Skip to content
Skip to main content

About this free course

Become an OU student

Download this course

Share this free course

Law and change: Scottish legal heroes
Law and change: Scottish legal heroes

Start this free course now. Just create an account and sign in. Enrol and complete the course for a free statement of participation or digital badge if available.

Week 2: An overview of the legal history of Scotland


The legal history of Scotland is both complex and fascinating. Law has played a key role in the evolution of Scottish society. The maintenance of an independent and separate legal system has influenced Scottish history. Within the different legal jurisdiction of the UK, the Scottish legal system holds a unique place. It is held in high regard internationally and has a rich history of legal jurists, legal thinking and reflecting change.

Scotland’s laws and legal institutions were influenced by a wide range of sources as they developed. During this week you will explore a number of those influences and will gain an appreciation how the current system both emerged from, and is based on, its medieval roots.

By the end of this week you will be able to:

  • explain a range of historical events relevant to the development of the legal system
  • describe the role of the institutional writers
  • appreciate how the current legal system emerged from its historical roots.