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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 distinguish between EU law and international law and explain the relation between EU migration law and the various instruments of international and the way they interact in the abstract as well as in the context of a particular case.

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

  • To solve a complex individual case on the basis of EU migration law and international law. To approach the case both from the viewpoint of the migrant and the viewpoint of the State. Students are expected 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)

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

Examination form(s)

  • Three papers to be written during the course. The oral presentation will be taking into account in the assessment of the written assignment on which it is based.

  • The final grade will be the average of the results of the three papers.

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: Gerrie Lodder

  • 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)