• Class Number 3883
  • Term Code 3430
  • Class Info
  • Unit Value 6 units
  • Mode of Delivery Online
    • Yasmin Naqvi
  • Class Dates
  • Class Start Date 19/02/2024
  • Class End Date 24/05/2024
  • Census Date 05/04/2024
  • Last Date to Enrol 26/02/2024
SELT Survey Results

International Humanitarian Law is an area of international law that appears to have undergone a revival in recent years. However, the basic principles of international humanitarian law and the founding conventions in the field are of long standing. Any course in the area therefore requires an historical appreciation of the topic, a thorough understanding of the relevant international conventions – especially the Geneva Conventions and the Additional Protocols – mixed with a contemporary understanding of some of the current issues that have emerged as a result of the application and interpretation of IHL in recent conflicts. This course thus aims to provide a coherent introduction to historical, traditional, and contemporary aspects of international humanitarian law.


Learning Outcomes

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

  1. Demonstrate a sound appreciation of the historical basis for the development of the law in the field;
  2. Demonstrate an advanced understanding of international law as it applies in the area of international humanitarian law with a specialised knowledge of the relevant international conventions and treaties, especially the four Geneva Conventions and two Additional Protocols to the Geneva Conventions;
  3. Demonstrate an advanced and integrated understanding of the application of international humanitarian law to the actions of military forces and the impact of the law upon the protection of civilian populations in specific contexts; and
  4. Plan and execute complex legal research in order to construct an in-depth, critical analysis of contemporary issues which have arisen in the application and interpretation of international humanitarian law.

Required Resources

A list of readings will be made available on Wattle two weeks prior to the course commencement date. 

Whether you are on campus or studying online, there are a variety of online platforms you will use to participate in your study program. These could include videos for lectures and other instruction, two-way video conferencing for interactive learning, email and other messaging tools for communication, interactive web apps for formative and collaborative activities, print and/or photo/scan for handwritten work and drawings, and home-based assessment.

ANU outlines recommended student system requirements to ensure you are able to participate fully in your learning. Other information is also available about the various Learning Platforms you may use.

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). Feedback can also be provided to Course Conveners and teachers via the Student Experience of Learning & Teaching (SELT) feedback program. SELT surveys are confidential and also provide the Colleges and ANU Executive with opportunities to recognise excellent teaching, and opportunities for improvement.

Other Information

Task submission times refer to Canberra time (AEST/AEDT).

Extensions, late submission and penalties: https://law.anu.edu.au/current-students/policies-procedures/extensions-late-submission-and-penalties

Extenuating circumstances: https://www.anu.edu.au/students/program-administration/assessments-exams/extenuating-circumstances-application

Deferred examination: http://www.anu.edu.au/students/program-administration/assessments-exams/deferred-examinations

Penalties for excess word length: https://law.anu.edu.au/current-students/policies-procedures/word-length-and-excess-word-penalties

Distribution of grades policy: https://law.anu.edu.au/current-students/policies-procedures/grading

Further information about the course: is available from the course Wattle page. Students are required to access the Wattle site regularly throughout the course for any announcements relating to the course.

Artificial Intelligence (AI)

The ANU Academic Integrity website provides information about services available to assist students with their assignments, examinations and other learning activities, as well as providing clear guidance on the responsible and ethical use of AI technologies.

The following resources may also be useful:

• The ANU Library's Libguide is a valuable resource for gaining a comprehensive understanding of AI's role in academia.

• The ANU Academic Skills site provides useful information to ensure that you leverage AI responsibly and effectively.

• The ANU College of Law Academic Integrity and Misconduct site provides content related to legal implications, ethical guidelines, and considerations when dealing with AI in the context of law.

Class Schedule

Week/Session Summary of Activities Assessment
  • Introduction to IHL
  • Qualification of Conflicts and Applicable Law
  • Class exercises framework introduced and explained  
In line with the University’s recording policy, lectures will be recorded and made available for students on Echo360. However, lecture recordings are only an additional resource and they should not be taken as a substitute for regular attendance. If a recording does fail, there is no guarantee a replacement recording will be provided.This class is designed to teach IHL through a combination of structured lectures and class exercises that require students to operationalize the law through role play and simulations. Class attendance and participation is therefore mandatory. Effort and quality of participation in the exercises throughout the 13 weeks of class will count for 40% of assessment. These class exercises will also form the basis for providing student feedback half-way through the course, i.e. 6 April 2024. 10% of assessment will be based on general class discussion.The remaining 50% of assessment will be based on an IHL research assignment of the student’s choosing, subject to the course convenor’s agreement.The course may also involve presentations by practitioners in the field.In principle, lectures will be recorded, except where invited experts request otherwise.This course deals with situations of serious violence and may not be suitable for all students. Warnings will be given in advance to exposure to real life material that may be distressing. 
2 Class exercise Protected Persons (Part 1 – Wounded and sick in the Field)
3 •      Class exercise Protected Persons (Part 2 – Wounded, sick and shipwrecked)
4 •      Class exercise Protected Persons (Part 3 –Prisoners of War)
5 •      Class exercise Protected Persons (Part 4 – Civilians)
6 •      Class exercise/guest presentation Deep dive – IHL and the 'War on Terror'
7 •      Class exercise/guest presentation Deep dive - Detention in Non-International Armed Conflict by State and Non-State Actors
8 •      Class exercise Conduct of Hostilities
9 Class exercise The Means of Warfare: Weapons
10 Class exercise Deep dive - Autonomous weapons and robotic warfare
11 Class exercise/guest presentation Mechanisms to Address Violations of the Law
12 Class exercise Deep dive – Reasonable commander test and mistake of fact
13 Deep dive - Accountability for Australian war crimes in Afghanistan

Tutorial Registration

ANU utilises MyTimetable to enable students to view the timetable for their enrolled courses, browse, then self-allocate to small teaching activities / tutorials so they can better plan their time. Find out more on the Timetable webpage.

Assessment Summary

Assessment task Value Due Date Return of assessment Learning Outcomes
General class participation 10 % * 23/05/2024 1,2,3
Class exercises – operationalising the law 40 % * 23/05/2024 2,3
Research assignment 50 % 06/06/2024 20/06/2024 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 Integrity 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 Academic Skills 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.

Assessment Task 1

Value: 10 %
Return of Assessment: 23/05/2024
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3

General class participation

Details of Task: This component of assessment requires active participation in all classes. Marks will be given for oral contributions that demonstrate you have read the materials and for thoughtful contributions to class discussions based on your understanding of the law. Marks will be based on the quality, not quantity, of your contributions.

Nature of Task: Compulsory and non-redeemable. Failure to participate will result in a mark of zero for this assessment task.

Weighting: 10%

Estimated Return Date: 23 May 2024

Assessment Criteria:

• Familiarity with and understanding of content;

• Quality of observations and interventions;

• Formulation of relevant legal arguments and reaching defensible conclusions;

• Critical evaluation of legal doctrine;

• Contribution to shared student learning;

• Contribution to learning environment; and

• Observation of class etiquette. 

Assessment Task 2

Value: 40 %
Return of Assessment: 23/05/2024
Learning Outcomes: 2,3

Class exercises – operationalising the law

Details of Task: This component of assessment is based on class exercises that require students to operationalise the law through role play and simulations. A fictitious armed conflict scenario will be used as the framework for these exercises. The scenario will be updated weekly with new “facts”. Class exercises will focus on the area of IHL taught in the previous week. Students will be placed into teams and will need to work together to determine their oral submissions in the exercises. The team’s active speaker in a particular exercise must rotate each week. Your assessment will be based on both the quality of your team’s work as a whole and on your effectiveness as an individual speaker. This means that, in addition to the subject-specific expected learning outcomes of this course, you should improve your teamwork, presentation and communication skills.

Nature of Task: Compulsory and non-redeemable. Failure to submit this assessment will result in a mark of zero for this assessment task.

Weighting: 40%

Estimated Return Date: 23 May 2024

Assessment Criteria: 

·        Knowledge of IHL and capacity to use it;

·        Knowledge of public international law and relevant branches applicable during armed conflicts;

·        Demonstrated understanding of the simulations, including the capacity to:

  • understand your role in a given scenario;
  • identify strategic issues, opportunities, and risks; and
  • consider political or foreign policy dynamics while focusing on IHL

·        Quality of interventions;

·        Formulation of relevant legal arguments and reaching defensible conclusions;

·        Contribution to shared student learning;

·        Contribution to learning environment; and

Observation of class etiquette.

Assessment Task 3

Value: 50 %
Due Date: 06/06/2024
Return of Assessment: 20/06/2024
Learning Outcomes: 1,2,3,4

Research assignment

Details of Task: Students are to conduct and submit a research assignment on an IHL issue of the student’s choosing, subject to the course convenor’s agreement. Full instructions will be provided in the first week of teaching.

Nature of Task: Compulsory and non-redeemable. Failure to submit this assessment will result in a mark of zero for this assessment task.

Weighting: 50%

Word limit: 3,000 words. The ANU College of Law's Word Length and Excess Word penalties policy can be found here .

Submission Requirement: Footnotes should be used for the referencing of all sources. All references should comply with the current edition of the Australian Guide to Legal Citation. Your submission must be made in a word processing format (.doc, .docx). PDF format will not be accepted.

Due Date: 5pm, 6 June 2024. Late submissions (without an extension) are permitted, but late penalties will apply.

Estimated Return Date: 20 June 2024

Assessment Criteria:

• Builds and sustains a clear argument in answer to the research question;

• Accurately identifies and describes the relevant law, referring to relevant treaties and case law;

• Demonstrates a capacity for critical analysis of the law, engaging with the themes of the course;

• Adopts a clear structure and provides examples to illustrate key points;

• Demonstrates independent research and refers to appropriate scholarly materials; and

• Properly references sources in accordance with the Australian Guide to Legal Citation. 

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a core part of the ANU culture as a community of scholars. The University’s students are an integral part of that community. The academic integrity principle commits all students to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support, academic integrity, and to uphold this commitment by behaving honestly, responsibly and ethically, and with respect and fairness, in scholarly practice.

The University expects all staff and students to be familiar with the academic integrity principle, the Academic Integrity Rule 2021, the Policy: Student Academic Integrity and Procedure: Student Academic Integrity, and to uphold high standards of academic integrity to ensure the quality and value of our qualifications.

The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 is a legal document that the University uses to promote academic integrity, and manage breaches of the academic integrity principle. The Policy and Procedure support the Rule by outlining overarching principles, responsibilities and processes. The Academic Integrity Rule 2021 commences on 1 December 2021 and applies to courses commencing on or after that date, as well as to research conduct occurring on or after that date. Prior to this, the Academic Misconduct Rule 2015 applies.


The University commits to assisting all students to understand how to engage in academic work in ways that are consistent with, and actively support academic integrity. All coursework students must complete the online Academic Integrity Module (Epigeum), and Higher Degree Research (HDR) students are required to complete research integrity training. The Academic Integrity website provides information about services available to assist students with their assignments, examinations and other learning activities, as well as understanding and upholding academic integrity.

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. You must ensure that you upload the correct document on the specified submission due date and time. Any document modified after the due date and time will either incur a late penalty or will NOT be accepted. Unless an exemption has been approved by the Associate Dean (Education), submission must be through Turnitin in a word processing file format (.doc, .docx). Electronic copies in .pdf file format are not acceptable.

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 not permitted. If submission of assessment tasks without an extension after the due date is not permitted, a mark of 0 will be awarded.

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 tests or examinations.

• Late submission with an extension. To ensure equity for all students, the 5% penalty per working day for late submission of work does not apply if you have been granted an extension. Where an extension is granted, the revised due date and submission time will be provided in writing. Importantly, any revised due date is inclusive of weekends and public holidays. Regardless of which day of the week the revised due date falls on, students who submit after that date will be penalised by 5% of the possible marks available for the task per 24-hour period.

Referencing Requirements

The Academic Skills website has information to assist you with your writing and assessments. The website includes information about Academic Integrity including referencing requirements for different disciplines. There is also information on Plagiarism and different ways to use source material.

Returning Assignments

For all assessment submitted online, marks and feedback will also be provided online by the return dates listed above.

Extensions and Penalties

Extensions and late submission of assessment pieces are covered by the Student Assessment (Coursework) Policy and Procedure. Extensions may be granted 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.

Resubmission of Assignments

Resubmission is not guaranteed. Please ensure that you have reviewed your submission carefully before you submit.

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).

Yasmin Naqvi

Research Interests

International humanitarian law, international criminal law, international human rights law, disarmament, fact-finding. 

Yasmin Naqvi

By Appointment

Responsible Officer: Registrar, Student Administration / Page Contact: Website Administrator / Frequently Asked Questions