Teaching has a strong practical orientation and includes experiential learning and skill-building components in order to develop skills indispensable for successful human rights practitioners (such as negotiation, drafting, advocacy and presentation skills). Rigorous and closely monitored coursework provides the tools of advocacy, analysis, critical reading and writing necessary to enable students to make a significant and lasting contribution both to rights protection in their home countries and to the enforcement of human rights at large. Courses prepare students to explore human rights issues across legal systems, to engage in advanced critical thinking, and to refine their arguments in oral interactions and group work. Classes are highly interactive, enabling students to benefit from the international composition of the student body; in-class discussions allow insight into contemporary developments as they evolve, enabling critical engagement with these developments in a manner that is sensitive to the multi- cultural composition of our academic community. Individual research skills are developed through problem-driven papers written for various courses, as well as in the final thesis or capstone thesis. Several courses offer first-hand experience for students in human rights advocacy and immersions to the work of civil society organizations, which remain unique assets of the Program. Students are encouraged to address practical human rights problems through comparative analysis, using a theoretic framework informed by inter-disciplinary insight. As a result, our graduates, with their advanced analytical skills which draw on critical inter-disciplinary analysis, are capable of responding effectively to human rights challenges with policy-relevant proposals.
Entry Requirements for the MA in Human Rights
In exceptional cases, applicants with a three-year bachelor’s degree may be allowed admission into one-year master’s programs. The applicants should be aware that they may not be able to pursue a doctoral degree in the European Higher Education Area if they have accumulated less than 300 ECTS credits in their prior university studies. Applicants wishing to pursue an academic career should choose their master’s program accordingly (two-year master’s in case they completed a three-year bachelor’s degree, and one-year master’s in case they completed a four-year bachelor’s degree). For the list of conditions under which exemptions may be granted, please refer to the program’s website.
At the end of the course students will be equipped with
- a substantial understanding of the institutional and procedural frameworks of human rights enforcement in major jurisdictions
- considerable knowledge of the protection of particular human rights on national and supranational levels
- a critical appreciation of the nature, efficacy and theoretical foundations of the international human rights regime
- the ability to generate new ideas and advocacy strategies that provide genuine solutions to complex human rights problems using comparative arguments and interdisciplinary insight
- the capacity to analyze human rights issues in a policy-relevant manner
- the skills to envision a human rights-based approach to addressing diverse legal, regulatory and policy problems