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International Law, Human Rights and Intervention (Module)

Module description


  • Examine issues of international law and human rights by focusing on issues of intervention broadly conceived (including the role of international criminal law, ad hoc tribunals and the ICC).
  • Synthesise, compare, and critically discuss key concepts, academic debates, and approaches to international law and human rights: by examining the practice of a range of states working through the UN Security Council, as well as focusing on institutions such as the International Criminal Court, students will gain an appreciation and understanding of the workings of both international customary law and international criminal law.
  • Compare and contrast different approaches to international law at the global level (including in the UNSC) and how to address the problem of competing understandings of human rights and international law.
  • Identify and evaluate the inter-linkages between international politics, international law, ethics and strategy and how these play out in various areas such as international military intervention, peace support operations, peace-building operations, international judicial mechanisms.
  • Improve analytical, problem-solving and academic skills through engagement with selected readings in whole-class discussion, group tasks, writing assignments and exams. 


  • Be able to identify, analyse and communicate debates, principles and concepts relevant to the expanded role of human rights discourses in international politics as well as in international law.
  • Students will gain an understanding of the inter-linkages between international law and international politics in international society.
  • Be able to identify, through the study of a range of contemporary security issues, the difficulties in applying international law and enforcing human rights norms at the global and domestic levels.
  • Have developed the capacity to generate ideas about the nature of the evolution of international law and human rights discourses in international society and how these affect ideas about intervention, state sovereignty and order, as well as implications for policy.
  • Have acquired specialised analytical, evaluative, and generic problem-solving skills through the judicious application of the various lenses of international law, international politics, strategy and ethics, by comparing and selecting appropriate methods, techniques, criteria and evidence.
  • Act with limited supervision and direction, accepting responsibility for determining and achieving personal and group outcomes and adapting performance accordingly, showing awareness of professional codes of conduct.
  • Have developed autonomous and group learning skills essential for progression to BA3 by undertaking research, both individually and as part of a team, to provide new information through exploring data and identifying significant patterns and relationships.

 *Please note that module information is indicative and may change from year to year.

Staff information

Dr Natasha Kuhrt*

Teaching pattern

Typically, 1 credit equates to 10 hours of work. For a Full Year 30-credit module, this will equate to 40 hours of teaching time (2 hours per week) with 260 hours of self study.

Module assessment - more information

Coursework & Exam*

Key information

Module code 5SSW2063

Credit level 5

Assessment coursework written examination/s

Credit value 30

Semester Full-year

Study abroad module No