LAWS3187/JURD7387 Forced Migration & Human Rights in International Law

Student: Sam Emery

What did you enjoy most about the elective?
This course gives you an insight into how this area of law has developed both domestically and internationally over the last hundred years. The course gives you a solid understanding of the United Nations instruments that apply and the way that different nations have approached the topic of refugees in case law. I enjoyed the opportunity to develop my own research essay topic to explore an area of personal interest. The class discussions are lively and there is plenty of opportunity to explore people’s opinions.

What did you find most challenging?
I found it challenging to come up a good enough research essay proposal. The proposal alone is worth twenty percent of your overall mark. To come up with a good proposal fairly early in the course means that you cannot afford to not jump head first into the material. Also, producing an original essay proposal is not something I was very accustomed to doing, it was a great chance to learn this skill and get lots of feedback on a fundamental skill: how to write a good essay. (Editor’s Note: This assessment structure has now changed)

How will this course be relevant in the future?
There is no question that displaced and persecuted peoples around the world will continue to present enormous challenges to the international community. The number of people currently seeking asylum and languishing in refugee camps is unbelievably high. To be able to understand the issue and its many complexities, at home and abroad, is very important. This is not a course just for human rights lawyers. Understanding this area of law is important as citizens of Australia and the international community because this is a truly international issue.