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LLM International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law

Course Description

The University of Essex is one of the UK's leading academic institutions, ranked ninth nationally for research excellence following the most recent Research Assessment Exercise (RAE, December 2008).

Our School of Law has an international reputation for research and a commitment to providing legal education of the highest quality, with our students coming from many different backgrounds. One of the striking features of law at Essex is our international flavour, evidenced in our student intake, the experience of our staff, and our strengths in areas such as international human rights law, international trade law and the law of the EU.

This LLM builds on the success of our long-established LLM International Human Rights Law, and our expertise with respect to the protection of human rights in situations of acute crisis. You critically examine how international law protects individuals in such situations, with core modules exploring the rules of general public international law most relevant to the study of human rights, humanitarian law and international peacekeeping, together with the international machinery for the protection of human rights, the international law of armed conflict and international refugee law.

Our LLM International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law should appeal if you looking to work with humanitarian organisations in the field or have experience and want to examine the legal aspects of your work in more detail. It would be of interest if you are a member of the military seeking to broaden your understanding of the international law pertaining to peacekeeping and other types of military operation, or a member of governments or international organisations responsible for establishing peacekeeping or other humanitarian operations.

Visit the LLM International Human Rights and Humanitarian Law page on the University of Essex website for more details!

(Student Profile)

Luciana Ramsay

“The School of Law at the University of Essex was recommended to me by an alumnus as the best in the field of human rights law. I had always wanted to further my knowledge in law and international human rights law is a very dynamic and growing area, so the School of Law’s LLM International Human Rights Law appealed to me. Moreover, as a former Clerk of the Court (Prosecutor) I have always been drawn to incorporating human rights issues into that line of work.

Essex has a great human rights programme that balances academic work with practical work. There are seminars and workshops geared towards enhancing our skills in human rights and students have the opportunity to become involved in human rights projects from across the world to get hands on experience. As such I enjoy the balance that has been created for the students, especially where most of us have never worked in the field from a practical point of view. In relation to the academic aspect, the course outlines are readily available online, the reading materials are given and time is not wasted trying to collate information at the library as it is made easily accessible online. Moreover our lecturers are renowned and well respected in the field, several are highly active as a result of their appointments at the United Nations in high profile positions, yet easily accessible when you need them.

In addition, I enjoy the global feel that my class has as I am studying with people from varied backgrounds; there is a former magistrate, several attorneys from different fields, to name just a few. This means I learn something new every day whether legal, social or otherwise from these persons, as well as being able to network with persons from parts of the world I have only heard of.

When I finish my LLM I will be returning to Jamaica to my job.”

(Student Profile)

Cicek Gockun

"I studied political science and international relations at university in Istanbul and found human rights to be the area that interested me most. I knew Essex was the best university to study this subject further, with a worldwide reputation for its academic staff in the School of Law and the very well respected Human Rights Centre.

Two elements of my LLM International Human Rights Law were invaluable. Firstly, the quality and enthusiasm of my teaching staff who are always friendly and helpful, and secondly the diversity on my course, with students from all over the world and varying age ranges. Combining young students and professionals was an important aspect of my course which opened my eyes to different facts on the world and allowed me to empathise and work more successfully in my field.

I found there were always interesting projects and research going on at Essex, with academic staff happy to involve current student. In addition, the University has numerous student societies to join and quite a few are focused on human rights (Human Rights Society, STAR, Student for Free Tibet and Model United Nations Essex) which allowed me to go beyond my reading and writing to gain practical experience.

Since graduating, I have taken a job at the Human Rights Centre here, as Student Activities Officer, so have been coordinating student support events such as field trips to Europe and Kosovo, student conferences on human rights in Asia and in Africa, and other extracurricular activities.

My LLM gave me new experiences and ideas which I never thought of before. It also ensured I have the right research skills and academic discipline to consider undertaking a PhD in the future."


Entry Requirements

2.1 or above in appropriate discipline and/or substantial practical experience in a related field; IELTS 6.5.

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