Take free human rights courses offered by the United Nations (UN), Amnesty International and top universities. Learn how the United Nations and other human rights organizations tackle the most pressing human rights issues of our time.

Related topics: United Nations | Amnesty International | Humanitarian Law | Diversity and Inclusion | Refugees and Migration | Social Justice | International Law | Peace and Conflict | Sustainable Development | Human Rights

What are Human Rights?

Human Rights are the basic rights that belong to everyone simply because they are human beings. These fundamental rights apply to everyone equally regardless of gender, sex, age, sexual orientation or any other status. First established through the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) in 1948, today human rights are codified in legally binding covenants such as the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Human Rights are enforced by international courts such as the European Court of Human Rights or the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. States have the obligation to respect, protect and fulfil human rights but many fail to live up to their obligations.

Human Rights Courses

On this page we compiled a list of free quality human rights courses offered by the United Nations, Non-governmental Organisations and world-class universities. The list contains both, introductory level courses and advanced courses on specific human rights issues. Learn about the laws that govern the international human rights regime, the tools and tactics of human rights activists and the mechanisms in place to tackle the most pressing human rights issues of our time.

All courses in our list are available for free. You may choose to opt-in for a paid verified certificate issued and accredited by the course providers that include Harvard University, Columbia University, UNICEF, Amnesty International among others. The courses are designed to be as accessible as possible including for people with special needs.

Most of the human rights courses listed on this page are self-paced. You can enrol yourself anytime, anywhere it suits you and start with your learning experience instantly.

Recommended Courses

Child Protection: Children’s Rights in Theory and Practice
Harvard University
Learn how to protect children from violence, exploitation, and neglect through law, policy, and practice in a human rights framework.
International Women’s Health and Human Rights
Stanford University
Learn about women’s rights and human rights from infancy through old age, including about positive interventions relating to those issues.
Human Rights: The Rights of Refugees
Amnesty International
Learn about the human rights of refugees and explore what you can do to protect them.
Social Norms, Social Change I
Learn how to make the distinction between social norms and social constructs, like customs or conventions.
International Human Rights Law
Université catholique de Louvain
Learn how an individual’s human rights are protected from both public and private power by international laws.
Digital Security and Human Rights
Amnesty International
Learn how human rights defenders protect themselves and others against digital threats. Equip yourself with the tools and tactics to defend human rights in the digital world.
Global Diplomacy: the United Nations in the World
SOAS University of London
Learn about the key functions of the United Nations and develop analysis, policy and communication skills.
International Humanitarian Law
University Leiden
Learn about the laws that govern war and armed conflict and how international humanitarian law protects civilians and vulnerable groups against war crimes.

Frequently asked questions

How can i register?
The registration is not difficult. First you choose the course you would like to take. Click on the title or picture of the course. You will be redirected to a more detailed description of the course. On the course description page you will find a blue button to register. Once you clicked the button you will be redirected to the official page of the course provider. Depending on the platform the button will say “Enroll now”, “Join now” or a similar statement. Fill in the requested details and you are ready to start the course.

Are the courses really free?
All course contents are available for free. You can additionally choose to obtain a verified certificate issued by the course provider such as Harvard University, UNICEF or Amnesty International. You can add the certificate to your CV or resume.

How much is a certificate?
The fee for the certificate varies between $25 for short courses and $900 for a micromasters. The most common price for a certificate is between $49 and $99 USD. Financial aid is available for those who qualify through the hosting platforms. Please note that the procession of the application for financial aid may take several weeks to process.