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Unit information: Law and State in 2022/23

Please note: It is possible that the information shown for future academic years may change due to developments in the relevant academic field. Optional unit availability varies depending on both staffing, student choice and timetabling constraints.

Unit name Law and State
Unit code LAWD10012
Credit points 20
Level of study C/4
Teaching block(s) Teaching Block 4 (weeks 1-24)
Unit director Dr. Robert Craig
Open unit status Not open
Units you must take before you take this one (pre-requisite units)


Units you must take alongside this one (co-requisite units)


Units you may not take alongside this one
School/department University of Bristol Law School
Faculty Faculty of Social Sciences and Law

Unit Information

The unit aims to introduce students to the main legal and political institutions of the UK and international orders of which it is a part; to consider their respective roles in the law-making process; and to understand their interrelationship.

Topics may include: states and constitutions; international law, EU law, and the constitution; parliamentary sovereignty; the constitutional role of the judiciary; the composition and procedures of Parliament; the executive; the regulatory state; devolution.

Your learning on this unit

By the end of this unit a successful student will be able to:

  • Describe the structure of the United Kingdom's constitution and its major institutions of government, as well as their functions and the principles which underpin them;
  • Describe the role of the constitution in regulating relationships between citizens and the state, between states themselves, and between states and supranational institutions;
  • Analyse the multi-layered nature of the United Kingdom’s constitution;
  • Discuss complex judicial decisions with multiple opinions;
  • Demonstrate independent research skills;
  • Analyse, synthesise, and offer critical evaluation of information, as well as expound systematically in writing the material in its political and historical context.

How you will learn

Teaching will be delivered through a variety of asynchronous and synchronous activities

How you will be assessed

1 x summative assessment: coursework with a specified word count (100%)

The assessment will assess all of the intended learning outcomes for this unit.


If this unit has a Resource List, you will normally find a link to it in the Blackboard area for the unit. Sometimes there will be a separate link for each weekly topic.

If you are unable to access a list through Blackboard, you can also find it via the Resource Lists homepage. Search for the list by the unit name or code (e.g. LAWD10012).

How much time the unit requires
Each credit equates to 10 hours of total student input. For example a 20 credit unit will take you 200 hours of study to complete. Your total learning time is made up of contact time, directed learning tasks, independent learning and assessment activity.

See the Faculty workload statement relating to this unit for more information.

The Board of Examiners will consider all cases where students have failed or not completed the assessments required for credit. The Board considers each student's outcomes across all the units which contribute to each year's programme of study. If you have self-certificated your absence from an assessment, you will normally be required to complete it the next time it runs (this is usually in the next assessment period).
The Board of Examiners will take into account any extenuating circumstances and operates within the Regulations and Code of Practice for Taught Programmes.