Page last updated at 18:06 GMT, Sunday, 1 November 2009
Member of the Scottish Parliament

Members of the Scottish Parliament are called MSPs.

Each voter in a Scottish election has two votes, a constituency vote and a regional vote.

Scotland is made up of 73 Scottish Parliamentary first-part-the post constituencies and eight regional constituencies.

An MSP elected by the first-past-the-post system is called a constituency MSP. This results in 73 constituency MSPs.

Each of the eight regional constituencies returns seven MSPs using the d'Hondt systemof proportional representation.

This results in 56 regional MSPs representing a region of Scotland rather than a single constituency.

In all, 129 MSPs are elected to the Scottish Parliament.

MSPs may take on ministerial roles if their party has a majority or is part of a coalition which has a majority.

Other MSPs hold the Scottish Government to account in Holyrood's plenary sessions on Wednesday afternoons and all day on a Thursday.

They may also join committees, where they scrutinise new legislation or conduct inquiries into issues which fall within their remit.

Committees can also propose new legislation in the form of a committee bill.

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