Course Overview

The LLM in International Criminal Law provides students with an advanced understanding of the history, structures, law and practice of the various international criminal tribunals and the International Criminal Court.

Students will gain an in-depth knowledge of international criminal law, its component crimes, substantive law and key procedures.  Students will also develop an analytical approach to the relationship between other accountability mechanisms, such as truth commissions.

The LLM in International Criminal Law is of interest to those seeking to learn about the growing field of international criminal justice, the role of the International Criminal Court in international affairs and means for holding to account perpetrators of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes.

Course Highlights:

  • The Irish Centre for Human Rights is one the world’s premier university-based institutions for the study and promotion of human rights.  
  • Expert Lecturers deliver programme modules.  Our academics are internationally recognised scholars with world-class expertise and impact in the field of international criminal law. Distinguished visitors to the Centre for Human Rights have included Judge Carmel Agius, Senator Robert Badinter, Judge Maureen Harding Clark, Richard Goldstone, President Philippe Kirsch, Judge Theodor Meron, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, Judge Navanethem Pillay and Judge Kimberly Prost.
  • Field trip to the International Criminal Court in The Hague.  
  • A summer school on the International Criminal Court is run annually and students have the opportunity to attend.
  • Seminars and workshops are run in collaboration with leading international practitioners in criminal law and human rights.
  • Career Support is provided through professional workshops concentrating on internship opportunities, students CV and interview skills.  Careers in Law Week also provides an opportunity to meet with law professionals across a spectrum of specialisations. 
  • Assessment methods include essays, presentations and a research dissertation, while students also engage in research projects, presentations, group work and moot courts.

LLM Welcome

Applications and Selections

Applications are made online via the NUI Galway Postgraduate Applications System

Who Teaches this Course

In addition, every year we have a number of courses taught by adjunct and visiting lecturers.

Requirements and Assessment

Assessment for individual modules includes a combination of essays, presentations, group work and other methods. Students must also complete a research thesis/dissertation of 15,000 words.

Key Facts

Entry Requirements

Candidates must be approved by the School of Law. They should preferably hold a Level 8 degree in law or an interdisciplinary degree which includes a substantial law component and in which they have attained a minimum Second Class Honours, Grade 1 standard or its equivalent.

Additional Requirements


1 year, full-time
2 years, part-time

Next start date

September 2019

A Level Grades ()

Average intake


Closing Date

 Please view the offer rounds website.

NFQ level

Mode of study


ECTS weighting




Course code

1ML8, full-time 1ML9, part-time

Course Outline

The LLM in International Criminal Law is typically a one-year Masters programme that involves two semesters of courses and the preparation of a dissertation, although it is also available on a part-time basis over two years. The degree of Master of Law in International Criminal Law is awarded by the Faculty of Law at the National University of Ireland, Galway.

The two-year programme comprises part-time study, combining two semesters of course work the first year with a third semester the second year, devoted entirely to the research required for preparation of a final dissertation.

The Introduction to International Criminal Law and the dissertation are compulsory. International Humanitarian Law and Procedure before International Criminal Courts and Transitional Justice are also recommended for ICL students.

 Courses each year are subject to change, but may include the following:

  • African and Inter-American Regional Systems of Protecting Human Rights 
  • Business and Human Rights 
  • Children's Rights 
  • Conflict and Post-Conflict 
  • Counter-Terrorism and Human Rights 
  • Economic, Social & Cultural Rights 
  • European Convention on Human Rights 
  • European Union and Human Rights 
  • Genocide 
  • How to Argue with an Economist 
  • International Criminal Law 
  • International Criminal Procedure 
  • International Humanitarian Law (Term I) 
  • International Humanitarian Law (Term II) 
  • International Refugee Law 
  • Introduction to Human Rights Law 
  • Minority Rights 
  • Peace Support Operations 
  • Public International Law 
  • Procedure before International Criminal Courts 
  • Right to Development 
  • Transitional Justice
  • Women's Rights

Module details for the Full Time Course

Module details for the Part Time Course

Curriculum Information

Curriculum information relates to the current academic year (in most cases).
Course and module offerings and details may be subject to change.

Glossary of Terms

You must earn a defined number of credits (aka ECTS) to complete each year of your course. You do this by taking all of its required modules as well as the correct number of optional modules to obtain that year's total number of credits.
An examinable portion of a subject or course, for which you attend lectures and/or tutorials and carry out assignments. E.g. Algebra and Calculus could be modules within the subject Mathematics. Each module has a unique module code eg. MA140.
Some courses allow you to choose subjects, where related modules are grouped together. Subjects have their own required number of credits, so you must take all that subject's required modules and may also need to obtain the remainder of the subject's total credits by choosing from its available optional modules.
A module you may choose to study.
A module that you must study if you choose this course (or subject).
Required Core Subject
A subject you must study because it's integral to that course.
Most courses have 2 semesters (aka terms) per year, so a three-year course will have six semesters in total. For clarity, this page will refer to the first semester of year 2 as 'Semester 3'.

Year 1 (90 Credits)

Optional LW561: Mental Health Law and Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 1
Optional LW566: Immigration Law: between sovereignty and equality - 10 Credits - Semester 1
Optional LW553: Inclusive Education Law and Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 1
Optional LW551: Contemporary Challenges in Disability Law and Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 1
Optional LW509: Universal Environments - 10 Credits - Semester 1
Optional LW562: Regional Disability Law and Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 1
Optional LW558: Legal Capacity Law and Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 1
Optional LW556: Law and Policy on Independent Living - 10 Credits - Semester 1
Optional LW550: Advocacy and Access to Justice - 10 Credits - Semester 1
Optional LW508: Minors, Minority Groups & the Criminal Justice System - 10 Credits - Semester 1
Optional LW5108: Contemporary Issues in Child and Family Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
Optional LW575: Crime and Disorder - 10 Credits - Semester 1
Required LW484: Law, Regulation & Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 1
Optional LW496: Local Government Law - 10 Credits - Semester 2
Optional LW493: The Criminal Jury - 10 Credits - Semester 2
Optional LW491: Equality Law: Principles & Thematic Application - 10 Credits - Semester 2
Optional LW488: Processes of Law Reform - 10 Credits - Semester 2
Optional LW486: Theories of Judical Activism - 10 Credits - Semester 2
Optional LW485: Sentencing & Penal Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 2
Optional LW439: Advocacy, Activism and Public Interest Law - 10 Credits - Semester 2
Required LW450: Dissertation - 30 Credits - Semester 2
Required LW483: Advanced Legal Research & Method - 10 Credits - Semester 2

Why Choose This Course?

Career Opportunities

Students who have undertaken and successfully completed the programme tend to follow careers international criminal tribunals, United Nations (UN) or with UN-affiliated organisations, with NGO and quasi-NGOs, in the areas of international justice and human rights. 

Graduates have also progressed to diplomatic or government-based work for example in the human rights division of the Department of Foreign Affairs.  The programme also provides a foundation for further studies through the structured PhD in human rights offered by the Irish Centre for Human Rights.

Who’s Suited to This Course

Learning Outcomes


Work Placement

Study Abroad

Related Student Organisations

Course Fees

Fees: EU

€7,000 p.a. 2019/20

Fees: Tuition

€6,776 p.a. 2019/20

Fees: Student levy

€224 p.a. 2019/20

Fees: Non EU

€15,500 p.a. 2019/20
Postgraduate students in receipt of a SUSI grant—please note an F4 grant is where SUSI will pay €2,000 towards your tuition.  You will be liable for the remainder of the total fee.  An F5 grant is where SUSI will pay TUITION up to a maximum of €6,270.  SUSI will not cover the student levy of €224.

Find out More

Dr Shane Darcy (Programme Director)
T: +353 91 493947

What Our Students Say


Cécile Genoud |    

The LL.M. in International Criminal Law is a unique program that intertwines international criminal and human rights law at the same time. There is a great offer of seminars and many guest lecturers with field experience, which is very interesting. I really have the feeling that my lecturers have a passion for teaching and are truly interested in interacting with me.