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European Migration Law


Please note that the following description of the course is only provisional and therefore subject to change.

Admission requirements

  • Background in law

  • Sufficient command of English

  • Students should be familiar with the basics of international and European law.


Migration in and to Europe is governed by European Union law, international human rights treaties and national law. This course is the first course on European Migration Law. The second course in the second half of this semester will be dedicated completely to Asylum Law. Both courses are structured in a similar way. They can be followed both or separately.
The focus in this first course will be on legal, or voluntary migration. For Member States of the European Union, the discretion to shape their own migration policy is limited by binding provisions of EU Law. Freedom of movement of persons having the nationality of Member States has since long been a primary goal of the European Union. With the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam in May 1999, legislation on immigration, regarding third country nationals, has also become a subject of Union competence. The concept of a right to family life and private life as laid down in the European Convention on Human Rights has influenced as well national policies as the interpretation of EU Law. In this course these two levels of law, EU Law and international law and their interaction will be discussed. The course program is, apart from an introductory lecture, divided into three parts each consisting of three sessions (two lectures and a working group). The introductory lecture will discuss the multilevel structure of European Migration Law and the basics of relevant European law. The three following parts concern: 1. Free movement of persons under EU law; 2. Family life and private life under article 8 ECHR; and 3. Family reunification under EU law.

Course objectives

The aim of this course is to provide students with knowledge and insight in the relation between the various levels of international and European migration law and their impact on individuals. Students learn to apply this knowledge to a migration case.

Achievement levels
After having completed this course students must be able to:

  • To discuss and analyse orally and in writing key questions concerning free movement of EU citizens and family migration, and

  • To solve a complex individual case on the basis of EU migration law and international law.

  • To approach this case both from the viewpoint of the migrant and the viewpoint of the State.

  • To write a structured legal argumentation and research independently case-law and other relevant materials and apply it to the case



Mode of instruction


  • Number of (2 hour) lectures: 7

  • Names of lecturers: Gerrie Lodder, and Mark Klaassen

  • Required preparation by students: reading the materials assigned in the prescribed literature and readers


  • Number of (2 hour) seminars: 3

  • Names of instructors: Gerrie Lodder and Mark Klaassen

  • Required preparation by students: Writing a paper (3x) and preparing an oral presenation based on this paper (1x)

Group work sessions

  • Number of (2 hour) sessions: 3

  • The group work sessions are intended to facilitate the group work. During the group work sessions, the different groups can work together in preparing their contribution for the seminar.

Other methods of instruction

  • Guest lecture in combination with the course European Migration Law

  • Number (2 hour): 1

  • Names of instructors:

  • Required preparation by students

Assessment method

You have to write three papers of approximately 2000 words and give one oral presentation based on one of the written papers. For the papers you have to solve a complex case. The oral presentation is in the format of a moot court session. The three papers count for 30% each of the final grade and the oral presentation for 10%.

Students with a final grade of 5,4 or lower who have handed in all three papers and have given the oral presentation, will be given the possibility two write one paper of approximately 5000 words. The topic of this paper will be discussed between the student and the teacher. The grade for this paper will replace the former grade.

Submission procedures
See Blackboard

Areas to be tested within the exam
There is no separate exam. The papers are about the prescribed materials in the textbook, and materials provided through Blackboard during the course.


More information on this course is offered in Blackboard.

Reading list

Obligatory course materials

  • parts of: Pieter Boeles, Maarten den Heijer, Gerrie Lodder, Kees Wouter, ‘European Migration Law’

  • additional articles (on Blackboard)

  • Legal texts (in a reader or on Blackboard)

  • Case Law (on Blackboard)

Recommended course materials

  • To be announced


Through Usis

Contact details

  • Co-ordinator: Mark Klaassen

  • Work address: KOG, room B0.05

  • Contact information: Monday and Tuesday

  • Telephone number: +31 (0)71 527 7727

  • Email:


  • Institute: Public Law

  • Department: Institute of Immigration Law

  • Room number secretary: B1.21

  • Opening hours:

  • Telephone number secretary: +31 (0)71 527 7535 (student assistant)

  • Email: (student assistant)