LLM in Human Rights and Criminal Justice

This Masters course is designed for those with an academic and / or professional interest in postgraduate studies in all areas of Human Rights law, equality, and conflict. Within the School of Law, human rights research and teaching on the LLM degree has been carried out under the auspices of the Human Rights Centre since 1990. Within the field of criminology and criminal justice, teaching on the LLM and research is carried out under the auspices of the  Institute of Criminology and Criminal Justice, established in 1995.

The School’s postgraduate LLM programme in human rights and criminal justice is an exciting and rewarding degree course which attracts a diverse student body, including international students, students who are qualified legal practitioners and students with extensive experience in the statutory, community or voluntary sectors. The teachers on the course have experience of working for the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission, the United Nations Working Group on Minorities; Northern Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young Persons, the Inter American Court of Human Rights, the Parliamentary Joint Committee on Human Rights, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, the Council of Europe and Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe, the International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia, the Women in Politics programme and the Geneva based Centre on Housing Rights and Evictions, amongst others. This diversity among both staff and students allows the students and teachers on the course to learn from each other and makes for a vibrant academic experience.

1 year full-time / 2 years part-time

A number of activities are organised for postgraduate Human Rights Students, see further details of Activities for LLM Human Rights Students.

Entrance Requirements 
Normally a 2:1 Honours degree or above or equivalent recognised qualification in Law, Social Sciences, Humanities or a cognate discipline.

Organisation of the LLM Programme 
The programme is offered on a modular basis. It may be completed in one year on a full-time basis or two years on a part-time basis. To complete the degree, students must have successfully passed courses amounting to 180 credits. Students wishing to complete the LLM in Human Rights and Criminal Justice are required to take compulsory modules in:

Human Rights: Concepts and Institutions (30 credits)
Criminal Justice Processes (30 credits) or Theory & Practice Criminology (30 credits)

Students must also complete a dissertation (60 credits) of between 15,000 and 20,000 words on an approved topic in either a Human Rights field or a Criminology/Criminal Justice field.

To make up their remaining 60 credits they must choose from the following elective modules. including:

30 credits from:

  • A Social History of Criminal Justice (15 credits)
  • Restorative Justice (15 credits)
  • Comparative Youth Justice (15 credits)
  • Penal Policies and Practice (15 credits)
  • Psychological Aspects of Crime (15 credits)
  • War, Crime and Criminology (15 credits)
  • Sentencing and the Criminal Justice System (15 credits)
  • Transitional Justice and Conflict Transformation (15 credits)
  • Policing (15 credits)
  • Race and Criminal Justice (15 credits)
  • Punishment and Social Control (15 credits)
  • Crime Prevention and Community Safety (15 credits)

30 credits from:

Human Rights in Time of Conflict (15 Credits)

  • Rights of the Child (15 credits)
  • Rights of Women (15 credits)
  • Human Rights in the Americas (15 credits)
  • Religion and Law (15 credits)
  • Economic and Social Rights (15 credits)
  • International Protection of Refugees (15 credits)
  • Trafficking and Human Rights (15 credits)
  • Human Rights and the Environment (15 credits)

For further information on module content please see the course handbook.

Please note that optional modules are subject to variation from year to year as the aim of the School is to provide research-led teaching.

All modules are primarily assessed by way of an essay. For 30 credit modules this will normally be an essay of up to 6000 words, for 15 credit modules this will be generally an essay of up to 3000 words.  Students must also complete a dissertation (60 credits) of between 15,000 and 20,000 words on an approved topic.

Closing Date for Applications 
Applications, via the online portal, will be accepted up to end August.  After this date, please contact the School Postgraduate Secretary (pglawenquiries@qub.ac.uk)

Programme coordinator: Professor Brice Dickson

Some funding opportunities exist for Taught Masters programmes