International Human Rights Law

Course code LAWS5014Units 10Level 5000Faculty of Business and LawNewcastle Law School

This course is designed to expose students to the laws which deal with the protection of individuals and groups against violations by governments of certain internationally guaranteed human rights.

Available in 2015

Callaghan CampusSemester 1
Newcastle City PrecinctSemester 1
Previously offered in 2014
ObjectivesBy the end of this course, students should:

1. Gain an understanding of some of the complex theoretical, political and socio-economic issues associated with human rights discourse;
2. Become familiar with the structures and processes through which international human rights norms are established and transformed into rights;
3. Understand the relationship of international human rights norms to the Australian legal system;
4. Understand the specific techniques for the implementation of human rights on the domestic and international plane;
5. Become familiar with the particular contemporary issues in human rights such as Indigenous Peoples as well as Globalization, Development and Climate Change.
Content1. Introduction to the Themes of the Course- Background to the International Human Rights Movement.
2. Relevant United Nations Treaties (ICCPR & ICESCR).
3. National Security, Terrorism and Limitations on Human Rights.
4. United Nations Investigation of Human Rights Violations.
5. United Nations Treaty Bodies: The ICCPR Human Rights Committee.
6. Enforcement Mechanisms and Humanitarian Intervention.
7. State Enforcement of International Human Rights including Australia.
8. Interaction between evolving norms of universal human rights and domestic laws.
9. Conflicting Traditions and Rights: Gender, Religion, Dress and Symbols, Immigration and Multiculturalism and Freedom of Speech.
10. Current Topics: Massive Human Rights Tragedies: Prosecutions and Truth Commissions.
11. Current Topics: Non-State Actors (eg. transnational corporations) and Human Rights.
12. Human Rights, Development and Climate Change.
13. Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender Rights
Replacing Course(s)NA
Industrial Experience0
Assumed KnowledgeLAWS1001A, LAWS1001B, LAWS1002A, LAWS1002B, LAWS2003A, LAWS2003B, LAWS3004A, LAWS3004B, LAWS3005, LAWS4001.
Modes of DeliveryInternal Mode
Teaching MethodsSeminar
Assessment Items
Other: (please specify)Research Paper -
Students will be required to prepare an original research paper on a topic they have selected in consultation with the course convenor. The paper must be 2,500 words in length.
Presentations - ClassReading Presentation -
Each Student will present one of the assigned readings to the class and facilitate discussion of that reading. Students will also submit a 1500-2000 word written summary of their presentation. The final mark for the reading presentation will reflect the student's performance on both the oral presentation and the written submission.
Contact HoursSeminar: for 3 hour(s) per Week for Full Term
Compulsory Components
Requisite by EnrolmentThis course is only available to students enrolled in the Bachelor of Laws and associated combined degree programs or the Bachelor of Laws (Honours) and associated combined degree programs.
Timetables2015 Course Timetables for LAWS5014