The MRes Human Rights Law is a pre-doctoral training programme designed to provide a critical, research led approach to the study of aspects of human rights law together with training in the key research skills appropriate for Doctoral level study. Alongside a suite of substantive modules offered in conjunction with the School’s LLM, the programme includes core modules in research design and qualitative and quantitative methods taken jointly with social science students from a range of disciplines across QMUL, Kings College London and Imperial College as part of the training offered by the ESRC funded London Interdisciplinary Social Science Doctoral Training Partnership.
The MRes Human Rights Law is an approved pathway for ESRC funding, enabling students to apply for ESRC 1+3 funding to cover both the MRes and a PhD, and successful MRes graduates to apply subsequently for ESRC +3 funding. The MRes Human Rights Law also caters more generally for those seeking to develop their ability to apply knowledge and understanding of the area of study and is an ideal preparation for those wishing to pursue more advanced research.
Why study your MRes Human Rights Law?
The School of Law has consistently been ranked in the top 10 law schools in the UK for the quality of our research and teaching, and many of our internationally recognised staff act as advisers to governments, industry and NGOs, both nationally and internationally.
The Postgraduate Law Centre is based in Lincoln’s Inn Fields, Holborn, the legal district of London, close to law firms, chambers and the Royal Courts of Justice.
- There is a very high rate of employment of our students within six months of graduation.
- You will benefit from the expertise of the law careers advisers who organise events and internship opportunities with top UK and international law firms.
- Many of our internationally recognised staff act as advisers to governments, industry, regulatory authorities and NGOs, both nationally and internationally.
- You will be able to attend a Critical Thinking and Writing in Law course to improve your writing and research in law skills.
- You will be able to take part in networking and social events run by the Queen Mary Postgraduate Law Society and upon graduating join our extensive alumni network.
You will have access to facilities and equipment at the Postgraduate School of Law Centre in Lincoln's Inn Fields, which comprises workstations, wireless internet access, projectors and a common room. The Graduate Centre at Mile End campus will also provide work areas and social spaces tailored specifically to the needs and working patterns of postgraduate students.
As well as housing the Law Library and a European Documentation Centre, the Queen Mary Library at Mile End provides access to all the main British, European and international textbooks, law reports and periodicals and also offers one of the best commercial law collections in the country. Through the University of London College network, students have access to an unrivalled range of electronic law journals and databases.
In addition, Queen Mary provides free access to extensive online databases and collections including: Lexis, Nexis, Westlaw, Justis, Eur-lex, Hein-Online, Business Source Complete, Index to Legal Periodicals, International Court of Justice Reports, Kluwer Arbitration, Oxford Scholarship Online (Law), Reports of Patent, Design and Trademark Cases, UK Statute law database and the United Nations Treaty Collection.
In addition to the Queen Mary Library and the British Library, postgraduate students are able to access the well-stocked law library at the University of London’s Institute of Advanced Legal Studies (IALS). The Institute, located at Russell Square, a few minutes’ walk from Lincoln’s Inn Fields, is one of the major law libraries worldwide. You will also have access to the University of London Library at Senate House.
The MRes Human Rights Law is currently available for one year full-time study. You will take two compulsory modules and 90 credits of electives spread between Semesters I and II followed by a dissertation of 15,000 words to be completed by the beginning of September following entry.
There are three compulsory modules:
- Dissertation (30 credits)
- Introduction to Social Science Research 1: epistemology, research design and qualitative methods. (30 credits)
- Introduction to Social Science 2: quantitative methods and data (30 credits).
Plus elective modules up to a total of 90 credits selected from the following options:
- International Human Rights Law
- The Law of the European Convention on Human Rights
- European Union Human Rights Law
- Terrorism and Human Rights
- State Crime
- Migration, Security and Human Rights
- Indigenous Rights
- International Law and Indigenous Peoples
- Human Rights of Women
- International and Comparative Social Justice
- International Law on the Rights of the Child.
A first class (1:1) honours degree (preferred) or very high 2:1 honours degree in law.
In addition to the other mandatory supporting application documents, applicants must submit the following documentation:
- two letters of reference, at least one of which must be from an academic reference, from a staff member who taught you on your most recent course of study (normally your undergraduate degree in Law or a Law-related subject
- a research proposal of between 2,000 to 3,000-words. It should identify the question that you will attempt to answer through your research (simply identifying general topic areas or subjects is not sufficient). You should also set out your research methodology (empirical, qualitative, library based etc,) and provide a bibliography of the works that you consulted in formulating your research question.
Non-native English speaking applicants will be required to demonstrate a proficiency in the English language (minimum IELTS 7.5 or above equivalent).
For detailed country specific entry requirements please visit the international section of our website. If you first language is not English, you must provide evidence of your English language proficiency. Find details on our English language entry requirements.
Learning and teaching
Students typically have two contact hours per week in each module. Within these two hours, each module has its own pattern of lectures, seminars/classes and other activities.
Learning and teaching
The School of Law promotes active learning within a context of clear learning objectives, and students are encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning. Modules have regular coursework elements and in some cases this will require collaborative group work.
The creation of informal work is generally encouraged. Clear guidance on basic supplementary reading is given. We consider it important to develop your ability to undertake basic research through both practical and theoretical means, culminating in a dissertation which develops the ability to write sustained coherent narratives. Teaching is by research-oriented staff (complemented where appropriate by visiting lecturers with professional expertise), who will combine professional knowledge of their subject with a critical attitude to its delivery. Students therefore work in a challenging and supportive environment.
Each module has an outline description, giving the aims, expected learning outcomes, assessment methods, outline syllabus and indication of primary reading.
For every hour spent in formal study you will be expected to complete a further five to six hours of independent study. Your individual study time could be spent preparing for, or following up on formal study sessions, reading, producing written work, completing projects and revising for examinations.
The direction of your individual study will be guided by the formal study sessions you attend, along with your reading lists and assignments. However, we expect you to demonstrate an active role in your own learning by reading widely and expanding your own knowledge, understanding and critical ability.
Independent study will foster in you the ability to identify your own learning needs and determine which areas you need to focus on to become proficient in your subject area. This is an important transferable skill for people who envisage going on to a research career in academia or elsewhere.
Modules are typically assessed by a combination of coursework and final examinations. There is a considerable variation across modules although some are wholly examined by coursework.
You will also be assessed on a supervised 15,000 word dissertation.
Fees are charged at a Home/EU rate for UK and EU nationals, and an overseas rate for International students - find out more about how your tuition fee status is assessed.
There are a number of sources of funding available for Masters students.
These include a significant package of competitive Queen Mary bursaries and scholarships in a range of subject areas, as well as external sources of funding.
School of Law scholarships
The School of Law offers a range of scholarships for Law Masters programmes each year. Full details are made available on the law funding page from October – November each year.
Queen Mary bursaries and scholarships
We offer a range of bursaries and scholarships for Masters students including competitive scholarships, bursaries and awards, some of which are for applicants studying specific subjects.
Read more about funding a masters
Alternative sources of funding
Home/EU students can apply for a range of other funding, such as Professional and Career Development Loans, and Employer Sponsorship, depending on their circumstances and the specific programme of study.
Overseas students may be eligible to apply for a range of external scholarships and we also provide information about relevant funding providers in your home country.
Detailed information about postgraduate funding options is available in our Postgraduate Funding Guide (pdf).
Read more about funding a masters.
Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 5079
Other financial help on offer at Queen Mary
We offer one to one specialist support on all financial and welfare issues through our Advice and Counselling Service, which you can access as soon as you have applied for a place at Queen Mary.
Our Advice and Counselling Service also has lots of Student Advice Guides on all aspects of finance including:
- Postgraduate Funding (pdf)
- Planning your budget and cutting costs (pdf)
- Part-time and vacation work (pdf)
Tel: +44 (0)20 7882 8717