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International Human Rights Law (LLM / PGDip)

Course Description

The LLM in International Human Rights Law offers the opportunity to gain a critical understanding of the history and theoretical underpinnings of international human rights, international and regional human rights systems, and the practical application of human rights norms in a range of contexts.

This course combines rigorous legal education with a contemporary and global perspective and is ideally suited to students from a law, history, politics, or other social sciences background.

It is designed to provide the specialist skills and in-depth knowledge that will be attractive to employers in the areas of international legal practice and international development as well as those who intend to pursue careers in international governmental and non-governmental organisations.

See the website http://www.brookes.ac.uk/courses/postgraduate/llm-in-international-human-rights-law/

Why choose this course?

- It enables you to specialise in areas such as international criminal law, the laws of armed conflict, humanitarian intervention and post-conflict reconstruction, international development and globalisation, refugee and migrant law, and the promotion and application of human rights as part of legal reform in the developing world.

- It is ideal for those who intend to pursue careers in international governmental and non-governmental organisations, as well as in government and academic posts. Recent graduates from this course have gained positions in international organisations, such as UNICEF.

- You can enhance your CV and career prospects by developing specialisations that go beyond the standard human rights law subjects of a LLB or other law degree.

- Your course tutors, fellow students and alumni are drawn from countries around the world giving you the opportunity to build a truly international network of contacts.

- All members of the LLM course team are active researchers and encourage students to become involved in their respective areas of research by teaching specialist modules in which they have expertise and by supervising dissertations in their specialist subjects.

- Special support is provided for international students, particularly those whose first language is not English, to ensure that they find their feet quickly and are able to participate fully.

- The 2015 Times/ Sunday Times Good University Guide places the School of Law at Oxford Brookes in the top 30 of all the UK’s university Law Schools.

- You will benefit from a range of teaching and learning strategies, from case studies to interactive seminars, presentations and moots.

- Oxford has much to offer lawyers and as one of the world's great academic cities, it is a key centre of debate, with conferences, seminars and forums taking place across a range of international law topics within the University, the city of Oxford and in nearby London.

Teaching and learning

A wide diversity of teaching methods are employed throughout the LLM courses in order to provide a high-quality learning experience. These include lectures, seminar discussions, individual and small group tutorials, case studies, and group and individual presentations.

Particular emphasis is placed on skills training, with opportunities provided to acquire and practice legal reasoning as well as research and IT skills. Assessment methods include coursework and individual and group presentations.

All the members of the LLM course team are active researchers and encourage students to become involved in their respective areas of research by teaching specialist modules in which they have expertise and by supervising dissertations in their specialist subjects.


Graduates from the LLM succeed across an impressive range of careers from policy makers and human rights activists through to high flying diplomats and commercial lawyers. LLM staff can advise you and direct you to possible careers and employers depending on your particular needs and ambitions.

"I have joined a corporate law team at a leading multinational law firm in Beijing, thanks to my LLM."
- LLM Alumna, Lin Zheng

- Pursuing an academic career in law
Research is fundamental to the Law School - one of the reasons we performed so well in the latest REF. Your own interests will be reflected in the modules you choose and many students feel moved to continue their academic studies and become specialists themselves. Several former LLM students have chosen to become researchers, publishing and lecturing on their work and graduating to do a PhD.

"The grounding that I now have in international law has allowed me to take on work that I would not previously have been qualified for. For example, I am currently developing a programme of litigation on the issue of counter-terrorism and human rights for an international organisation. I have lectured at Harvard Law School and been invited to contribute to an edited volume produced by Harvard."
- LLM Alumnus Richard Carver, Associate Lecturer and Human Rights Consultant

Free language courses for students - the Open Module

Free language courses are available to full-time undergraduate and postgraduate students on many of our courses, and can be taken as a credit on some courses.

Please note that the free language courses are not available if you are:
- studying at a Brookes partner college
- studying on any of our teacher education courses or postgraduate education courses.

Research highlights

Professor Peter Edge researches in the interaction of religion and law, and the law of small jurisdictions including International Finance Centres. Recent projects exploring these at the transnational level have included a study of foreign lawyers working in small jurisdictions, and a comparative study of the status of ministers of religion in employment law. Past PhD students have worked on projects such as a comparison of the European Convention on Human Rights and Shariah, and a comparative study of how criminal law treats religion.

Professor Lucy Vickers’ research into the religious discrimination at work has led to consultancy work for Equality and Human Rights Commission, as well invitations to speak at United Nations with the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion and Belief.

Sonia Morano-Foadi, interviewed and quoted in The Economist, secured £12,000 from the European Science Foundation to fund exploratory work into the effects of EU directives on migration and asylum.

Professor Ilona Cheyne has been invited to participate in the EU COST group on 'Fragmentation, Politicisation and Constitutionalisation of International Law', working on standards of review in international courts and tribunals.

Research areas and clusters

Oxford Brookes academics are at the forefront of a wide range of internationally recognised and world-leading research and projects. In the 2014 REF 96% of the School of Law’s research was internationally recognised. The LLM course team consists of researchers working within the International Law and Fundamental Rights and Equality research groups. LLM students can attend the programmes of research seminars and other events that underpin the research culture of the School of Law.

Visit the International Human Rights Law (LLM / PGDip) page on the Oxford Brookes University website for more details!

Entry Requirements

Students will normally be required to have (or to be expecting) a good honours degree, or an equivalent degree awarded by a university outside the United Kingdom. The degree may be in Law or in a related discipline. We welcome applications from both non-Law graduates and work experience-based candidates. If you are new to the academic study of law you will be advised to read a number of recommended texts by way of induction before the course begins. You are also encouraged to attend the induction sessions provided in the week prior to the beginning of the course.

Course Fees

Home / EU: Full-time £6,520, Part-time £3,330; International: Full-time £13,100

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