confidence in a student as to their knowledge and understanding of a topic. The aim is that by the end of a course of tutoring, a student can feel they could fully explain that topic to another and to be asked any question about it and give a correct and well-reasoned answer.
Ultimately, appreciating the connections between the information and knowledge one has is the core of building confidence and success in a topic and indeed a whole field. This is what I aim to give students.
Fun Facts About Me
When my face is not buried in great tomes of legal scholarship in my training to become a barrister, I try to keep myself entertained with a healthy (read: probably unhealthy but don't tell anyone) mix of music, cooking, baking, and video games - the latter of which I am a big proponent of the educational value of, if you ever want to hear one of my famous polemics.
As to the rest, I am a great lover of food and try to learn the ropes of tasty treats from a mixture of my Mum and Mary Berry wherever I can.
I like to think my music tastes are eclectic, ranging from Wagner to Queen through hits of the musicals and film music. If I'm not humming to myself as I work through the latest aspect of medical law, then I'm dancing and singing my way around the kitchen, much to my housemate's infinite delight.
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Otherwise, you can read about our tutor selection criteria, or read about Wentworth Education's philosophy and approach in a letter to parents from Dr Katherine Wiles, our Founder. You can also see more tutor profiles on our tutors listing page, where you can filter by subject.
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