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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Law : Law

Postgraduate Course: Migration and Refugee Law (LAWS11368)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Law CollegeCollege of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 11 (Postgraduate) AvailabilityNot available to visiting students
SCQF Credits20 ECTS Credits10
SummaryInternational Refugee Law and Migration / Refugees and Migration Law will familiarise students with key instruments and legal principles within the international refugee law framework, international protection, and issues of forced migration and other categories of migration from a human rights perspective. It will cover core concepts that pertain to asylum, international treaties, including regional treaties, as well as policy, push and pull factors, durable solutions, and root causes of migration.

Students will gain an understanding of concepts surrounding asylum, refugee status determination, internal displacement, statelessness, human trafficking and smuggling, citizenship and borders, economic and labour migration, environmental migration, the domestic use of immigration-related terminology, as well as politicisation, misconceptions, the criminalisation of migration, and immigration detention. Specific vulnerabilities and an intersectional view of oppression in the context of persecution will be analysed such as issues of gender, age, disability, sexual orientation and identity, and persons at heightened risk. Students will be encouraged to critically analyse and engage in ongoing academic debates and to link the ideologies that underpin international human rights law as they pertain to refugees and migration vis-à-vis the realities of the impact of migration on individuals. They will also gain an understanding of conducting research of refugees and migrants, country of origin information, and the ethics of researching vulnerable communities that include refugees and migrants.
Course description * Wider historical and legal framework of refugee law: a right to move and reside? Can migration be managed? How has it been regulated in the past, and what are the most important international legal instruments nowadays? The 1951 Geneva Convention (accession, scope, limitations, etc.) and the work of the UNHCR and other UN agencies.
* Refugees and other persons in need of (international) protection: internally displaced persons, environmental migrants, stateless persons; Determination of refugee status (conditions according to the Geneva Convention: well-founded fear, reasons of persecution, etc.); other forms of protection according to the Geneva Convention.
* Loss or denial of refugee status, criminalization of refugees and detention
* Principle of non-refoulement
* Gender issues and minors: vulnerable migrants
* Council of Europe legal framework for refugee protection
* EU regime on asylum: the road to ¿Dublin¿; the Dublin regime explained; Directives dealing with asylum in the EU (procedures directive, qualifications directive, reception conditions directive); directive on mass influx, tension EU/ECHR with regard to state responsibility re refugees / asylum seekers)
* EU policy on migration and EU external migration policy (think of EU Turkey deal, readmission agreements, etc).

Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites Students MUST also take: International Human Rights Law (LAWS11325)
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Course Delivery Information
Academic year 2022/23, Not available to visiting students (SS1) Quota:  25
Course Start Semester 2
Timetable Timetable
Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Seminar/Tutorial Hours 20, Feedback/Feedforward Hours 2, Formative Assessment Hours 2, Summative Assessment Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 170 )
Assessment (Further Info) Written Exam 0 %, Coursework 100 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Additional Information (Assessment) 1500 Word Essay (25%)
3500 Word Essay (75%)
Feedback Feedback will be available at regular points through this course.
No Exam Information
Learning Outcomes
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
  1. Students will be able to plan and execute a research project both in a group and individual setting.
  2. Critical research skills will be developed.
  3. Advanced practical application of the law will be acquired through the course in both group projects and individual research.
Reading List
Journal articles will be the primary assigned readings. The following is an indicative list of journal titles, to which the library already holds a subscription:

European Journal of Migration and Law
Human Rights Law Journal
Human Rights Law Review
Refugee Survey Quarterly
International Journal of Refugee Law
Journal of Refugee Studies
Journal of Migration and Refugee Issues
Journal of Immigrant and Refugee Studies
International Migration

Further additional text readings from the following will be assigned occasionally:
Gender in Refugee Law: From the Margins to the Centre
Immigration, Nationality & Refugee Law Handbook
Contemporary Issues in Refugee Law
UNHCR and International Refugee Law: From Treaties to Innovation
Additional Information
Graduate Attributes and Skills Not entered
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Dalia Malek
Tel: (0131 6)50 9772
Course secretaryMiss Chloe Culross
Tel: (0131 6)50 9588
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