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Principles of Public International Law




Admissions requirements



This course is an introduction to the field of public international law. The course covers major topics in this field, including sources of international law (treaties and customary international law); subjects (States and international organizations); the law of State responsibility; the prohibition on the use of force; and international dispute settlement. The course emphasizes learning how to read and understand international law instruments, such as states multilateral treaties and judgments of the International Court of Justice.

Week 1
Lecture 1: Introduction
Lecture 2: Introduction
Week 2
Lecture 1: Sources of International Law
Lecture 2: Sources of International Law
Week 3
Lecture 1: Subjects of International Law
Lecture 2: Subjects of International Law
Week 4
Lecture 1: State Responsibility
Lecture 2: State Responsibility
Week 5
Lecture 1: Prohibition on the Use of Force
Lecture 2: Jurisdiction
Week 6
Lecture 1: Immunities
Lecture 2: Immunities
Week 7
Lecture 1: International Dispute Settlement
Lecture 2: International Criminal Law
Week 8

Course objectives

After successful completion of the course, students are able to, in terms of skills:

  • identify the international legal implications of current world events as reported in the media.

  • identify, explain, and discuss relevant international legal rules and the facts and legal reasoning of judgments.

  • apply and interpret treaty provisions and other legal rules,

  • develop the ability to apply legal rules to a given set of facts.
    After successful completion of the course, students are able to, in terms of knowledge:

  • explain fundamental concepts, issues and topics in the field of public international law.
    This course aims to prepare students for further studies within the Global Justice major at LUC.


Once available, timetables will be published in the e-Prospectus.

Mode of instruction

Classes will consist of both lectures and presentations on and discussions of assigned judgments. Students are required to have read the relevant section of the textbooks (see ‘Literature’ section below), the assigned excerpts from judgments, and any other additional reading.


Assessment: Short essay
Learning aim: Identifying international legal implications of world events
Percentage: 15%
Deadline: Weeks 2

Assessment: Presentation and class participation
Learning aim: Explain and discuss legal rules, concepts, and judgments; describing facts and explaining legal reasoning
Percentage: 15%
Deadline: Weeks 1-7

Assessment: Take-home essay/case note
Learning aim: Applying legal rules to novel factual scenarios; developing legal writing skills
Percentage: 30%
Deadline: Weeks 5

Assessment: Final examination
Learning aim: Comprehensive understanding of the course materials
Percentage: 40%
Deadline: Week 8


There will be a Blackboard site available for this course. Students will be enrolled at least one week before the start of classes.

Reading list

  • Anders Henriksen, International Law (Oxford University Press, 2nd ed, 2019);

  • T.M.C. Asser Institute (ed), Elementary International Law (T.M.C. Asser Institute (most recent edition)).


This course is open to LUC students and LUC exchange students. Registration is coordinated by the Education Coordinator. Interested non-LUC students should contact