International Human Rights Law Clinic (YR)

Section 1, Fall 18

Schedule Information

Enrollment: 13/13
Credits: 3

Course Description

The International Human Rights Clinic is a year-long learning experience that introduces law students to human rights practice. The clinic has three main components: hands-on experience, analysis and critical reflection of current human rights tools and strategies, and design of alternatives to improve such practice. Through the combination of these three components, the clinic seeks to build the skills and promote the necessary approaches for effective human rights advocacy in the contemporary international context. The clinic is organized around the analysis of potential innovative solutions to human rights problems rather than on specific issues, geographic regions, or target groups. The experiential component of the clinic promotes collaborative learning by developing projects with a multi-sectorial, multi-cultural and interdisciplinary range of partners, which include international human rights NGOs, intergovernmental organizations, research and academic institutions, private and public agencies, and policy makers from around the world (most clinic’s partners are located in the Global South). Students will work in teams on one or more projects throughout the year. All students will have direct contact with experienced practitioners and some projects may include interaction with local communities and/or victims. Students will have an option (but are not required) to participate in international field research or representation. Optional opportunities outside of the classroom, such as a tour of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights in Washington D.C, will be scheduled throughout the year. The seminar component will take place during the fall term. Discussions will revolve around the current political international context and its impact on the human rights field, ethical and professional dilemmas that human rights advocates face in pursuing their strategies, and the emergence of new approaches and techniques to promote social justice and advance the international human rights law framework, among other issues. In the spring term, teams will hold regular meetings with the Clinic Director to discuss specific projects and their progress.

Course Requirements

Exam Info:
Midterm Type (if any): None
Description: None

Final Type (if any): None

Written Work Product
Written Work Product: Students will provide substantial written work on one or more clinical assignments, which could include legal briefs and advocacy papers depending on the project.

Other Work

Other Course Details
Prerequisites: International Law and/or International Human Rights Law recommended, but not required. Because the credits in this course count toward the JD Program Professional Skills requirement, JD candidates will be given enrollment priority for this class. Concurrencies: None
Mutually Exclusive With: None
Laptops Allowed: Yes
First Day Attendance Required: No
Course Notes: Projects for 2018-2019 may focus on one or more of these issues: Collecting and analyzing responses by human rights organizations to the growing crackdown against civil society in different countries around the world; Litigation of cases on the human rights impacts of climate change and other environmental damages in Latin American countries; Litigation and advocacy before the Inter-American Human Rights System; Supporting the work of the U.N. Committee on the Rights of Migrant Workers and their Families; and improving the capacity of national African judicial systems to address international crimes. NOTE REGARDING CREDITS: Of the six credits awarded for this clinic, three will receive a "credit/no credit" grade at the conclusion of the fall semester, and three will receive a letter grade at the conclusion of the spring semester.

Graduation Requirements

*Satisfies Writing Requirement: No
**Credits For Prof. Skills Requirement: Yes
Satisfies Professional Ethics: No

*Yes means professor requires everyone in the course to submit a substantial research paper (which is the requirement standard in Academic Policies), so no paperwork required to be submitted to SRO. No means student must timely submit paperwork to SRO if intending to use a paper in this course to satisfy the Writing Requirement.

**Yes indicates course credits count towards UVA Law’s Prof. Skills graduation requirement, not necessarily a skills requirements for any particular state bar.

General Information

Schedule No.
Law No.
Modified Type
Cross Listed: No
Cross-Listed Course Mnemonic:
Public Syllabus Link: None
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Evaluation Portal Via LawWeb Closes: