M.A. Vienna Master of Arts in Human Rights

  • On Campus
  • 24 months
  • EUR10300 per Year (International

    Tuition fee for the international students.

    )
    EUR10300 per Year (EEA

    European Economic Area tuition fee is applicable to the students from EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

    )
  • English ( Take IELTS test or Find a course )
| Vienna, Austria
With our newly designed Master of Arts in Human Rights the University of Vienna offers you the unique opportunity to study human rights in an international, trans-disciplinary and practice-oriented environment.

Description

No philosophical idea has had a more profound impact on international relations and world politics than human rights. Within half a century since World War II and the Holocaust, human rights developed into the only universally accepted value system of our times. The recognition of states as democratic, developed and peace-loving nations today depends on their capacity and willingness to protect human rights. Long-term dictators and brutal military rulers are increasingly being ousted and held accountable for gross and systematic violations of human rights before international criminal tribunals. Even business corporations and international organisations are judged by their human rights performance. In post-conflict situations and transitions from totalitarian to democratic rule, human rights constitute an essential element of peace-building, development and good governance. Human rights open the doors to a better world for all.

The implementation of human rights in rich and poor countries, in peace operations, development projects, transition and post-conflict situations requires highly motivated and skilled human rights experts with empathy for human beings.

With our newly designed Master of Arts in Human Rights the University of Vienna offers you the unique opportunity to study human rights in an international, trans-disciplinary and practice-oriented environment.

Aims and objectives

We aim at providing you with the scientific knowledge and the practical skills to work as a human rights expert in different professional environments.

Target group

We welcome students with at least a bachelor degree in a broad variety of academic disciplines from all world regions, with an open mind, empathy for human beings and a strong interest to experience the fascinating world of human rights.

Our philosophy

As equal members of the interdisciplinary Vienna Master of Arts in Human Rights, staff and students of the University of Vienna we welcome all academic disciplines and all cultures.

We are dedicated to supporting and maintaining a community in which the universal principles of human rights are shared through the common enterprise of intellectual curiosity and research as well as of the translation of the acquired knowledge into action for the betterment of the human rights situation.

Spirit and Culture of the Vienna Master of Arts in Human Rights

We strive for a sense of community in which the individual growth of all members is advanced through the cultivation of mutual respect, tolerance, and understanding.

The Vienna Master of Arts in Human Rights values and encourages individuality while also affirming the community dimensions of academic life. Our human rights community shall provide a structure within which individual freedoms may flourish without threatening the freedoms of other fellow students, teaching staff and the academic management team of this Vienna Master of Arts in Human Rights.

The Master Programme is committed to honest, open, and equitable engagement with all, while respecting differences in religion, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation, abilities and needs among others. We seek to promote an academic and social environment that in its diversity is integral to the educational purposes of the institution, by engaging in team building exercises, study trips and workshops while cultivating an open culture of communication.
Modules

We provide you with an innovative and interdisciplinary approach to human rights, with a strong emphasis on practice. Since we keep the number of students small, supervision is very personal so you get the most out of the programme. Your interests are taken very seriously - you have the opportunity to determine certain contents of your courses.

Faculty

We offer you a broad variety of courses taught by university professors and academic lecturers from various disciplines as well as human rights practitioners working in international organisations, human rights institutes, the corporate sector, development agencies and civil society organisations.

Field trip

We provide you with an enlightening and memorable field experience in the post-conflict situation in Kosovo, where the UN, the OSCE, the EU, NATO and other international organisations are jointly operating an international administration with a strong human rights mandate. The trip will last for one week where you stay with a local family and get the opportunity to have lively discussions about Kosovo's human rights issues with international actors, national human rights institutions, NGOs, media, universities and politicians.

Job opportunities

We will train you for a career as a human rights expert to be employed by governments, international organisations, development agencies, business corporations, research institutes and civil society organisations. You might work as an election observer, officer for human rights monitoring and capacity building in the field, diplomat, trainer, mediator, consultant, researcher etc.

Detailed Course Facts

Application deadline 1 May 2016
Tuition fee
  • EUR10300 per year ( International

    Tuition fee for the international students.

    )
  • EUR10300 per year ( EEA

    European Economic Area tuition fee is applicable to the students from EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.

    )

The tuition for the Vienna Master of Arts in Human Rights of EUR 20,600 covers both years. The tuition is not subject to VAT. Any money transfer fees for the tuition must be covered by the student.

Start date End of September 2016
Credits (ECTS) 120 ECTS
Duration full-time 24 months
Delivery mode On Campus
Educational variant Full-time

Course Content

a) Introduction to Human Rights from an Interdisciplinary Perspective

Aims of the module:

  • Knowledge of the concept of human rights
  • Understanding the inter- and transdisciplinarity of human rights
    Disciplines:Law - History - Theology - Philosophy - Anthropology - Psychology - Sociology - Political/International Relations – Media
  • Knowledge of the basic principles, structures and approaches of each discipline with regard to human rights (from a legal, historical, theological, philosophical, anthropological, psychological, sociological, political/international relations’ and media perspective)
  • Knowledge about the development of human rights
  • Ability to identify various interdisciplinary aspects of a human rights related issue and to take these into account when dealing with this issue

Courses: Introduction to Human Rights from an Interdisciplinary PerspectiveIntroduction to Human Rights from a Legal Perspective
Introduction to Human Rights from Different Perspectives
Accompanying Exercises

b) International and Regional Human Rights Systems

Aims of the module:

  • Knowledge of the various UN human rights standards as well as the human rights institutions/mechanisms of the UN system, such as the treaty monitoring bodies and procedures and the Charter based mechanisms (Human Rights Council, General Assembly, Security Council etc.)
  • Knowledge of the various human rights standards of the Council of Europe and the European Union
  • Knowledge of other regional human rights mechanisms in the context of i.e. the OSCE, the Organization of American States, the African Union, the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), and the League of Arab States
  • Ability to apply the acquired knowledge to specific cases and situations
  • Comparative knowledge of strengths and weaknesses of regional human rights standards and mechanisms, in theory as well as in practice, from an interdisciplinary point of view
  • Ability to prepare, present and defend a case during the simulation of a human rights body meeting or of an international trial

Courses: International and Regional Human Rights SystemsThe UN System and Human Rights
Regional Human Rights Systems

c) Current Human Rights Issues from an Interdisciplinary Perspective

Aims of the module:

  • Understanding the interdisciplinarity of human rights through analysing current and complex phenomena that are of outmost importance in the field of human rights
  • Knowledge of the multi-disciplinary contributions to the understanding of the causes, factors and effects of such phenomena
  • Knowledge of current human rights violations in different regions of the world, as well as the interdisciplinary analysis of its causes, factors and effect
  • Knowledge of international and regional legal instruments to protect against and prevent human rights violations
  • Acquire practical skills for ending human rights violations
  • Acquiring a professional attitude towards the complexity of dealing with human rights violations

Courses: Current Human rights Issues from an Interdisciplinary PerspectiveCurrent Human Rights Issues from an Interdisciplinary Perspective I
Current Human Rights Issues from an Interdisciplinary Perspective II
Current Human Rights Issues from an Interdisciplinary Perspective III

d) Selected Human Rights and Human Rights of Specific Groups

Aims of the module:

  • Knowledge of specific civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights
  • Understanding equality, diversity and the principle of non-discrimination
  • Knowledge of human rights of specific groups
  • Ability to apply international human rights law to specific practical cases and situations with regards to human rights of specific groups
  • Ability to identify practical problems and good practices in the implementation of human rights of specific groups
  • Understanding the relationship between human rights and peace, human rights and democracy and human rights and development
  • Knowledge of approaches on how to tackle human rights challenges in specific difficult settings, such as human rights in conflict, human rights and terrorism, human rights and poverty
  • Ability to understand and apply a human rights based approach to development, poverty reduction and other issues
  • Knowledge of specific newly emerging human rights issues, such as human rights and business, human rights and environment, human rights and climate change, as well as transcultural human rights
  • Ability to identify human rights challenges in specific difficult/emerging settings and knowledge of approaches to tackle these new human rights issues

Courses: Selected Human Rights and Human Rights of Specific GroupsSelected Human Rights
Human Rights of Specific Groups

e) Practical Human Rights Skills

Aims of the module:

  • Knowledge of practical skills required in everyday work with human rights, such as advocacy, monitoring, fact finding, reporting, human rights work in the field etc.
  • Ability to deal with practical challenges in the field of human rights
  • Ability to apply this knowledge in concrete cases that might occur in the field
  • Ability to work in an international, inter-cultural environment
  • Ability to reflect thought patterns critically against the background of other traditions and cultures
  • Ability to set up, manage and implement human rights projects

Courses: Practical Human Rights Skills Practical Human Rights Skills I
Practical Human Rights Skills II
Practical Human Rights Skills III

f) Scientific Competence

Aims of the module:

  • Knowledge of working methods to write different types of human rights papers/contributions in various disciplines
  • Ability to acquire knowledge of and to critically assess the current state of research and controversies regarding a specific human rights topic
  • Ability to conduct professional human rights research in various disciplines
  • Ability to evaluate specialised literature and sources
  • Ability to write a well-structured, well-reasoned thesis about an innovative human rights topic
  • Ability to present a human rights paper and to discuss it using academic arguments
  • Ability to reflect critically one's own academic paper

Courses: Scientific CompetenceScientific Methods and Theories I
Scientific Methods and Theories II
Presentation and Discussion of Thesis Proposals

g) Internship Related Courses

Aims of the module:

  • Ability to put into practice the knowledge that has been acquired in the first academic year by undertaking a semester abroad or an internship in the field of human rights
  • Ability to identify relevant and current developments in the field of human rights and to make use of this information for the master thesis
  • Ability to provide analyses of these developments/events and discuss them interactively within a moderated online platform with the supervisor
  • Ability to present the experiences made throughout the internship/semester abroad in front of an audience and to put the experience into writing (internship report)

Courses: Internship Related CoursesInternship/research placement
Human Rights Online Platform
Reflections of Internship/Exchange Semester
Presentation of Internship Reports

h) Master's Thesis

Courses: Master's ThesisMaster's Thesis (Research, Development and Writing)
Master's Thesis (Defensio)

Requirements

The number of places on the course is limited. Admission to the course is based on availability, timely application, qualifications of the applicant and is also subject to the general admission requirements of the University of Vienna. After successful admission to the course, students must enrol at the University of Vienna within the scheduled dates.

In addition to these formal admission requirements ranking is based on candidates meeting the following criteria:

  • Candidates must hold at least a bachelor degree (180 ECTS) of any discipline. Persons without any academic degree need to prove five years of working experience in a field related to human rights.
  • Those who do not have English as their first language or who did not graduate from an English language programme must include evidence of English language proficiency (e.g. TOEFL or IELTS – see below).
  • Experience in the human rights field is not compulsory, but an asset

Language Proficiency

All classes will be taught in English.
All non-native speakers must demonstrate their English proficiency with:

1. TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language)
Minimum requirement of internet based test: 100
Reading: 20, Listening: 20, Speaking: 20, Writing: 20
2. IELTS (International English Testing System)
Minimum requirement: 6.5
3. CAE (Cambridge English Language Assessment)
Minimum requirement: A-C
Students with a first or second degree with the English language as a medium of instruction do not have to submit a TOEFL or IELTS test report, but need a statement from their university that their education language was in English.

Work Experience

At least 5 year(s) of work experience are required.

More Information

Accreditation

The number of places on the course is limited. Admission to the course is based on availability, timely application, qualifications of the applicant and is also subject to the general admission requirements of the University of Vienna. After successful admission to the course, students must enrol at the University of Vienna within the scheduled dates.

In addition to these formal admission requirements ranking is based on candidates meeting the following criteria:

  • Candidates must hold at least a bachelor degree (180 ECTS) of any discipline. Persons without any academic degree need to prove five years of working experience in a field related to human rights.
  • Those who do not have English as their first language or who did not graduate from an English language programme must include evidence of English language proficiency (e.g. TOEFL , IELTS).
  • Experience in the human rights field is not compulsory, but an asset

For further information visit our website on http: // humanrights.univie.ac.at

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