• 7+/8+ English and Maths
• 11+ English and Maths: ISEB and public school exams
• 13+ English, History, Maths, Science, Geography, R.S: ISEB and public school entrance exams
• GCSE/IGCSE English, Maths and History (All exam boards)
• A-level English (All exam boards)
• A-level History (All exam boards)
• A-level Business Studies (All exam boards)
• International Baccalaureate essay writing in History and related Humanities subjects
• English as a foreign language (All exam boards)
• Oxford University History Aptitude Test preparation
• Oxford University interview preparation
• Post-graduate degree applications in the Humanities
• Undergraduates - mentoring and providing additional tutorial support for undergraduates reading for degrees in History, War Studies, International Relations, Political Science, Area Studies, Business and related subjects.
• Exam invigilation
Over many years I have accumulated ad hoc experience in tutoring students of varying ages and abilities in a range of subjects, in particular History, English and business-related subjects. I have tutored several students in preparation for the Oxford University History Aptitude Test (HAT) who have gone on to read History at Oxford. I have tutored (individually) a large number of students at A level and university level in essay planning and writing, particularly for History, but also for English and other related subjects. I also tutor students for GCSE English, especially those who are struggling at Foundation level. More and more courses now offer research project modules, requiring students to undertake qualitative or quantitative research; I have helped a number of students develop rigorous research proposals with appropriate methodologies and analysis at both IB and undergraduate levels. Some students at university struggle to adapt to unfamiliar academic challenges, and I have helped several students to improve their performance substantially at university. I should also mention that I greatly enjoy providing teaching support for my own daughter, now 14 years old. Because I do not teach full time, I feel that I can bring fresh perspectives to the curricula, and can give real help in students’ acquisition of a deeper understanding of their subjects.
I am an experienced writer on investment, business management and personal finance. I am the author of more than 30 books, and have been translated into many languages, including Chinese, Japanese, Russian, Polish, German, Slovak, Arabic, Spanish, Italian and Portuguese. My latest book. 'The Con Men: A History of Financial Fraud' (Financial Times/Pearson) surveys the major financial frauds of the last few decades and discusses ways investors can protect themselves from major losses in the financial markets.
I have also translated several academic books from Turkish into English, mainly on historical topics.
As a historian, my specialist research field is the eastern provinces of the late Ottoman empire. I am currently working on an annotated translation of the 1917-1918 diary of an Ottoman cavalry lieutenant who fought on the Turco-Iranian border against the Russians, and then in what is now Iraq against the British. The diary, which is extensive, was handwritten in Ottoman script at the front, and is a rare and important primary source for this under-researched aspect of World War One. This is a long term project.
For several years I have been providing transcriptions/translations of Ottoman seals found by the Great Arab Revolt Project excavations in Jordan. See:
As a journalist, I contribute occasional articles to various media outlets, mostly on current events in the Near East and in South East Asia.
I studied at Oxford University, obtaining a BA Hons in Modern History (defined at Oxford as beginning in the 5th century AD) and an MPhil in Modern Middle Eastern Studies, specialising in Turkish and late Ottoman language and history.
I attended Downside School, Somerset, UK (a well-known Catholic public school) during the 1970s, gaining A levels in Latin, English and Psychology.
Prior to that, I attended a prep school, Moor Park, near Ludlow, Shropshire, UK for two years.
I spent most of my early childhood in Turkey, where my father worked for many years as a British archaeologist. I also spent a year at school in the US and two years at school in Canada.
My main goal is to identify any problem areas the student is experiencing with the school or university syllabus, and to address these appropriately, using a range of techniques. I seek to make learning fun, and often find that this can be achieved by showing how and why a topic is meaningful. I encourage students to participate fully in the planning of learning goals and in assessing the learning outcomes. With older students in particular, I endeavour to encourage critical thinking and to broaden their understanding of their subject. I have a particular interest in helping students with critical thinking, essay planning, essay writing, understanding academic texts, and coping with difficult concepts.
What I do when I am not tutoring
When not tutoring, my main activities are historical research, language learning (I am currently learning Romanian), investment writing, occasional journalism, and editing academic articles for other scholars. When not working I enjoy flying gliders, sailing and foreign travel, particularly in the Far East, where I have a number of investments.
"The feedback from my daughter r.e. the tutoring was very positive. She found the session a great learning experience. As a parent, I feel Leo was extremely flexible with how he could support her during the run up to the HAT. Couldn’t ask for more!"
"I am so glad to see my daughter enjoy the lesson with you so much and she always smiles a big smile after the lesson. She is more and more fascinated with Classic and feels more comfortable with English. I really like your way of guiding her which she needs very much. She needs the guidance about what are the books she should read or what are the information she should explore. I told her she is lucky to have you as her tutor." English student in Singapore (UKiset test)
"My daughter worked very well with Leo in the first lessons. I also spoke to him directly and exchanges a few emails. I really appreciate Leo's efforts on understanding my daughter's background and tailoring the teaching method for her. He also worked hard to motivate her. It is not an easy task for Leo but I have faith that he can help her to make some real changes." UKiset test preparation from Singapore
"The first lesson was great! He gave me feedback on what I've done (a practice paper) and led me to think creatively when I was tackling question 3. Thank you for recommending me a great tutor!" History Oxford applicant - HAT preparation
2/12/20 'He has been offered a place at Brighton and a scholarship at Hurst, the two schools at the top of our list. Thank you for all your help.'
18/9/20 'She has learnt a great deal from you and recognizes she has a lot more to learn.'
30/7/2020 'James enjoyed the lesson with Leo, he felt the quality of the teaching was amongst the best he’s had so far.'
8/6/2020 'As much as I know my son, he’s capable of reaching great heights when attended with love and patience, which is exactly what you offered to him.'
8/2/2016 'My parents have just got an email saying that I have been accepted into the school. Thanks for all the help in preparing me for the entrance exams!
21/10/2015 'Your tutoring has started him thinking in ways he would not have otherwise. And for that we are grateful.'
15/09/2015 'I would like to thank you for the ongoing tuition you have provided since January 2015 to my daughter... who is doing the International Baccalaureate finals this year in Singapore.
You have helped her enormously with her essay writing and with her use of English – here in Singapore she is influenced by the creole ‘Singlish’ of the other students and the environment and this creeps into her written work. She has become much more able to distinguish between Singlish and formal English under your guidance.
Thanks to supervision her critical thinking and intellectual maturity are much improved.'
1/12/2011 'Leo has helped her acquire a much greater vocabulary and has ensured that she is able to say, read and write the words accurately...We have noticed a tremendous difference in our daughter's confidence levels and she has begun to enjoy the subject at school'