Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


CODE EST3180

 
TITLE Human Rights in the EU

 
LEVEL 03 - Years 2, 3, 4 in Modular Undergraduate Course

 
ECTS CREDITS 4

 
DEPARTMENT European Studies

 
DESCRIPTION The study-unit will cover the following topics:

- Introduction to the concept of human rights and the evolution of the concept at a national, regional and international level;
- The development of human rights in EU law;
- Challenges to EU action on grounds of violation of human rights;
- Challenges to Member State action on grounds of human rights;
- The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union;
- The relationship between the EU and the European Convention on Human Rights;
- The EU’s external policy on the promotion and protection of human rights.

Study-Unit Aims:

- To enable the students to understand the concept and importance of human rights protection;
- To enable the students to comprehend the development and application of human rights within an EU law context by examining the case law, political dimension and changes in the Treaties;
- To enable the students to understand the relationship between the EU’s system in guaranteeing the protection of fundamental human rights and the ECHR;
- To enable the students to distinguish between the different possibilities of human rights redress under national law, EU law and ECHR and understand the respective applicable judicial and enforcement mechanisms;
- To enable the students to assess the role played by the Commission in safeguarding human rights protection in its external relations.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to have a sound academic background on:
- The development of human rights in EU law;
- The application of EU law on human rights to EU action and Member States’ action;
- The relationship between the European Charter and the European Convention on Human rights;
- The various possibilities available for filing an action based on human rights;
- The EU’s involvement in protecting and promoting human rights within and outside the EU.

2. Skills:

By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:
- Determine the application of EU law on human rights to a particular set of facts;
- Understand and critically examine the jurisprudence of the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) in the area of human rights.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

- Paul Craig and Gráinne de Búrca, EU Law Text, Cases, and Materials, Sixth Edition (OUP 2015).
- Paul Gragl, The Accession of the European Union to the European Convention on Human Rights (Hart Publishing).
- Trevor Hartley, The Foundations of European Union Law, Eighth Edition (OUP 2014).
- Lorna Woods and Philippa Watson, Steiner & Woods EU Law, Twelfth Edition (OUP 2014).
- Tamara Hervey, Jeff Kenner, Angela Ward, The EU Charter of Fundamental Rights A Commentary, edited by Steve Peers (Hart Publishing 2014).
- Jean-Claude Piris, The Lisbon Treaty A Legal and Political Analysis (Cambridge 2010).

Legal Texts:

- Treaty on European Union.
- Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.
- Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union.
- European Convention on Human Rights.

Students are strongly encouraged to visit the site of the European Commission DG Justice and to read the material on human rights available there - http://ec.europa.eu/justice/fundamental-rights/index_en.htm

Students are strongly encouraged to read the CJEU’s cases on human rights referred to during the lectures which can be found on http://curia.europa.eu/

Further reading:

- David Harris, Michael O'Boyle, Edward Bates and Carla Buckley, Harris, O'Boyle, and Warbrick Law of the European Convention on Human Rights, Third Edition.
- Council of Europe site - http://www.coe.int/en/ & http://www.coe.int/en/web/portal/european-union/

 
STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture

 
METHOD OF ASSESSMENT
Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Presentation (15 Minutes) SEM1 No 20%
Examination (2 Hours) SEM1 Yes 80%

 
LECTURER/S Sylvann Aquilina Zahra

 
The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the description above applies to study-units available during the academic year 2020/1. It may be subject to change in subsequent years.

https://www.um.edu.mt/course/studyunit