Faculty of Education, Social Sciences and Law

School of Law

LLM International and European Human Rights Law

This advanced course in human rights taught by international experts offers a unique and distinctive focus on the theories and practice of rights, producing a vibrant environment for exploring this significant area of law and policy.

This programme will give you advanced knowledge, greater understanding and critical insights into current systems of human rights legal protection and human rights debates.

You’ll explore different domestic, regional and international human rights legal systems to analyse how rights have been legalised, developed and enforced through the theory and practice of human rights.

You’ll investigate the law relating to the protection of life and human dignity, freedom from torture and other ill treatment, freedom of expression, and human rights with regard to media organisations, terrorism, health care, the family and disabled people.

You’ll benefit from the expertise of leading academics in a stimulating research environment. Our research groups include:

The compulsory modules studied will give you the opportunity to:

  • examine the concept of rights in political philosophy
  • explore global and local human rights concerns
  • investigate the impact of international human rights
  • analyse the relevance of international human rights to domestic law.

Compulsory modules will also enable you to hone your legal research and writing skills, which you’ll be able to demonstrate in your dissertation – an independent piece of research on your chosen topic.

If you study with us, you’ll also benefit from our academic skills programme. This 10-week programme runs alongside your taught academic programme, and is specifically designed to meet the needs of home and international students in the School of Law. It allows you to refine and develop the academic and transferable skills to excel during your taught postgraduate programmes, as well as prepare for professional roles after graduation.

The wide-ranging list of optional modules means that you can explore a diverse range of related subjects of interest to you.

If you’re a part-time student, you’ll take three compulsory modules and choose one or two optional modules in your first year. You’ll then take the compulsory dissertation module and one or two optional modules in your second year to complete your programme.

Course structure

These are typical modules/components studied and may change from time to time. Read more in our Terms and conditions.

As a full-time student you’ll study four compulsory modules – including your dissertation – and up to a further four optional modules.

Compulsory modulesOptional modules
- European Human Rights
- International Human Rights
- Postgraduate Legal Research Skills
- Dissertation
- Global Governance through Law
- Central Issues in Criminal Law
- Policing I: The Nature of Contemporary Policing
- Policing II: Accountability of Policing
- International Human Rights and Disabled People
- Security and Justice
- Cyberlaw: Regulation of Cyberspace
- Globalisation and Crime
- International Banking Law: The Regulatory Framework
- International Banking Law: Capital Markets and Loans
- The International Law of Foreign Investment
- World Trade Organisation Law
- Digital Environment: Law, Technologies and Human Rights
- Contemporary Issues in Intellectual Property: Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Cultural Expressions
- Contemporary Issues in Intellectual Property: Health, Food and Biotechnology

Learning and teaching

This programme is taught through a range of weekly lectures and seminars held on a two-weekly basis. You’re strongly advised to attend the weekly lectures on international human rights and international law, particularly if you’ve not previously studied international law.

Independent study is integral to this programme – not just to prepare for classes but to develop research and other critical skills. You’ll be expected to carry out advanced levels of legal research and participate fully in seminars.


Most modules are assessed by essays. This is usually the most effective method for you to showcase your advanced legal research.

Entry requirements

A bachelor degree with a 2:1 (hons) in law or a relevant social science or non-UK equivalent.

We accept a range of international equivalent qualifications. For more information contact the School of Law admissions team.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5 overall, with no less than 6.0 in any component. For other English qualifications, read English language equivalent qualifications.

International students who do not meet the English language requirements for the programme may be able to study an English for Academic Purposes pre-sessional course with a progression route to the degree programme. For information and entry requirements, read Pre-sessional programmes.

How to apply

Application deadlines

UK/EU students: 31 July

International students: 30 June

This link takes you to information on applying for taught programmes and to the University's online application system.
If you're unsure about the application process, contact the admissions team for help.

Documents and information you’ll need

A copy of your degree certificate or equivalent, as well as a copy of the transcript of your grades (or partial transcript if you’re still studying) certified by the awarding institution

Two academic references

Evidence of your English language qualifications, if English isn’t your first language.


The School of Law doesn’t typically interview applicants. However, in certain circumstances programme leaders may require some form of written assignment from you to show that you have the necessary skills for Masters study. Additionally, you may also be invited for interview as part of the selection procedure. If invited to interview, you’ll receive an email invitation from the School to attend an interview or be interviewed by Skype on a specific date.

Admissions policy

School of Law Taught Postgraduate Admissions Policy


UK/EU: £7,000

International: £15,000

Read more about paying fees and charges.

For fees information for international taught postgraduate students read Masters fees.

Part-time fees are normally calculated based on the number of credits you study in a year compared to the equivalent full-time course. For example, if you study half the course credits in a year, you will pay half the full-time course fees for that year.

Scholarships and financial support

The School of Law is offering a number of Liberty Scholarships to UK/EU and international students of high academic quality starting a postgraduate taught programme in 2016. These scholarships will be awarded on the basis of academic performance in your undergraduate degree. A Liberty Scholarship will not be awarded in addition to any other scholarship except a University of Leeds Alumni Bursary.

Find out more on the School’s scholarships page.

If you have the talent and drive, we want you to be able to study with us, whatever your financial circumstances. There is help for students in the form of loans and non-repayable grants from the University and from the government.  Find out if you can get help at Postgraduate funding.

Career opportunities

Students who have graduated from this degree often choose careers that centre on or involve understanding and applying human rights law and developing policies at organisational level. Further training is required but many also go on to practise as lawyers or legal advisors.

Our alumni include people working at the European Commission, United Nations, non-governmental organisations and in the government sector. Others have chosen to follow academic careers.

Careers support

We encourage you to prepare for your career from day one. That’s one of the reasons Leeds graduates are so sought after by employers.

The Careers Centre and staff in your faculty provide a range of help and advice to help you plan your career and make well-informed decisions along the way, even after you graduate. Find out more at the Careers website.

The School of Law offers career and personal development support through the School of Law Careers Advisor. The School also arranges career development workshops, seminars and one-to-one sessions for students on all postgraduate programmes.

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