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OU unveils free courses on law in Scotland

Scottish Parliament

A suite of free courses on law in Scotland have been released by The Open University.

The courses – The Scottish Parliament and law-making, Scottish courts and the law, Legal skills and debates in Scotland, and Law and change: Scottish legal heroes – come twenty years on from the historic vote for devolution and are intended to aid public understanding of the law and legal institutions.

At a time of great political change and uncertainty, the courses explore Scotland’s constitutional position, the law-making process in Scotland, and how developments such as the establishment of the UK Supreme Court have affected Scotland’s distinctive legal system.

Annabelle Ewing MSP, Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs, said:

“This new online resource provides a fantastic opportunity for those interested in law making in Scotland to gain an understanding of Scots law and the legal processes which underpin our system overall.

“I hope that these courses inspire and encourage people from all walks of life to take up free learning and give them the opportunity to progress onto further flexible learning courses in future.

“I am pleased that the funding allocated from the Scottish Government to the Open University is being used in an innovative way.”

Susan Stewart, Director of The Open University in Scotland, said:

“The Open University is as relevant today as it was when we were founded 50 years ago. We have always been committed to making learning accessible to as wide a range of people as possible, regardless of their previous education.

“The law affects everyone and it’s important that people can understand not just the legal and political landscape but their rights as citizens. These new, free courses try to make it easy for people to build that understanding and at a time and place which suits them.”

The new courses, which are freely available in line with The Open University’s social mission to make quality learning as widely available as possible, will be celebrated at an event at the Scottish Parliament this evening (Wednesday 15 November).

Liz Smith MSP, sponsor of the event, said:

“The Open University is an exceptionally important and flourishing part of the university system. Apart from the high academic standards of which it should be very proud it adds diversity and flexibility for many students, including many adult learners.

“These new free courses are a welcome addition to their already diverse offering. 

“Ensuring that anyone and everyone can access higher education is very important and The Open University plays a vital role within this and I look forward to welcoming them to the Scottish Parliament.”

The event will be attended by representatives of the legal and justice sector, local authorities, educational institutions and various public sector bodies, as well as teachers and pupils from schools offering the courses through The Open University’s Young Applicants in Schools Scheme (YASS).

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