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Unit Summary

Unit type

UG Coursework Unit

Credit points

12

Unit aim

Examines the principles of human rights from international, Australian, comparative and theoretical perspectives. Discusses the international human rights regime, the method by which human rights are protected and the question of whether Australia should have its own Constitutional or legislative Bill of Rights. Will analyse the common theoretical critiques of human rights and will study some selected human rights issues.

Unit content

Part 1 – Introduction to the international human rights system
Topic 1 The international human rights legal system – an overview
Topic 2 The historical and philosophical foundation of human rights
Topic 3 A hierarchy of rights?
Topic 4 Critiques of human rights
 
Part 2 – Human rights in Australia
Topic 5 Express and implied constitutional rights and the role of the common law in Australia
Topic 6 Specific legislative provisions for human rights protection in Australia
Topic 7 Should Australia have a Charter of Rights?
 
Part 3 – Specific human rights issues
Topic 8 The right to privacy
Topic 9 The human rights of Indigenous Australians
Topic 10 The human rights of asylum seekers

Learning outcomes

Unit Learning Outcomes express learning achievement in terms of what a student should know, understand and be able to do on completion of a unit. These outcomes are aligned with the graduate attributes. The unit learning outcomes and graduate attributes are also the basis of evaluating prior learning.

On completion of this unit, students should be able to:
1 recognise the main features of the international human rights legal regime
2 appraise the express and implied constitutional protection of human rights in Australia, and assess the other forms of protection of human rights in the Australian legal and political system
3 identify and analyse the arguments for and against whether Australia should have a constitutional or a legislative Bill of Rights
4 give an account of and discuss various topical human rights issues.

On completion of this unit, students should be able to:

  1. recognise the main features of the international human rights legal regime
  2. appraise the express and implied constitutional protection of human rights in Australia, and assess the other forms of protection of human rights in the Australian legal and political system
  3. identify and analyse the arguments for and against whether Australia should have a constitutional or a legislative Bill of Rights
  4. give an account of and discuss various topical human rights issues.

Prescribed texts

  • No prescribed texts.
Prescribed texts may change in future teaching periods.