• Class Number 6808
  • Term Code 2950
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery In Person
    • Angeline Lewis
    • Angeline Lewis
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 09/08/2019
  • Class End Date 24/09/2019
  • Census Date 23/08/2019
  • Last Date to Enrol 23/08/2019
SELT Survey Results

International Security Law focuses primarily on collective security measures involving both military and non-military activities against both traditional and non-traditional security threats.

The course will introduce students to the conceptual, normative and institutional framework governing international security law.  It will move on to two major components of collective security measures - peacekeeping and peace enforcement - in which recent operational and doctrinal developments such as civilian protection and the notion of "responsibility to protect" will also be discussed.

The reinvigoration of the UN Security Council's authority and its expanded conception of security since the end of the Cold War have significantly increased an understanding of the legal basis, nature and limits of collective security measures. During the course, students will be given opportunities to familiarise themselves with contemporary examples of how international law in different areas regulates the way in which security measures are adopted and undertaken in response to existing and emerging threats.


Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:

  1. Demonstrate an advanced understanding of international law as it applies to international and regional security issues;
  2. Demonstrate a sound knowledge of the normative and institutional frameworks characterising international security law and rules governing the operations for the purpose of maintaining or restoring international peace and security;
  3. Explain and critically analyse the operation of the relevant provisions of the United Nations Charter and other international legal instruments dealing with various international or regional security issues; and
  4. Plan and execute complex legal research with independence in order to produce original scholarship on a specific aspect of international law issues arising from different international security concerns within the normative and institutional frameworks.

Research-Led Teaching

International Security Law is characterised by research-led teaching. It challenges students to question traditional principles of ISL through the lens of current international events, presented as case studies. This is reinforced through analysis of primary international source documents. The course also establishes a foundation for future student research in the field of international security law, offering students the opportunity either to design their own research project or critically analyse a set research topic for Assessment Task 2.

Additional Course Costs

This course is an intensive course taught at the ANU Acton Campus in Canberra. Students will need to cover costs associated with travel, accommodation, meals etc, if attending from out of state.

Required Resources

There is no prescribed textbook for this course. Students will be provided with an E-brick and a reading guide, which will be made available on the Wattle site prior to the commencement of the course. The e-brick includes core readings divided by topic, which are essential preparation for class, and additional readings. The additional readings help students develop a more detailed understanding of course topics and themes, and are encouraged but not mandatory.

For students who are new to this field, the following introductory textbook is recommended (but not required) for preliminary reading:

  • Nigel D White, Advanced Introduction to International Security Law (Edward Elger, 2014).

The following books are also recommended as general works in the field of international security law. They are not required reading for this course.

  • Nicholas Tsagourias and Nigel D White, Collective Security: Theory, Law and Practice (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2013).
  • Alexander Orakhelashvili, Collective Security (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011).
  • Hitoshi Nasu, International Law on Peacekeeping: A Study of Article 40 of the UN Charter (Leiden: Martinus Nijhoff, 2009)
  • Cecilia M Bailliet (ed), Security: A Multidisciplinary Normative Approach (Leiden: Martinus Nijhoff, 2009).
  • Simon Chesterman, Thomas M Franck & David M Malone, Law and Practice of the United Nations: Documents and Commentary (New York and London: Oxford University Press, 2008)
  • Ramesh Thakur, The United Nations, Peace and Security (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2006)
  • Benedetto Conforti, The Law and Practice of the United Nations (3rd revised ed, Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 2005)
  • UN Secretary-General’s High Level Panel on Threats, Challenges and Change, A More Secure World: Our Shared Responsibility (New York: United Nations Department of Public Information, 2004)
  • Hans Kelsen, Collective Security under International Law (Naval War College, 1957)

Staff Feedback

Students will be given feedback in the following forms in this course:

  • written comments
  • verbal comments
  • feedback to whole class, groups, individuals, focus group etc

Student Feedback

ANU is committed to the demonstration of educational excellence and regularly seeks feedback from students. Students are encouraged to offer feedback directly to their Course Convener or through their College and Course representatives (if applicable). The feedback given in these surveys is anonymous and provides the Colleges, University Education Committee and Academic Board with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement. The Surveys and Evaluation website provides more information on student surveys at ANU and reports on the feedback provided on ANU courses.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
1 The first part of the course is an introduction to key concepts and to the analytical framework for international security. Students will be introduced to the norms of international security law (ISL) and the UN Charter’s collective security framework. A detailed lecture timetable will be published on Wattle prior to course commencement.
2 The second module of teaching focuses on collective security and the United Nations, particularly the working methods of the Security Council and the General Assembly, peacekeeping, and the doctrines of ‘responsibility to protect’ and ‘protection of civilians.’
3 The third module of teaching expands the focus of ISL from the traditional UN model. It addresses regional security architectures, non-traditional security threats, and case studies of emerging security approaches. These studies may include rule of law-based security theory, and the UN’s ‘women, peace and security’ agenda.
4 The fourth module of teaching considers the extent to which the current model of ISL is flexible to new environments, actors and domains. Studies include polar security, the South China Sea and cyberspace.

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
Online Take-home exam 40 % 27/08/2019 03/09/2019 1, 2, 3
Research Essay 60 % 24/09/2019 22/10/2019 1, 2, 3, 4

* If the Due Date and Return of Assessment date are blank, see the Assessment Tab for specific Assessment Task details


ANU has educational policies, procedures and guidelines, which are designed to ensure that staff and students are aware of the University’s academic standards, and implement them. Students are expected to have read the Academic Misconduct Rule before the commencement of their course. Other key policies and guidelines include:

Assessment Requirements

The ANU is using Turnitin to enhance student citation and referencing techniques, and to assess assignment submissions as a component of the University's approach to managing Academic Integrity. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website. In rare cases where online submission using Turnitin software is not technically possible; or where not using Turnitin software has been justified by the Course Convener and approved by the Associate Dean (Education) on the basis of the teaching model being employed; students shall submit assessment online via ‘Wattle’ outside of Turnitin, or failing that in hard copy, or through a combination of submission methods as approved by the Associate Dean (Education). The submission method is detailed below.

Moderation of Assessment

Marks that are allocated during Semester are to be considered provisional until formalised by the College examiners meeting at the end of each Semester. If appropriate, some moderation of marks might be applied prior to final results being released.


For all courses taught face-to-face in intensive mode, the ANU College of Law considers participation in the classes offered to be an important part of the educational experience of the graduate program and students are required to attend ALL classes (and all of each class).

In exceptional circumstances, a student may be granted permission by the Course Convenor, in consultation with the Stream Convenor or Director, LLM Program, to miss some classes, provided:

(a) it does not exceed a maximum of 25% of the classes;

(b) permission is requested in advance; and

(c) the request is supported, where appropriate, by adequate documentation.

Failure to comply with this policy may result in a student receiving the grade of NCN (non-complete fail). The normal pressures of work or planned personal trips do not constitute exceptional circumstances to justify an exemption from full compliance of this policy.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 40 %
Due Date: 27/08/2019
Return of Assessment: 03/09/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3

Online Take-home exam

Nature of task: Online take-home exam, comprising 10 multiple choice questions (worth 2 marks each) and 4 short answer questions (worth 5 marks each). Answers to short answer questions should be concise, and should not exceed approximately 250 words. The take-home exam must be accessed and completed within 2.5 hours through the Wattle site.

Released: The online take-home exam will be made available at 0900 (AEST) on Saturday 24 August 2019

Due: The online take-home exam will close at 11:55pm (AEST) on Tuesday 27 August 2019. Students may access the take-home exam at any time in this window, provided they access and submit it within a two and a half-hour period before the closing time.


Assessment Criteria:

1)     Understanding of the material

  • understanding the content and scope of relevant legal principles and concepts
  • consulting and comprehending any aspect of the lecture material
  • linking material between various different topics.

2)     Thinking critically about the material

  • considering what best describes the answer to the question asked
  • where appropriate, looking at questions from different angles

Assessment Task 2

Value: 60 %
Due Date: 24/09/2019
Return of Assessment: 22/10/2019
Learning Outcomes: 1, 2, 3, 4

Research Essay

Length: 5,000 words inclusive of footnotes. The College’s rules for exceeding word length will apply.

Due: 11:55pm (AEST) Tuesday 24 September 2019. Late submission permitted.


A list of essay topics will be posted to the course Wattle page on Monday 12 August 2019. Students may choose one of the listed topics or they may research and write on an international security law topic of their own choice which meets the course objectives. However, all individually-proposed topics must be approved by the course convener after consultation. Students are responsible for consulting with the course convener on their proposed topic. The consultation process may require review and refinement of the proposed topic, and so students wishing to seek approval should not wait until the last minute to do so.  All individual topics are to be approved by Friday 6 September 2019. 


Assessment Criteria:

1)     Understanding of the issues

  • addresses the relevant issues for the normative and institutional framework of international security law, and covers all the important points
  • legal issues raised by the topic are clearly and concisely identified
  • material chosen relates clearly to the topic and is analysed, not just summarised or quoted extensively

2)     Communication and development of argument

  • clear theme or argument
  • arguments regarding the operation of legal provisions logically explained and well-organised
  • ideas/paragraphs linked coherently

3)     Argument/analysis

  • originality of ideas and critical analysis of the material
  • complexity and insight in dealing with theory/ideas
  • suggestions for change where appropriate
  • interdisciplinary perspective where appropriate
  • addresses opposing arguments
  • well-reasoned conclusions

4)     Research

  • research covering a range of primary and secondary materials
  • use of theoretical material where appropriate
  • good organisation of sources
  • integration of material from research resources into the essay

5)     Presentation, style and referencing

  • good use of structure, section headings and paragraphs
  • clarity and conciseness of expression, interesting and engaging of reader
  • use of appropriate terminology and correct grammar, syntax and spelling
  • full and accurate footnotes together with a bibliography
  • style according to Australian Guide to Legal Citation or equivalent style guide
  • adherence to word limit

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of our culture as a community of scholars. At its heart, academic integrity is about behaving ethically. This means that all members of the community commit to honest and responsible scholarly practice and to upholding these values with respect and fairness. The Australian National University commits to embedding the values of academic integrity in our teaching and learning. We ensure that all members of our community understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. The ANU expects staff and students to uphold high standards of academic integrity and act ethically and honestly, to ensure the quality and value of the qualification that you will graduate with. The University has policies and procedures in place to promote academic integrity and manage academic misconduct. Visit the following Academic honesty & plagiarism website for more information about academic integrity and what the ANU considers academic misconduct. The ANU offers a number of services to assist students with their assignments, examinations, and other learning activities. The Academic Skills and Learning Centre offers a number of workshops and seminars that you may find useful for your studies.

Online Submission

You will be required to electronically sign a declaration as part of the submission of your assignment. Please keep a copy of the assignment for your records. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education) submission must be through Turnitin.

Hardcopy Submission

For some forms of assessment (hand written assignments, art works, laboratory notes, etc.) hard copy submission is appropriate when approved by the Associate Dean (Education). Hard copy submissions must utilise the Assignment Cover Sheet. Please keep a copy of tasks completed for your records.

Late Submission

Individual assessment tasks may or may not allow for late submission. Policy regarding late submission is detailed below:

  • Late submission permitted. Late submission of assessment tasks without an extension are penalised at the rate of 5% of the possible marks available per working day or part thereof. Late submission of assessment tasks is not accepted after 10 working days after the due date, or on or after the date specified in the course outline for the return of the assessment item. Late submission is not accepted for take-home examinations.

Referencing Requirements

Accepted academic practice for referencing sources that you use in presentations can be found via the links on the Wattle site, under the file named “ANU and College Policies, Program Information, Student Support Services and Assessment”. Alternatively, you can seek help through the Students Learning Development website.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. The Course Convener may grant extensions for assessment pieces that are not examinations or take-home examinations. If you need an extension, you must request an extension in writing on or before the due date. If you have documented and appropriate medical evidence that demonstrates you were not able to request an extension on or before the due date, you may be able to request it after the due date.

Privacy Notice

The ANU has made a number of third party, online, databases available for students to use. Use of each online database is conditional on student end users first agreeing to the database licensor’s terms of service and/or privacy policy. Students should read these carefully. In some cases student end users will be required to register an account with the database licensor and submit personal information, including their: first name; last name; ANU email address; and other information.
In cases where student end users are asked to submit ‘content’ to a database, such as an assignment or short answers, the database licensor may only use the student’s ‘content’ in accordance with the terms of service – including any (copyright) licence the student grants to the database licensor. Any personal information or content a student submits may be stored by the licensor, potentially offshore, and will be used to process the database service in accordance with the licensors terms of service and/or privacy policy.
If any student chooses not to agree to the database licensor’s terms of service or privacy policy, the student will not be able to access and use the database. In these circumstances students should contact their lecturer to enquire about alternative arrangements that are available.

Distribution of grades policy

Academic Quality Assurance Committee monitors the performance of students, including attrition, further study and employment rates and grade distribution, and College reports on quality assurance processes for assessment activities, including alignment with national and international disciplinary and interdisciplinary standards, as well as qualification type learning outcomes.

Since first semester 1994, ANU uses a grading scale for all courses. This grading scale is used by all academic areas of the University.

Support for students

The University offers students support through several different services. You may contact the services listed below directly or seek advice from your Course Convener, Student Administrators, or your College and Course representatives (if applicable).

Angeline Lewis

Research Interests

Dr Angeline Lewis has served as a Legal Officer in the Australian Defence Force since 2003, and has taught international law at ANU College of Law casually since 2009. Her research and publications span different aspects of international security law and the laws of armed conflict, including Judicial Reconstruction and the Rule of Law: Reassessing Military Intervention in Iraq and Beyond (Brill, 2012) and articles/chapters on the rule of law in military operations, the future of air power in a rules-based world order, maritime security, emerging technologies, and the women, peace and security (WPS) doctrine.

Angeline Lewis

Wednesday 17:30 19:00
Angeline Lewis
+61 2 6125 3483

Research Interests

Angeline Lewis

Wednesday 17:30 19:00

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