Postgraduate Course

LLM Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

LLM Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

Overview

The details
Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
October 2022
Full-time
1 year
Colchester Campus
Law (School of)

After the economic crisis and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, are you concerned about the impacts of austerity and public health measures on economic, social and cultural rights? Are you interested in public policies and laws – on health, education, housing or food security – and how human rights can make a difference?

Our ground-breaking LLM Economic, Social and Cultural Rights builds on our distinctive expertise and reputation of working on the protection of economic, social and cultural rights in countries around the world and at the United Nations.

We combine cutting-edge scholarship and practice on the legal aspects of realising economic, social and cultural rights, with the latest thinking in the implementation of these rights. The course focuses on:

  • International human rights law protections of economic, social and cultural rights
  • How human rights law is developed through public policy and practice
  • New tools and methodologies for achieving these rights

We include a range of key law courses to enable our non-law students to develop an understanding of human rights, public international, constitutional and administrative law.

This course is also available on a part-time

Why we're great.
  • Work on real-life projects with our Human Rights Centre Clinic
  • You have excellent opportunities to network with scholars, policymakers, and practitioners working on economic, social and cultural rights
  • We are ranked top 20 in the UK for research excellence (REF 2014, mainstream universities, THE 2014)
THE Awards 2018 - Winner University of the Year

Our expert staff

Our work has always been informed by human rights practice and our expert staff have held key positions in the United Nations human rights and development fields, as well as working with national human rights institutions and civil society organisations on economic, social and cultural rights.

At Essex, our objective is to ensure you receive a rigorous academic education that also prepares you for working as a human rights advocate. Every member of our teaching team is a leading human rights academic, as well as a practitioner in the field.

  • Judith Bueno De Mesquita, Lecturer and Deputy Director of the Human Rights Centre Clinic. Judith has previously worked with the UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Health; and as a consultant with, amongst others, the World Health Organisation, the Independent Panel on Pandemic Preparedness and Response, UNFPA, OHCHR, UNICEF, DFID, Medact and International Planned Parenthood Foundation.
  • Dr Koldo Casla, Lecturer and Deputy Director of the Human Rights Centre Clinic. Koldo previously worked as the chief of staff of the Human Rights Commissioner of the Basque Country (Spain) and coordinated the UK social rights NGO Just Fair. He has also been a research consultant for Amnesty International in Spain and Crisis in the UK, among others.
  • Professor Paul Hunt. Paul has previously been Special Adviser on Human Rights in the World Health Organisation, UN Special Rapporteur on the Right to Health 2002-08, and member of the UN Committee on Economic and Social Rights 1999-2002. (Currently on leave leading the New Zealand Human Rights Commission).

Specialist facilities

  • Participate in various legal competitions to hone your debating, mediation and negotiation skills
  • Work on key human rights projects at our Human Rights Clinic
  • Network at our student-run Law Society, Human Rights Society, and Bar Society, which provides legal advice to the Commonwealth Students’ Association (CSA)
  • Volunteer at the Essex Law Clinic where you can work alongside practicing solicitors to offer legal advice to clients
  • Join our Model United Nations society, which can improve your skills of argumentation, oral presentation and research
  • Take advantage of networking opportunities throughout the year with visiting law firms

Aside from the Human Rights Clinic, the Human Rights Centre has a number of specialist projects:

Your future

The majority of our students go on, or return, to work in human rights as litigators, in NGOs and international organisations like the UN, in government (particularly Ministries of Foreign Affairs), national human rights institutions, think-tanks and in academia. They are a conspicuous presence in all the key human rights hubs in the world. The Human Rights Centre has a strong tradition in the field of economic, social and cultural rights, and our alumni occupy leadership and research positions in leading international human rights civil society organisations, and have been appointed as UN human rights independent experts.

We are first university in the UK to sign a memorandum of understanding with the United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR). This creates internship and research opportunities for our postgraduate students and is based on our long-established expertise in international humanitarian law.

During the year, we hold a careers session for our students in which we reflect upon our own careers and how they have been built as well as those from former students. We are always available to discuss career options and if you are interested in a particular area of human rights, we can link you up with the relevant alumni to offer advice.

We work with the University’s Careers Services to help you find out about further work experience, internships, placements, and voluntary opportunities. Take a look at our dedicated careers pages for Law and Human Rights.

Entry requirements

UK entry requirements

A 2:2 honours degree, or international equivalent, in a Social Science, Law or any Humanities subject.

While prior academic study or professional experience of law is desirable, it is not a requirement for admission. LLM students who have not previously studied Public International Law will take a one-term module on this topic.

International & EU entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries. Get in touch with any questions you may have about the qualifications we accept. Remember to tell us about the qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.

Sorry, the entry requirements for the country that you have selected are not available here. Please select your country page where you'll find this information.

English language requirements

IELTS 6.5 overall with a minimum component score of 5.5 except for 6.0 in writing

If you do not meet our IELTS requirements then you may be able to complete a pre-sessional English pathway that enables you to start your course without retaking IELTS.

Additional Notes

The University uses academic selection criteria to determine an applicant’s ability to successfully complete a course at the University of Essex. Where appropriate, we may ask for specific information relating to previous modules studied or work experience.

Structure

Course structure

We offer a flexible course structure with a mixture of core/compulsory modules, and optional modules chosen from lists.

Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field. The course content is therefore reviewed on an annual basis to ensure our courses remain up-to-date so modules listed are subject to change.

Teaching and learning disclaimer

Following the impact of the pandemic, we made changes to our teaching and assessment to ensure our current students could continue with their studies uninterrupted and safely. These changes included courses being taught through blended delivery, normally including some face-to-face teaching, online provision, or a combination of both across the year.

The teaching and assessment methods listed show what is currently approved for 2022 entry; changes may be necessary if, by the beginning of this course, we need to adapt the way we’re delivering them due to the external environment, and to allow you to continue to receive the best education possible safely and seamlessly.

Components and modules explained

Components

Components are the blocks of study that make up your course. A component may have a set module which you must study, or a number of modules from which you can choose.

Each component has a status and carries a certain number of credits towards your qualification.

Status What this means
Core
You must take the set module for this component and you must pass. No failure can be permitted.
Core with Options
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component but you must pass. No failure can be permitted.
Compulsory
You must take the set module for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.
Compulsory with Options
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.
Optional
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.

The modules that are available for you to choose for each component will depend on several factors, including which modules you have chosen for other components, which modules you have completed in previous years of your course, and which term the module is taught in.

Modules

Modules are the individual units of study for your course. Each module has its own set of learning outcomes and assessment criteria and also carries a certain number of credits.

In most cases you will study one module per component, but in some cases you may need to study more than one module. For example, a 30-credit component may comprise of either one 30-credit module, or two 15-credit modules, depending on the options available.

Modules may be taught at different times of the year and by a different department or school to the one your course is primarily based in. You can find this information from the module code. For example, the module code HR100-4-FY means:

HR 100  4  FY

The department or school the module will be taught by.

In this example, the module would be taught by the Department of History.

The module number. 

The UK academic level of the module.

A standard undergraduate course will comprise of level 4, 5 and 6 modules - increasing as you progress through the course.

A standard postgraduate taught course will comprise of level 7 modules.

A postgraduate research degree is a level 8 qualification.

The term the module will be taught in.

  • AU: Autumn term
  • SP: Spring term
  • SU: Summer term
  • FY: Full year 
  • AP: Autumn and Spring terms
  • PS: Spring and Summer terms
  • AS: Autumn and Summer terms

COMPONENT 01: CORE

Dissertation
(60 CREDITS)

You’ll undertake a dissertation of between 15,000-20,000 words in length for your LLM International Human Rights Law course. This is a compulsory element of the course.

View Dissertation on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 02: COMPULSORY

International Human Rights Law: Law and Practice
(30 CREDITS)

What are the contemporary issues within international human rights law? How does the UN promote and protect human rights? Gain a critical and contextual introduction to international human rights law. Build your analytical skills in relation to the subject. Discuss current issues and events in group work.

View International Human Rights Law: Law and Practice on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 03: COMPULSORY

International Human Rights: Theories and Institutions
(15 CREDITS)

The module starts by providing students with an overview of human rights and human rights law. It then introduces students to a range of critical approaches to human rights law, including feminist, TWAIL (Third World Approaches to International Law), postcolonial, and queer approaches. Next, the module looks at the range of international and regional institutions for enforcing human rights, before turning to domestic enforcement. The module ensures students on the International Human Rights LLMs have a firm grounding in theoretical approaches to international human rights law, as well as the core institutions for human rights protection.

View International Human Rights: Theories and Institutions on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 04: COMPULSORY

Contemporary Challenges in Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
(15 CREDITS)

COMPONENT 05: OPTIONAL

Option from list
(15 CREDITS)

COMPONENT 06: OPTIONAL

Option(s) from list
(30 CREDITS)

COMPONENT 07: COMPULSORY

Public International Law
(15 CREDITS)

What does it mean to be an international lawyer? Understand the founding principles of international laws. Apply the tools and techniques of legal reasoning to the international system. Understand how the system of international law works and form your own views through discussion of contemporary issues.

View Public International Law on our Module Directory

Teaching

  • Mainly taught through seminars, supplemented by lectures where appropriate
  • Small group teaching
  • Postgraduates are welcome to participate in and present their work at our popular School Seminar Series

Assessment

  • Virtually all your modules are assessed by a combination of essays, take-home examinations or 100% coursework

Dissertation

  • Your dissertation is normally between 15,000-20,000 words in length
  • A compulsory component of our LLM courses
  • Supervision and guidance is given

Fees and funding

Home/UK fee

£9,200

International fee

£19,740

Fees will increase for each academic year of study.

What's next

Open Days

We hold Open Days for all our applicants throughout the year. Our Colchester Campus events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex, and give you the chance to:

  • tour our campus and accommodation
  • find out answers to your questions about our courses, student finance, graduate employability, student support and more
  • meet our students and staff

If the dates of our organised events aren’t suitable for you, feel free to get in touch by emailing tours@essex.ac.uk and we’ll arrange an individual campus tour for you.

2021 Open Days (Colchester Campus)

  • Saturday, October 23, 2021
  • Saturday, November 13, 2021

Applying

You can apply for this postgraduate course online. Before you apply, please check our information about necessary documents that we’ll ask you to provide as part of your application.

We aim to respond to applications within two weeks. If we are able to offer you a place, you will be contacted via email.

For information on our deadline to apply for this course, please see our ‘how to apply’ information.

You will need to provide a copy of your CV with your application.

Colchester Campus

Visit Colchester Campus

Home to 15,000 students from more than 130 countries, our Colchester Campus is the largest of our three sites, making us one of the most internationally diverse campuses on the planet - we like to think of ourselves as the world in one place.

The Campus is set within 200 acres of beautiful parkland, located two miles from the historic town centre of Colchester – England's oldest recorded town. Our Colchester Campus is also easily reached from London and Stansted Airport in under one hour.

 

Virtual tours

If you live too far away to come to Essex (or have a busy lifestyle), no problem. Our 360 degree virtual tour allows you to explore the Colchester Campus from the comfort of your home. Check out our accommodation options, facilities and social spaces.

Exhibitions

Our staff travel the world to speak to people about the courses on offer at Essex. Take a look at our list of exhibition dates to see if we’ll be near you in the future.

At Essex we pride ourselves on being a welcoming and inclusive student community. We offer a wide range of support to individuals and groups of student members who may have specific requirements, interests or responsibilities.


Find out more

The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its programme specification is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to courses, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include, but are not limited to: strikes, other industrial action, staff illness, severe weather, fire, civil commotion, riot, invasion, terrorist attack or threat of terrorist attack (whether declared or not), natural disaster, restrictions imposed by government or public authorities, epidemic or pandemic disease, failure of public utilities or transport systems or the withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to courses may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications.

The full Procedures, Rules and Regulations of the University governing how it operates are set out in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.

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