LAW4164 - International refugee law and practice - 2018

6 points, SCA Band 3, 0.125 EFTSL

Undergraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Chief examiner(s)

Dr Azadeh Dastyari

Unit guides



  • Term 2 2018 (On-campus)


For students who commenced their LLB (Hons) course in 2015 or later:

LAW1111; LAW1114; LAW1112; LAW1113; LAW2101; LAW2102; LAW2112; LAW2111

For students who commenced their LLB course prior to 2015: LAW1100 OR LAW1101 and LAW1102 or LAW1104


For students who commenced their LLB (Hons) course in 2015 or later: LAW3111; LAW3112


This course will explore the international protection regime for refugees including state obligations under international refugee law, human rights and the law of the sea. It will compare and contrast key concepts and practices of refugee protection, amongst receiving states. It will then address issues raised by regional responses such as deterrence measures and the externalization of border control policies. This course will examine the sources of international refugee law and the evolution of the international regime for refugee protection. It will discuss comparative implementation of the refugee definition in Europe and other jurisdictions; modification of the Refugees Convention in domestic legislation; restrictive concepts such as 'internal protection' and 'safe third country' and the development of 'complementary protection' for asylum-seekers. It will then address issues raised by regional responses and creation of 'burden sharing' arrangements between states; procedures for determination of refugee status and proposals to reformulate the refugee protection regime.


Upon completion of this unit, students should:

  1. Articulate the background and nature of international refugee law.
  2. Investigate and apply the international instruments applicable to asylum seekers, including the Refugees Convention.
  3. Critically evaluate comparative state and regional practices towards refugee applicants.
  4. Undertake legal research and reasoning to explain legal and policy issues so as to formulate reasoned and appropriate responses to legal problems in international refugee law.
  5. Develop skills of oral presentation and argumentation in an interactive class context; and
  6. Strategically apply feedback to improve capabilities and performance of tasks.


Attendance requirement: students who fail to attend at least 80% of the classes in this unit (ie who miss 3 or more classes) will receive a result of 0 N for the unit. Students who are unable to meet this requirement due to severe illness or other exceptional circumstances must make an application for in-semester special consideration with supporting documentation.

Research Assignment (3,000 words): 60%

Take Home Examination (1,500 words): 30%

Class participation: 10%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 144 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. The unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information