LLM International Human Rights
University College Dublin
Full time, Part time
EUR 21,520 / per year *
Earliest start date
* full time non-EU fee per year - € 21520; EU fee per year - € 10170 | part time non-EU fee per year - € 10760; EU fee per year - € 5090
On this programme you will acquire specialised and in-depth knowledge and understanding of international human rights law, political theory of rights and international relations relating to human rights. The programme is interdisciplinary thus building on the strengths in this area of the Sutherland School of Law and the School of Politics and International Relations. Members of staff in the Sutherland School of Law have engaged in major research in this area spanning the full range of international human rights law from asylum law and practice, the EU and fundamental rights to the law of privacy in Ireland.
- To understand and think critically about the intersections between law, politics and international relations that come to the fore in the study of human rights
- To apply their knowledge and understanding of human rights law, political theory and international relations to real and hypothetical factual situations
- To conduct independent research and write coherent, well-structured papers.
The Sutherland School of Law offers a wide range of modules for the Masters programmes. Modules of especial interest to those undertaking this programme include:
International Human Rights will consider the theoretical underpinnings and development of contemporary international human rights law. It will critically examine the institutional architecture developed by the UN system and regional systems to implement human rights norms as well as national methods of implementation of human rights law. The course will also consider key themes and challenges facing those systems in securing effective protection of human rights.
Law of the ECHR involves a critical examination of key aspects of the operation and substantive law of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). In particular this course focuses on the incorporation of the ECHR into domestic law; the individual-complaint procedure and the operation of the European Court of Human Rights; methods of interpretation by the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR); as well as in-depth analysis and critical evaluation of the ECtHR’s jurisprudence across a representative selection of rights in the ECHR.
Theory of Human Rights: Human rights play a peculiar role in contemporary national and international affairs. They are, first and foremost, moral rights that all human beings should be guaranteed, but they also require implementation in positive law and institutions. This module will examine some of the most prominent theories of rights and examine some of the problems that arise from human rights talk and human rights implementation. These include various challenges to the idea of human rights, conflicts between rights, human rights and democracy and the relation between human rights and distributive justice.
Politics of Human Rights: By examining recent political science scholarship on human rights, this module will facilitate understanding of how human rights norms spread and what effects they have on state behavior. After a brief theoretical and historical overview of international human rights, the course will turn to perspectives that seek to explain how and under what conditions human rights norms would be expected to influence state conduct. Topics covered include the role of transnational activist networks, legalization and legal norms, transitional justice, trade and economic sanctions, and the role of domestic institutions.
Vision and Values Statement
The programme gives students, who already hold an undergraduate law degree or have practised law for a significant period, specialised and in-depth knowledge and understanding of international human rights law, political theory of rights and international relations relating to human rights. It qualifies student to work in the human rights field in Ireland or abroad, as lawyers, policy-makers, advocates, researchers or academics. Career opportunities exist in intergovernmental organisations, government departments, international and domestic non-governmental organisations and in law firms.
Students are challenged to understand and think critically about the intersections between law, politics and international relations that come to the fore in the study of human rights. The understanding thereby acquired is also relevant to their contribution as citizens in an increasingly wide range of areas.
We strive for a learning environment that encourages students to work individually or as part of a team, so that they can develop their own and others' leadership, teamwork and communication skills, with a special emphasis on the applicability of these in the practise of international human rights law.
To these ends, the programme makes intensive use of teaching, learning and assessment approaches such as small-group teaching, in-class presentation (individual and group) and academic writing. A 30 credit dissertation on a topic devised by the student is an integral part of the programme.
Who should apply?
Full Time option suitable for:
- Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
- International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. Yes
Part Time option suitable for:
- Domestic(EEA) applicants: Yes
- International (Non EEA) applicants currently residing outside of the EEA Region. No
Scholarships and Funding
Please note that UCD offers a number of graduate scholarships for full-time, self-funding international students, holding an offer of a place on a UCD graduate degree program.
Stage 1 - Core
- Human Rights Law and Equality EQUL40070
- Dissertation LAW40290
- Law of the ECH RLAW40780
- Politics of Human Rights POL41020
- Theory of Human Rights POL41030
Stage 1 - Option
- Gender, Conflict-related Harm & Transitional Justice GS40100
- International Competition Law LAW40150
- Punishment, Prisons & Public Policy LAW40620
- NGOs: Law, Governance and Social Change LAW40760
- Law and Governance of the EU LAW41040
- Coercive Confinement LAW41050
- Climate Change Law and Policy LAW41090
- Online Regulation LAW41150
- Data Protection and Privacy: National and International Perspectives LAW41270
- International Tax Law LAW41450
- White Collar Crime LAW41500
- Financial Regulation LAW42010
- Law of Armed Conflict LAW42020
- Culture, Heritage and Human Rights LAW42040
- United Nations Human Rights Practice LAW42130
- Politics of Development POL40100
- Advanced Disability Studies PSY40640
- Disability Policy Legislation PSY40890
- apply their knowledge and understanding of international human rights law, political theory and international relations and their problem-solving abilities in diverse environments.
- demonstrate specialised knowledge and understanding of domestic, European and International Human Rights Law, political theory of rights and international relations relating to human rights.
- have the intellectual toolkit required to research and write a major dissertation.
- integrate source material from a variety of disciplinary areas to reach reasoned decisions about the relative status of competing claims to knowledge.
- unpack complex legal and theoretical arguments and to render intelligible to a non-specialist audience, key disciplinary insights.
- use knowledge of substantive law and theory to critique arguments as to whether and how the law in this field is in need of reform.
Program Tuition Fee
The programme qualifies you to work in the field of human rights, either internationally or in Ireland, as a practising lawyer, legal adviser, policy-maker, advocate, researcher or academic. Career opportunities exist in inter-governmental organisations (United Nations, Council of Europe, European Union, Organisation for Cooperation and Security in Europe), government departments, international and domestic nongovernmental organisations, and law firms including McCann FitzGerald and Allen & Overy.
Several UCD careers events are held throughout the year, including dedicated law careers fairs which are attended by top employers. For specific careers advice, the UCD Sutherland School of Law has a dedicated careers advisor on its academic faculty.