law5hil humanitarian law



Not currently offered

Credit points: 15

Subject outline

This subject explains the critically important body of law that applies when states are at war and when armed groups take up arms against governments or each other. It discusses who and what may lawfully be targeted and which objects and persons the law protects. The law on hostilities and weapons will be examine dialog with the protective regime for victims. The course will assess how the law has developed, its current status and future challenges.

SchoolLa Trobe Law School

Credit points15

Subject Co-ordinatorMarc Trabsky

Available to Study Abroad StudentsYes

Subject year levelYear Level 5 - Masters

Exchange StudentsYes

Subject particulars

Subject rules

Prerequisites Must be enrolled in LMJD; LMLAW; LMLE;LMGBL; LML or have permission of the Law School Director of Postgraduate (Coursework) Programs

Co-requisites NA

Incompatible subjects NA

Equivalent subjects NA

Special conditions NA

Learning resources


Resource TypeTitleResource RequirementAuthor and YearPublisher

Graduate capabilities & intended learning outcomes

01. Critically evaluate key concepts relating to international humanitarian law

Lectures, problem solving in work groups, presentation of solutions in plenary and subsequent discussion and evaluation to understand the context, significance and meaning of the legal principles and rules. Students are required to apply the acquired principles, rules and manners of expression in discussion and written settings; to identify and analyse key concepts involving reading and evaluation of primary and secondary legal materials. Assessment questions addressed in essays.

02. Critique the adequacy of principles and rules of international law relating to warfare

Structure of the law in various environments explained in lectures; student work group problems illustrate practical application of the rules; treaty and customary law provisions clarified and evaluated during in-class discussions. Case materials, Manuals and other sources introduced.

03. Integrate international legal principles and rules with broader principles of law to achieve solutions to complex fact-based or interpretive problems

Argument development and evaluation achieved through discussion of practical problems initially in work groups and thereafter in plenary. Individual student reading of international law provisions, case reports and other materials to deepen understanding of relevant concepts.

04. Critically evaluate how the disparate elements of Humanitarian International Law interact and assess some of the gaps in current legal provision and their significance

Argument development and evaluation modelled through presentation by students of work group solutions to set seminar problems. Individual student reading of primary texts and other materials and in-class discussions to clarify and evaluate the scope and detail of the law.

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