Law and Cultural Institutions INFOSTUD5017

  • Academic Session: 2019-20
  • School: School of Humanities
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 5 (SCQF level 11)
  • Typically Offered: Either Semester 1 or Semester 2
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes
  • Available to Erasmus Students: No

Short Description

This course provides students with an understanding of the various ways in which the law regulates and shapes the work of cultural institutions, such as archives, libraries, museums and galleries. The course will focus primarily on copyright, data protection, freedom of information, open data and the re-use of public sector information within a national and European context.


2 hour seminar per week x 10 weeks

Requirements of Entry

Standard entry to Masters at College level

Excluded Courses





Essay (2,500 words) - 50%

Essay (2,500 words) - 50%

Course Aims

This course aims to:


■ Enable students to develop analytical and critical skills by detailed examination of the relevant legislation, conventions and case law;

■ Enable students to develop oral communication skills through the use of both staff-led and student-led

■ Provide students with an understanding of some of the practical applications of the law as it impacts the work of cultural institutions;

■ Provide students with an understanding of areas of controversy and current legal debates within this domain;

■ Enable students to develop independent learning skills.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:


■ critically appraise the nature, relevance and scope of relevant UK law as it relates to cultural institutions;

■ identify the aims and principles underpinning the legal regime as it impacts the work of cultural institutions;

■ identify, contextualise and evaluate new developments in this field;

■ differentiate between legal norms shaping the work of cultural institutions within the pre-digital era, and the adaptation and development of those norms within the digital environment;

■ evaluate and criticise constructively these approaches, and their limitations, with reference to the interests of cultural institutions and their users;

■ establish a critical awareness of the EU and international context within which the law is developing in this domain.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.