Study-Unit Description

Study-Unit Description


TITLE European Court of Human Rights

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



DESCRIPTION This study-unit is meant to familiarise students over a brief course of lectures and discussion sessions with Human Rights Law focusing on the European Court of Human Rights. The study-unit introduces the notion of fundamental Human Rights, the main International Instruments protecting fundamental human rights with particular attention to the Universal declaration of human rights and the European Convention on fundamental human rights and freedoms. The study-unit will also familiarise the student with the incorporation of the said convention in the municipal Law of the various European states; students will be also cover the European Charter of Fundamental rights. Further attention will be given to the remedies available at both International and Municipal level to those who allege that the fundamental rights have been breached. Lastly the lectures will focus on a brief description of the content of each of the fundamental human rights in the Council of Europe Convention.

Study-Unit Aims:

- This study-unit aims to give the student insight into the history and development of Human Rights Law and the important role of individual petition;
- The unit intends to look into the structure of the European Court of Human Rights and the procedure involved in filing a case in the Court;
- The study-unit also aims to explain how the principles of the Court have evolved over time through case law.

Learning Outcomes:

At the end of this study-unit, the student will:

- Gain an understanding on human rights and fundamental freedoms;
- Distinguish between human rights and fundamental freedoms;
- Note the limitations and restrictions imposed on such rights and freedoms;
- Appreciate the difference that exists in various human rights and fundamental freedoms legal regimes;
- Know the salient case law of the European Court of Human Rights.

Reading List:

- Philip Alston, Ryan Goodman and Henry J. Steiner, International Human Rights In Context: Law, Politics and Morals, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007 (third edition).
- D.J. Harris, M.O’Boyle, E.P. Bates and C.M. Buckley, Harris, O’Boyle & Warbrick Law of the European Convention on Human Rights, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2009 (second edition).
- Mark W. Janis, Richard S. Kay and Anthony W. Bradley, European Human Rights Law: Text and Materials, Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2008 (third edition).
- European Court of Human Rights Database, HUDOC Database, available at

ADDITIONAL NOTES Students taking this study-unit need to have a background in law.


Assessment Component/s Assessment Due Resit Availability Weighting
Assignment SEM1 Yes 100%


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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.