Gwybodaeth Modiwlau

Module Identifier
Module Title
Academic Year
Intended for use in future years
Other Staff

Course Delivery



Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion

Learning Outcomes

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

1. Display a knowledge and understanding of the underlying rationale and methodology of this area of human rights protection at the European and international levels.

2. Display a knowledge and understanding of the relationship between human rights protection and other goals and objectives within the European and international legal orders.

3. Critically evaluate and test the arguments relating to the need for such a system of legal protection and its effectiveness on the ground in the context of both economically developed European states and poorer developing countries of the Majority World.

4. Locate and evaluate the relevant literature and materials in this field and use them in critical discussion of the subject.

5. Present critical and well-informed argument relating to the establishment and development of European and international systems of human rights protection.


1. Rights to Subsistence and Basic Welfare: The nature of the rights under discussion

- The expression of key rights in human rights law - the human right to an `adequate standard of living' - e.g. right to adequate food, housing and healthcare

- The interdependent nature of civil and political / economic and social rights - why it is not realistic to draw a clear line between the traditional categories of human rights

- Minimum requirements: the `baseline' of protection - basic needs and the reality of progressive or programmatic human rights protection

- Rights to subsistence and welfare framed in terms of negative and positive obligations and individual group rights - the expression of rights and nature of the obligations imposed upon states.

2. International Legal instruments and the Human Right to Subsistence and Basic Welfare

- The Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1948 - overview and analysis of key provisions

- The International Covenants (on Human Rights) - overview and analysis of key provisions of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights 1966 and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights 1966.

3. The European Framework and Rights to Subsistence and Basic Welfare

- The European Social Charter (Revised) 1996: overview and analysis of key provisions focusing primarily on Article 11 (the right to protection of health), Article 30 (the right to protection against poverty and social exclusion) and Article 31 (the right to housing)

- The Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union 2000: overview and analysis of key provisions encompassing a consideration of the notion of, and right to, human dignity and the practical value of rights such as the right to family and professional life (Article 33); the right to social security and social assistance (Article 34) and the right to healthcare (Article 35)

- European Community Law and Protection of European Citizens' Rights - The First Pillar and economic and social well-being in the EU.

4. Rights to subsistence and basic welfare and Vulnerable Groups

- Children and the right to an adequate standard of living - overview and analysis of key international and regional measures: (a) the rights of the child in international human rights law - the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child; (b) the European human rights framework and the rights of the child - The European Social Charter (Revised) 1996 (Articles 16 and 17) and The European Charter of Fundamental Rights 2000 (Articles 24 and 33).

Brief description

By considering key strands of what is commonly expressed as the right to an `adequate standard of living?, and evaluating the practical reality of key aspects of economic and social protection from both the international and the regional perspectives, this module will enable students to develop a critical understanding of the economic, political and practical realities of economic and social rights protection at both levels.

This module will introduce students to the human right to an adequate standard of living as expressed in core human rights instruments such as the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. Traditionally, discussion of human rights to food, housing and healthcare has tended to focus primarily on the entitlements of people living in the less privileged regions of the world. Here though, in addition to addressing core elements of the broader right from the perspective of the citizens of developing countries ? such as rights to adequate food, housing and healthcare ? students will consider evolving governmental and societal attitudes to such rights from the perspective of the relatively privileged European citizen. Thus, aside from providing students with a general overview of the codification of this key economic right, and an insight into the political and economic barriers that hinder the realization of basic human entitlements to housing, food and healthcare, the syllabus also encourages students to consider the relevance of key strands of the umbrella right closer to home.

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number N/A
Communication Written communication is developed by the presentation of information and argument in written answers and in a more informal way by the use of Blackboard to encourage communication among students and between students and staff. Oral communication skills are developed at the residential study schools. Written communication assessed only.
Improving own Learning and Performance Distance learning, by its very nature, requires strong individual learning and performance structures and this module further develops key skills in this area.
Information Technology The module is delivered almost entirely by distance learning which relies heavily on the use of electronic information resources and on-line learning and teaching.
Personal Development and Career planning Independent learning enhances time management skills. Studying the module will also develop an enhanced capacity for critical thought and the ability to work independently.
Problem solving By the examination and discussion of actual and hypothetical case studies
Research skills By analysis of relevant European and international human rights instruments and commentaries of expert bodies and academics. Students will be encouraged to read and study beyond the set module texts and to locate further materials and research findings relevant to the field.
Subject Specific Skills None.
Team work Team working skills will be encouraged and developed in group activities and discussions at the residential study schools.


This module is at CQFW Level 7