The course will focus mainly on the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and the 1967 Protocol, supplemented by additional materials that assist in the interpretation, construction and critique of these instruments. Particular attention will be paid to national implementation of refugee protection and status determination procedures in Australia, comparing and contrasting the approach taken, where appropriate, with that of other nations.
Addressed will be the origins of the international system of protection, its limitations and deficiencies; the role and relevance of UNHCR; definitional problems; exclusion and cessation of refugee status; core concepts of protection (including complementary protection), asylum, non-refoulement, penalization and refugee rights; asylum, temporary refuge, temporary protection and burden-sharing; durable solutions; protracted refugee situations; status determination procedures; detention; 'deflection' techniques; other categories such as 'environmental' refugees and internally displaced persons; and a consideration of possible future directions for refugee law.
• the conventional and customary law obligations of States in respect of refugees and other asylum-seekers and of the rights of applicants;
• the protection mechanisms, both national and international, that operate for the immediate and long-term protection of refuge-seekers and the policy considerations that affect contemporary State attitudes to such groups;
• the legal problems affecting national interpretations and application of refugee concepts, with particular emphasis on definitional problems, status determination procedures and non-refoulement; and
• the 'gaps' in international protection and the extent to which international law more broadly is able to address them.
Upon successful completion, students will have the knowledge and skills to:
- Analyse complex problems, concepts and theories in international refugee law and devise solutions appropriate to the specific context;
- Undertake critical legal research, legal writing and resolution of complex legal problems with an international or transnational dimension across a range of issues and topics in international refugee law;
- Research and write on the practice or theory of international refugee law including in-depth legal and policy research in the international refugee law field, as well as the implementation of refugee law domestically;
- Incorporate social, policy, comparative or interdisciplinary approaches into legal analysis of international and domestic refugee issues;
- Engage in original and critical reflection on international refugee law topics;
- Communicate legal, policy and theoretical perspectives of international refugee legal issues effectively, both verbally and in writing; and
- Structure, sustain and evaluate legal argument in international refugee law applying legal knowledge to complex international refugee legal problems in an analytical and creative manner.
- A class presentation or legal submission on behalf of a hypothetical claimant (20) [LO 1,2,3,4,5,6,7]
- A written research assignment or law reform submission (4,500 words) (65) [LO 1,2,3,4,5,6,7]
- One online quiz (15) [LO 1,2,3,4,5,6,7]
The ANU uses 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. While the use of Turnitin is not mandatory, the ANU highly recommends Turnitin is used by both teaching staff and students. For additional information regarding Turnitin please visit the ANU Online website.
Classes offered in non-standard sessions will be taught on an intensive base with compulsory contact hours (approximately 26 hours of face to face teaching). The course will also require advanced preparation through assigned readings. In total, it is anticipated that the hours required for completion of this course (class preparation, teaching and completion of assessment) will not exceed 120 hours. Classes offered during semester periods are expected to have 3 contact hours per week.
Click here for the LLM Masters Program timetable.
Requisite and Incompatibility
There is no prescribed text for this course.
Students must rely on the approved Class Summary which will be posted to the Programs and Courses site approximately 2 weeks prior to the commencement of the course.
An e-brick will be available on the Wattle course site.
Assumed KnowledgeParticipants must have completed Principles of International Law (LAWS8182) or equivalent.
Tuition fees are for the academic year indicated at the top of the page.
If you are a domestic graduate coursework or international student you will be required to pay tuition fees. Tuition fees are indexed annually. Further information for domestic and international students about tuition and other fees can be found at Fees.
- Student Contribution Band:
- Unit value:
- 6 units
If you are an undergraduate student and have been offered a Commonwealth supported place, your fees are set by the Australian Government for each course. At ANU 1 EFTSL is 48 units (normally 8 x 6-unit courses). You can find your student contribution amount for each course at Fees. Where there is a unit range displayed for this course, not all unit options below may be available.
Offerings, Dates and Class Summary Links
Class summaries, if available, can be accessed by clicking on the View link for the relevant class number.