LLM Programme

The taught modules offered on the LLM programme vary from year to year. Please check the full list of taught modules list for details of modules running in specific academic years. We make every effort to ensure that every module will be offered, but modules are subject to change and cancellation. You are therefore advised to check this site regularly for further updates throughout the year preceding entry to the LLM programme.

Credit value: 15 credits (6 ECTS)
Module Convenor:
Dr Virginia Mantouvalou
Other Teachers:
John Hendy QC
Intercollegiate teaching: No
Teaching Method: 10 x two-hour seminars
Who may enrol: LLM students, Other UCL Masters students
Prerequisites: None
Barred module combinations: None
Core module for specialism: Human Rights Law, International Law, Public Law
Practice Assessment: To be confirmed
Assessment method for LLM students: 3,000 word coursework essay
Module Overview

Module summary

Human rights have taken on a central role in labour law debates. This module investigates the implications and the potential of the trend to frame the issues arising between employers and employees in terms of human rights. The rights concerned might be constitutional rights or rights found in regional or international declarations of human rights. The module is therefore not limited to a particular jurisdiction, but views the trend from a comparative and international perspective. The module examines this approach in relation to some illustrative rights e.g. freedom of association, the right to work, the right to privacy, freedom of religion. The cases have been selected as illustrations of issues that arise at work and how attempts to analyse them in terms of rights have been resolved (including, commonly, the rejection or suppression of a rights discourse). The module concludes with readings that critically examine this approach to employment law from policy and philosophical perspectives.

Module syllabus

Seminar 1 Introduction: Solidarity v Human Rights
Seminar 2 Rights to Associate, to Organise, to Bargain and to Strike
Seminar 3 The Right to Work and Social Rights
Seminar 4 The Right to Privacy in the Workplace
Seminar 5 The Right to Privacy Outside the Workplace
Seminar 6 The Right to Freedom of Speech or Expression and Whistleblowing
Seminar 7 Equality 1: Prohibition of discrimination
Seminar 9 The Right to Practice a Religion and Dress Codes
Seminar 9 Modern Slavery and the Rights of Migrant Workers
Seminar 10 Theories of Rights in the Workplace

Recommended materials

There is no set text. Various journal articles and book chapters will be assigned for each seminar and posted in Moodle (virtual learning environment)

Preliminary reading

Jay Youngdahl, ‘Solidarity First: Labor Rights are Not the Same as Human Rights’ New Labor Forum (18(1) 31-37 (Winter 2009) and Lance Compa, ‘Solidarity And Human Rights: A Response to Youngdahl’ New Labor Forum (18(1) 38-45 (Winter 2009) Both Available at

H Collins, Employment Law, 2nd ed, OUP, 2010, part IV

C Gearty, V Mantouvalou, Debating Social Rights, Hart, 2011

Other information: N/A
Prizes for this module: There are currently no prizes available for this module.


The application process for the 2014-15 academic session, for entry in September 2014, is now closed.

Information regarding applications for September 2015 will be updated on the website in September 2014.

IMPORTANT NOTICE : Updated 28 May 2014

The Home Office issued an update about the acceptance of ETS tests (including TOEFL). They have now confirmed that Higher Education students applying for a Tier 4 visa may use a TOEFL test taken after 17 April, if a Higher Education Institution is willing to use its academic discretion. For those students entering in September 2014, UCL will continue to accept the TOEFL even if it was taken after 17 April. However, if an applicant still needs to book a test then we recommend that they take an alternative test to TOEFL. Those who have already arranged to take a different test following the previous advice from the Home Office, we encourage you to go ahead with taking the alternative test.

The TOEFL test will continue to be accepted for 2014 entrants who have been asked to take an English language qualification as part of their offer condition, and do not need to apply for a visa to study in the UK.