“Engaging Students in Islamic Business Law: A Successful Course at University of Helsinki with Published Blog Posts”

By Sanaa Kadi,

Between February 6th and March 3rd, 2023, the Faculty of Law at the University of Helsinki offered a unique course on Islamic business law for the second time. The course was held in the university’s main building, which is a true masterpiece of architecture in Helsinki, located in the heart of the city, it is considered one of the most beautiful buildings in Helsinki with its majestic facade and intricate details. The course attracted students from diverse backgrounds who were eager to learn about the principles and practices of Islamic finance. The last course was held in the autumn of 2021.

Designed to provide a comprehensive overview of Islamic business law, the 5 credits course covered a range of topics including the sources of Islamic law, the development of Islamic business law, the different Islamic financial transactions, dispute resolutions, and the principles of Maqasid-al-Sharia. Maqasid-al-Sharia refers to the objectives or goals of Islamic law, which are based on the teachings of the primary sources of Islamic law, namely the Quran and the Sunnah. These objectives include the preservation of faith, life, intellect, family, and property, as well as the promotion of justice, equality, and the common good.

Throughout the course, the law students were highly engaged and dedicated to understanding the principles of Islamic law and their practical applications in modern business transactions. Many of them come from non-Muslim backgrounds and are curious about the legal and ethical aspects of Islamic finance. To further enhance their learning, the students were required at the end of the course to present a blog post about one of the topics covered in the course. These blog posts are published in the university’s blog, Islamic Business and Financial Law.

The course was designed to encourage critical thinking about the principles of Islamic law and their relevance to contemporary business practices. To facilitate this, the students engaged in lively debates and challenged each other’s assumptions, which fostered a deeper understanding of the subject matter.

“There were sufficient materials and guidance to help with the learning. I mostly enjoyed the little ‘to-do’ tasks during and after the lesson. It was interactive and interesting.”

The course also emphasized experiential learning, allowing students to apply the principles of Islamic business law to real-world situations. For example, the students were required to work on different assignments and exercises that involved the development of solutions that complied with Islamic legal and ethical standards.

Overall, the course on Islamic business law at the University of Helsinki was a great success, attracting a diverse range of students who were eager to learn about Islamic finance and its principles. The course was engaging, practical, and thought-provoking, and helped foster a deeper understanding of Islamic law and its applications in the contemporary world. The blog posts written by the students provided valuable insights into the course topics and demonstrated their understanding of the principles of Islamic business law.


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