RE2PLP-Planning Law and Practice

Module Provider: Real Estate and Planning
Number of credits: 20 [10 ECTS credits]
Terms in which taught: Autumn / Spring term module
Non-modular pre-requisites:
Modules excluded:
Current from: 2021/2

Module Convenor: Dr Christopher Maidment

Type of module:

Summary module description:


This module explores the operation of the UK planning system in practice, and its inter-relationship with real estate development processes. It examines the role and implementation of policy and strategy, through a range of powers, resources and special organisational arrangements. It also provides an introduction to the legal principles underpinning policy implementation, using case studies and case law to illustrate the issues involved.

This module is delivered at the University of Reading and University of Reading Malaysia.


The module aims to provide students with a critical understanding of the main legal principles which apply to planning law, and the planning powers, resources and special organisational arrangements used to regulate, mediate and facilitate the management and development of land. 

Assessable learning outcomes:

By the end of the module it is expected that students will be able to: 

  • identify the nature, use, strengths and weaknesses of various implementation tools used to implement planning policies; 

  • evaluate the distributional impacts of planning practice; 

  • analyse policy implementation using case study materials; 

  • describe and use the key legal principles involved in planning pr actice; and 

  • identify and use relevant case law. 

Additional outcomes:

  • Through the participation in online tutorials, students will develop web-based learning skills. 

  • Through participation in seminars, students will develop critical-thinking skills

Outline content:

The module content will typically cover the following areas: ?

  • The Role of the Planning & Development Professional 

  • Meaning and Nature of Development

  • Role of Policy, Strategy and Plan-making

  • Design and Mapping in the Planning System

  • Housing Policy and Practice 

  • Development Management and Decision Making 

  • Sustainability and Environmental Impac t Assessment 

  • Planning for Town and City Centres

  • Urban Regeneration in Practice 

  • Rural Policy & Planning Practice 

  • Heritage Conservation and Green Belt Policy 

  • Challenging Planning Decisions

  • Future Trends and Themes in Planning

Global context:

The module focuses on UK planning law and practice but introduces students to the general principles of planning policy implementation and the impact of supra-national legal and policy initiatives. 

Brief description of teaching and learning methods:

The module will be delivered through a mixture of lectures, seminars and online tutorials. 

Contact hours:
  Autumn Spring Summer
Lectures 12 11
Seminars 8 7
Tutorials 1 1
Guided independent study:      
    Completion of formative assessment tasks 2 2
    Revision and preparation 35 35
    Essay preparation 86
Total hours by term 109 56 35
Total hours for module 200

Summative Assessment Methods:
Method Percentage
Written exam 50
Written assignment including essay 50

Summative assessment- Examinations:

One two-hour examination 

Summative assessment- Coursework and in-class tests:

One 2500-word essay submitted in Week 3 of the Spring Term (Timetabling Week 22)

Formative assessment methods:

Two on-line exercises: 

  • Autumn Term: Preparation for the module essay 

  • Spring Term: Practice for the module exam

Penalties for late submission:

The Support Centres will apply the following penalties for work submitted late:

  • where the piece of work is submitted after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): 10% of the total marks available for that piece of work will be deducted from the mark for each working day (or part thereof) following the deadline up to a total of five working days;
  • where the piece of work is submitted more than five working days after the original deadline (or any formally agreed extension to the deadline): a mark of zero will be recorded.
The University policy statement on penalties for late submission can be found at:
You are strongly advised to ensure that coursework is submitted by the relevant deadline. You should note that it is advisable to submit work in an unfinished state rather than to fail to submit any work.

Assessment requirements for a pass:
A mark of at least 40% overall.

Reassessment arrangements:
Re-assessment will be by the same method as the module’s original requirement, subject to variation by the Examination Board where appropriate.

Additional Costs (specified where applicable):

Required text books - £100

Last updated: 8 April 2021


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