The establishment of human rights was a global undertaking. The conversation about how to best protect them still continues to this day and will no doubt never end. If you want to join in the conversation and learn more about human rights on an international level, seek out the best programs around the world. Here are ten international human rights studies for your consideration.
England: Oxford University
Oxford’s Department for Continuing Education and the Faculty of Law come together to offer this degree in international human rights. It takes place over 2 academic years and includes two summer sessions at New College in Oxford and two periods of online distance learning. The programme was especially designed with lawyers and human rights advocates in mind who don’t have time for full-time study. Because Oxford University does not offer a traditional LLM degree, this degree is considered a Master of Studies (MSt), which is the rough equivalent of an LLM but with more assessed work than other LLM International Human Rights Law programmes.
Canada: University of Toronto Faculty of Law
This Master of Laws allows students to focus on areas like international human rights, constitutional law, and legal theory. It’s a full-time academic program intended for both Canadian and international law graduates looking for advanced study and research. It can be taken with more emphasis on a thesis or coursework-only. The concentration in Health Law, Ethics, and Policy includes courses taught by faculty with expertise in human rights law. All LLM candidates participate in the LLM seminar, while all LLM candidates focusing on a thesis participate in Alternative Approaches to Legal Scholarship.
Estonia: University of Tartu
The University of Estonia, the country’s national university, offers a two-year master’s program focusing on principles, subjects, regulations, and practice in international law and human rights. The program’s goal is to provide a comparative perspective on issues related to international law and human rights while considering Estonia’s unique placement between the east and west. The School of Law sponsors the program and past graduates make up a huge portion of the legal system in Estonia. To apply to the university, students must have a bachelor’s degree or an equivalent, with at least 60 ECTS (one year) llaw courses, and English proficiency.
Norway: University of Oslo
This programme focuses on issues related to human rights such as current problems in implementing rights and how to resolve them. Students learn valuable investigative and analytical skills. The degree is intended for both students who’ve recently earned a bachelor’s degree and human rights professionals looking to expand their knowledge. To successfully complete this master’s programme, students must finish nine courses and a written master’s thesis. Five of the courses are mandatory, while students can choose the other four from institutes within the Faculty of Law, other university departments, and the Norwegian Centre for Human Rights.
Sweden: Uppsala University
Humanitarianism occurs naturally from the pursuit of human rights as a reality. At Uppsala University, they offer a Master’s in Humanitarian Action and Conflict. The 1-year programme is directed at those interested in how humanitarianism works, relevant laws, and what constitutes humanitarian emergencies. The goal of the program is to prepare graduates for jobs at NGOs and government organizations in roles such as project manager and conflict analyst. Uppsala University is among the top 100 universities in the world and it’s Sweden’s oldest university.
France: Sciences Po (Paris School of International Affairs)
This master program combines human rights and humanitarian action using various approaches such as philosophy, anthropology, and history. Students learn about international law, global and regional institutions, advocacy, and more. In the second year of the program, students can choose to specialize in either human rights or humanitarian action. Sciences Po is ranked third in the world for policies and international studies.
Netherlands: Leiden University
In this programme, students study both “the law of the books” and “law in action.” This involves studying the various human rights protections on a regional, national, and global stage, as well as how different political and cultural environments impact human rights law. As an advanced L.L.M. programme, candidates will need a full degree in law which allows them to practice in the country where it was received; proven English proficiency; and excellent academic transcripts.
Australia: University of Melbourne Law School
This Master of Human Rights Law programme is intended for both law and non-law graduates. The specialization allows students to explore a wide range of human rights topics, such as human rights theories, practices, institutions, and more. Students will develop an expert knowledge of international and Ausralian legal frameworks for human rights promotion and protection, as well as analytical and judgement skills. It can be completed in one year as a full-time student or within two-four years part-time.
To apply, students must meet certain requirements, such as possessing a degree in law leading to admission to practice, at honours standard; or a degree in law leading to admission to practice and two years of professional experience. Undergrad degrees in relevant fields are also accepted, though with additional requirements.
South Africa: University of the Witwatersrand
This Master of Laws consists of a compulsory course in Human Rights Advocacy and Litigation Law and three elective courses, which include Human Rights and the Marketplace; Refugees Law; International Human Rights Law; and Advanced Administrative Law. The program can be full-time and completed in one year, or part-time within two years. To be accepted, students must have a Bachelor of Laws with an average grade of 70%.
Israel: Hebrew University of Jerusalem
This one-year master’s programme at Israel’s top university focuses on human rights and transitional justice. It’s intended for B.A. graduates in political science, international relations, and other related fields. The program consists of 20-25 academic courses, including courses on international humanitarian law, international courts, the United Nations, international human rights, and more. Applicants must meet English proficiency requirements and provide academic transcripts, a letter of recommendation, CV, and writing sample.
Explore top human rights masters.