HOUSING AND WELFARE LAW

SHE Level 2
SCQF Credit Points 20.00
ECTS Credit Points 10.00
Module Code M2M122624
Module Leader Nicholas McKerrell
School Glasgow School for Business and Society
Subject Law
Trimester
  • B (January start)

Pre-Requisite Knowledge

Public Law 1 and 2 or Criminology and Criminal Justice.

Summary of Content

This module introduces the student to two areas of substantive law and underpinning policy in Scottish Housing and the Welfare State across the UK The Housing Law part of the course will examine the history and legal regulation of social housing and private rented accommodation in Scotland. The legal rights of tenants in a number of areas will be explained and analysed alongside the institutional structures of Scottish Housing. The subject of Homelessness law is also central to this area. Developments of the heavy regulation related to Scottish private landlords will also be explored. A study of primary legal sources: statutes and cases will be integrated into the course. The Welfare Law part of the course will examine the legal development of the Welfare state and benefit provisions with particular emphasis on periods of radical legal change. Specific benefits and credits will be explained and analysed culminating in the most recent upheaval: the Universal Credit and Benefit Cap. All legal developments will be contextualised. There will also be a detailed exploration of the benefits paid to individuals with illness and disability. Primary and secondary legal sources are integrated into the course. The role of lawyers in society is changing - lawyers are increasingly expected to be pro-active in the prediction and prevention of unethical as well as unlawful behaviour across all areas of society. The delivery of the module will embed PRME principles including: developing graduates who care about social responsibility; developing learning and teaching which enables graduates to become responsible leaders and practitioners; and developing graduates who will advise businesses and other stakeholders to explore mutually beneficial responses to social and legal challenges.

Syllabus

Housing Law History of Social /Private Housing in Scotland, Stock Transfer and approach to Private Landlords Legal Institutions related to Housing, Regulation of Scottish Housing - Owner Occupier/Private Landlord/Social Landlord, Property Factors Tenants' Rights: Allocation of Housing, Types of Tenancies, Scottish Secure and Assured Tenancies, Rents, Security of Tenure, Repair, Deposits, Homelessness Law Welfare Law History and Policy of creation of Welfare State Legal Institutions related to Welfare: Government Depts, Tribunals and Courts The Universal Credit: Creation and underpinning Policy. Means Test: Law and underpinning policy. Transitional Benefits: JobSeekers Allowance, Social Fund, Tax Credits and Housing Benefit. The Bedroom Tax changes.. The treatment of Sick and Disabled within Welfare Law

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module, the student should be able to:1. Demonstrate a comprehension of the legal principles and policies underpinning Housing Law2. Explain, apply and analyse the law surrounding social housing and its tenants' rights3. Explain, apply and analyse the law surrounding private rented housing and its tenants4. Explain, apply and analyse the law surrounding homelessness in Scotland5. Demonstrate a comprehension of the legal principles and policies underpinning Welfare Law6. Explain and analyse the legal structures of specific benefits within the Welfare System7. Explain and analyse the introduction of the Universal Credit8. Explain and analyse the treatment of the sick and disabled by the benefit system9. Apply this understanding to live situations10. Identify and retrieve up to date legal information using paper and electronic repositories; use primary and secondary legal sources which are relevant to the topic under study and current at the point of assessment; present knowledge and information using sources to support arguments and conclusions; provide recognised methods of citation and reference.11. Identify accurately and formulate clearly the legal issues to be researched; undertake independent research (both paper-based and electronic) in areas of law which have not been previously studied, using paper and electronic repositories to research new topics without reference to a reading list.12. PRME Learning Outcome: demonstrate an ability to explore ethical and socially responsible responses to issues arising within the context of the Housing and Welfare law.

Teaching / Learning Strategy

Students will attend three hours of lectures per week and one seminar hour per week. In conjunction with this Blended Learning will be fully utilised with lecture materials, podcasts and sources available via GCU Learn. The structured programme of learning undertaken will encourage active, independent student centred learning by requiring students to access and analyse a variety of primary and secondary source material in order to address and solve set questions and case studies. Internationalisation: The delivery of this module will set Scots, UK and EU law as appropriate in an international context. Feedback will be provided to students as follows: -360 1. Students will be provided with feedback within three weeks of submission of all summative assessments providing information on strengths, weaknesses and suggestions for corrective action to be applied in future submissions. The tutor will also provide generic feedback at the seminars where coursework will be handed back. Students may also discuss any points with their lecturer or tutor. -360 2. The virtual learning environment site will be used to feedback overall performance by students on all summative assessments highlighting overall strengths and weaknesses. -360 3. Discussion boards will be used to encourage teacher and peer-to-peer dialogue on certain topic areas where this form of communication would be regarded as effective. Student feedback on teaching, learning and assessment will be sought at the end of the semester through a module evaluation questionnaire. GSBS will continue to use the advancement of GCU Learn as a blended learning tool through its teaching and learning as well as through engagement with students. GSBS will ensure that all modules are GCU Learn enabled and with the support of the Learning Technologists at the cutting edge of development of online materials. Academic staff and the Learning Technologists will continue to work together to develop and operate all modules on GCU Learn to ensure student support and information sharing. Students are provided with formative and summative feedback via a variety of mechanisms. Feedback on coursework is provided within 3 working weeks of submission.

Indicative Reading

-567 Books and articles: Required Reading Peter Robson Housing Law in Scotland, 2011 Dundee Uni Press -3 Child Poverty Action Group Welfare Benefits & Tax Credits Handbook 2013-14 15 th Edition Additional Reading CMG Himsworth Housing Law in Scotland 4 th edition1994 Butterworths Tom Mullen Homelessness and the Law 4 th edition 2010 LSA. Peter Robson Residential Tenancies 3 rd edition 2012 W Green Adrian Stalker, Evictions in Scotland, 2007, Avizandum David Cowan, Housing Law and Policy, 2011, Cambridge University Press -567 Online sources: Scottish Housing Regulator: <http://www.scottishhousingregulator.gov.uk/> Private Rented Housing Panel: <http://www.prhpscotland.gov.uk/prhp/1.html> Department of Work and Pensions: <http://www.dwp.gov.uk/>

Transferrable Skills

By the end of this module students will have gained competence in the following key areas: Analysis, Synthesis, Critical Judgement and Evaluation The ability to identify issues, assimilate, evaluate and analyse information to construct written or oral solutions to a problem by bringing together and integrating relevant information, and selecting key material, from a variety of different sources. The ability to present arguments for and against propositions, acknowledging ranking of sources and relative impact in context. Such skills are developed within this module through the following activities: -360b7 Solving well defined ( typically hypothetical)problems through essay, seminars and group work. b7 Managing, analysing and rating a large volume of legal sources in essay, exam and seminar work b7 Preparing a detailed assessed presentation involving a variety of legal sources b7 Application of the law and problem-solving in a legal context. Personal Management, Independence and Ability to Learn The ability to organise and prioritise effectively the expenditure of time and effort in the performance of all aspects of student work. The ability to learn effectively and be aware of their own learning strategies; to manage their own learning development and to reflect upon their learning, seeking and making use of feedback. Such skills are developed within this module through the following activities: -360b7 Meeting deadlines for assessment: essay and group presentation b7 Preparing presentation to set time period b7 Preparing analyses of problem questions for weekly seminars b7 Access materials via the GCU Learn site b7 Require students to identify and access primary and secondary source materials. Communication and Literacy The ability to communicate information, ideas, advice and choices in an effective and succinct manner and in plain English without losing focus on key issues. The ability to listen and question effectively, to give and receive feedback and to make presentations addressing an allocated topic within the prescribed time frame. The ability to communicate both orally and in writing (and, where appropriate, by the use of electronic means) using the English language accurately by creating work which is comprehensible to the intended audience. The ability to create documents which are analytical, descriptive and inquisitive using appropriate terminology and recognised methods of citation and reference. Such skills are developed within this module through the following activities: -360b7 Cr eating work in a permanent format which is understandable by the intended audience b7 Create an essay which is analytical, descriptive and inquisitive. b7 Using appropriate legal terminology in all work - answer to seminar questions, exam and presentations b7 Giving face-to-face presentations with seminar leaders which addresses the allocated question within the prescribed time frame. b7 Listening and questioning effectively. b7 Giving and receiving feedback and responding effectively to others within seminar group and in response to presentation b7 Ensuring that all communications (either face-to-face or in permanent form) are succinct without losing focus on key issues or information. b7 Communicating in plain English, with legal terminology only as needed. b7 Contributing effectively to group work in class and assessment b7 Using recognised methods of citation and reference which will be used in coursework b7 Preparing for exam questions. b7 Preparing for seminars b7 Engaging in group work in seminars and for assessed presentation Numeracy, Information, Technology and Teamwork Where relevant and as the basis for an argument, the ability to present and evaluate information provided in numerical or statistical form. The ability to produce and present in an appropriate form a word-processed essay or other appropriate format. The ability to conduct efficient searches of websites to locate relevant information; and exchange documents by E-mail. The ability to work productively and cooperatively in different kinds of groups; to establish working relations with others, defining, sharing and delegating responsibilities within the group. Such skills are developed within this module through the following activities: -360b7 Word processed essays; b7 Presentation using electronic audio-visual materials b7 Use of Internet - general and specific - to research legal materials for seminar, essay and exam preparation b7 Seminar tasks requiring retrieval of information using electronic legal databases eg Westlaw and Governmental websites b7 Communication with module team via e-mail. b7 Participation in seminar discussions b7 Groupwork for assessed presentation

Module Structure

Activity Total Hours
Assessment (FT) 18.00
Independent Learning (FT) 134.00
Tutorials (FT) 12.00
Lectures (FT) 36.00

Assessment Methods

Component Duration Weighting Threshold Description
Coursework 2 n/a 30.00 35% 2000 word essay on Housing Law week 8
Coursework 1 n/a 10.00 35% Group presentation on aspect of Welfare Law (ongoing).
Exam (Exams Office) 2.00 60.00 35% 2 hour exam (3 from 6 questions) 1 seen question. Statutes allowed.