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, 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.‌

Applications and Selections

Applications are made online via the University of Galway Postgraduate Applications System

Who Teaches this Course

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

Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL)


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

Next start date

September 2024

A Level Grades ()

Average intake


QQI/FET FETAC Entry Routes

Closing Date

Please view the offer rounds website.

NFQ level

Mode of study

ECTS weighting




Course code


Course Outline

The LLM in International Criminal Law is typically a one-year master's 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 University of 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 module International Criminal Law and the dissertation are compulsory. The modules International Humanitarian Law and Procedure before International Criminal Courts and Transitional Justice are also recommended for ICL students. A wide range of subject choices is available to students, drawing on the expertise of our full-time staff and prestigious Adjunct faculty. A list of modules is available at:

 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 
  • Contemporary Issues in International Migration Law and Transnational Lawyering
  • 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

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)

OptionalLW561: Mental Health Law and Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW562: Regional Disability Law and Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW558: Legal Capacity Law and Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW556: Law and Policy on Independent Living - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW553: Inclusive Education Law and Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW551: Contemporary Challenges in Disability Law and Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW550: Advocacy and Access to Justice - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5105: Contemporary Issues in International Migration Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5106: Economic Social and Cultural Rights - 5 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5107: International Child Rights - 5 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5103: Islam and Human Rights I - 5 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5104: Islam and Human Rights II - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5109: European Migration Law - 5 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5110: International Human Rights Law Clinic - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5111: Business and Human Rights 2 - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5112: Human Rights and Global Governance - 5 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5113: The Common European Asylum System - 5 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5114: International Refugee Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW471: International Humanitarian Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5101: International Disability Human Rights Clinic - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW538: Transitional Justice - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW530: Procedure Before International Criminal Courts - 5 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW525: Counter-Terrorism and Human Rights - 5 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW439: Advocacy, Activism and Public Interest Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5117: International Human Rights Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5118: Public International Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5119: The Politics of Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5120: European Convention on Human Rights: Law and Politics - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5121: Transnational Lawyering - 5 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5123: International Peace Operations - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5116: Gender and Human Rights - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW455: Minority Rights - 5 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5124: Climate Justice - 5 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5125: International Criminal Law: Issues and Application - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW552: Foundational Theoretical Framework in Disability Law and Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5126: Critical Race Theory and Human Rights - 5 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW491: Equality Law: Principles & Thematic Application - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5209: Legal Skills: Commercial Practice, Advocacy and Dispute Resolution - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5205: Advanced Intellectual Property Law and Development - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5203: Advanced Comparative Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5206: Global Issues in Contemporary Labour Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5208: European Consumer Law and Policy - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5211: EU External Relations Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5212: Vis Moot - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW483: Advanced Legal Research & Method - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW575: Crime and Disorder - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5214: Imprisonment and Rights - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW486: Theories of Judicial Activism - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5201: EU Competition Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5204: International Commercial Property Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
OptionalLW5210: Commercial Law in Context - 10 Credits - Semester 1
RequiredLW5122: International Criminal Law - 10 Credits - Semester 1
RequiredLW450: Dissertation - 30 Credits - Semester 1

Why Choose This Course?

Career Opportunities

Students who have undertaken and successfully completed the programme tend to fall into one of four categories:

  1. those who work within the United Nations (UN) or with UN-affiliated organisations;
  2. those who work in NGO and quasi-NGOs— both human rights and development;
  3. those who work in academic institutions or pursue a PhD/JD;
  4. those who work in diplomatic or government-based work (in the human rights division of the Department of Foreign Affairs, for example).

Within these umbrella categories, students have pursued work in the ICC, Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, ICRC, the UN system (Geneva and New York), locally-based NGOs, trade and health organisations, as well as domestic law firm work that draws on international legal mechanisms and research-based work in university research centres, to name but a few.

Who’s Suited to This Course

Learning Outcomes

Transferable Skills Employers Value

Work Placement

Study Abroad

Related Student Organisations

Course Fees

Fees: EU

€8,390 full-time; €4,320 part-time (including levy) p.a. 2024/25

Fees: Tuition

€8,250 full-time; €4,250 part-time p.a. 2024/25

Fees: Student levy

€140 full-time; €70 part-time p.a. 2024/25

Fees: Non EU

€19,000 p.a. (€19,140 p.a. including levy) 2024/25

Postgraduate students in receipt of a SUSI grant—please note an F4 grant is where SUSI will pay €4,000 towards your tuition (2023/24).  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 €140.

Postgraduate fee breakdown = Tuition (EU or NON EU) + Student levy as outlined above.

Note to non-EU students: learn about the 24-month Stayback Visa here

Find out More

Professor Shane Darcy 
T: +353 91 493 947

Queries about this and other LLM programmes in the School of Law can also be directed to

What Our Students Say


Alexandre Neuman |   Inter-institutional Relations at the European Commission

I graduated from the LLM (International Criminal Law) at University of Galway in 2016. In search of international experiences, I began my career with a series of internships in several countries. For six months, I supported an NGO undertaking legal research about the Syrian conflict in the Golan Heights. Then, I spent several months in Nouakchott, Mauritania, managing a project for IOM (International Organisation for Migration). As I have always desired to work for the general interest, I succeeded to join the European Commission through an internship opportunity. I now work on home affairs issues (notably migration and Schengen), following the political and technical discussions at EU level and taking part in the decision-making process. Studying international law at University of Galway gave me the opportunity to meet incredible, passionate people from different cultures and backgrounds. It also allowed me to develop insights into the global legal system, understandings of geopolitical conflicts, and interests in peace-building, international criminal justice, and humanitarian law. In addition, it was particularly fascinating to study and live in this exciting environment.

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.