Human Rights Law Centre

Distance Learning Course - International Human Rights Law

This course is designed to give an in-depth understanding of international human rights standards and of the UN and regional systems that implement them. It has both theoretical and practical dimensions, with an emphasis upon current issues.

It is taught by leading human rights academics and practitioners in the international human rights systems. The academic director, Professor Emeritus David Harris, is a former Member of the European Committee of Social Rights and author of books on International, European and Inter-American human rights law. 


The course is aimed at those for whom knowledge of the increasingly important subject of international human rights law is of value in their work, or who wish to embark upon a career in human rights. It is particularly intended for those who cannot find the time to take a full-time course, such as the 10-week course that the centre offers.

Course highlights

  • Modules focusing on key human rights themes or issues
  • Study Guide for each module
  • Interactive website for online course discussion
  • Essay topics and self-study questions, plus interaction with teachers
  • Summer School in Nottingham (additional fee applies)
  • Certificate of completion

Teaching materials

Students access a Study Guide for each module for which they register. The Guide provides a programme of work for each of the eight weeks of the module. It has textbook material written for the module, plus the texts of treaties and other relevant source materials and key articles and book chapters. It also includes further reading lists and case studies, as well as self-test questions. Through the course website students are able to discuss the module online with teacher and with other students.

Study days

Students visit The University of Nottingham campus for two days of study sessions. There will be seminars on each of the modules being studied by students. The seminars will be given by the teachers who are responsible for the modules or academics and practitioners who have first-hand experience of the subject areas in practice. These study days will provide an excellent opportunity to meet and discuss the course with teachers and other distance learning students.

Summer School

The course ends with a one week Summer School at The University of Nottingham in June. The Summer School provides an excellent opportunity to meet and discuss this course with teachers and other distance learning participants.


+44 (0)115 846 8506


Human Rights Law Centre

School of Law
University of Nottingham
University Park
Nottingham, NG7 2RD

+44 (0)115 846 8506