UCL Faculty of Laws


Human Rights in the Workplace


Programme type: Executive Education
Location: Bentham House, London
Dates: 24-27 June 2024
Duration: 4 days
Fees: £3250

The programme

Human rights law is taking an increasingly important role in the workplace. This course investigates this trend. It looks at the implications for workers, employers and businesses of framing the issues arising between employers and employees in terms of rights, as well as the challenges. The rights concerned might be constitutional rights or rights found in regional or international instruments of human rights. 

The main focus of the course is on UK law, including the Human Rights Act and European Convention on Human Rights. The course will provide knowledge and understanding of the legal frameworks and main academic debates, and more in depth debates on human rights law in the workplace. Participants will develop critical skills by evaluating the rules, policies and principles of this evolving and increasingly important area of law and consider the role of trade unions and strategic litigation in relation to this subject; and develop their analytical skills, for example by identifying and resolving legal challenges raised by questions discussed in the sessions. 

The course examines freedom of association and the right to strike, the prohibition of slavery, servitude, forced and compulsory labour, freedom of expression, the right to work, the right to privacy and freedom of religion. The cases have been selected as illustrations of issues that arise in employment disputes and how attempts to analyse them in terms of rights have been resolved (including, commonly, the rejection or suppression of a rights discourse).

Key information

Entry requirements:

There are no formal entry requirements to our executive education programmes, however, typically our applicants will have:

  • a minimum of three years' work experience
  • a bachelor's degree or higher, or significant work experience in a relevant role(s) to the degree expectation.
  • a fluency in English (an English language test is not required for this programme, however, the programme is taught entirely in English without translation, and so you should be comfortable communicating in English.)

Who is this course for?

This course will be of interest to human resources professionals, practicing lawyers, members of employment tribunals, charities, trade unionists and others.


Upon successful completion of this course, you will:

  • Be able to exhibit a good understanding of the legal framework and challenges in the protection of human rights in the workplace; 
  • Critically appraise the law and evaluate the rules studied on their own terms, for example for clarity, consistency and coherence; 
  • Relate the legal rules to the experience in practice of those whom they most directly concern, and particularly workers and employers; 
  • Consider challenges for workers and their organisations in bringing cases to tribunals and courts; 
  • Suggest improvements that can be made in the protection of human rights at work. 


Key topics

Day One

  • Introduction: Solidarity v Human Rights; Sources of Human Rights at Work
  • The Right to Work - The Duty to Work 

Day Two

  • The Prohibition of Slavery, Servitude, Forced and Compulsory Labour; Migrant Workers; The UK Modern Slavery Act; Business and Human Rights
  • The Right to Organise, Collective Bargaining and Strike  

Day Three

  • Freedom of Expression and Political Association
  • Freedom of Religion and Religious Discrimination in the Workplace 

Day Four

  • The Right to Private Life at Work: Workers’ Monitoring and Surveillance in the Workplace or when Working from Home
  • The Right to Private Life Away from Work: Dismissal for Off-Duty Conduct, including Social Media Activity 
Course structure and assessments

Delegates will receive four hours of lectures/ seminars each day. There will therefore be a total of 16 hours of classroom teaching over the four days. There will be no assessment but delegates will receive a certificate of completion provided that they attend at least 12 hours (75%) of classes.  

Teaching staff

Research expertise 

The latest Research Excellence Framework positions us as the leading Law School in the UK. Key highlights include:

  • Out of 69 law faculties in the UK submitted to the 2021 REF, UCL Laws has been rated as the leading institution in the UK for research quality
  • UCL Laws’ 2021 REF results reflect a consistently excellent performance across all three measures of REF assessment: outputs, impact and research environment
  • The faculty has the top GPA (3.62), the highest number of overall 4* results, and the highest quality index (QI) in the UK
  • UCL Laws is ranked in the top five across all three measures (outputs, impact and research environment)

Choosing this programme will give you access to world-leading academics in their field, delivering impactful research with solid, topical and practical application.


The fees for this course are £3250. We offer discounts* for the following:

    • 20% discount for UCL students, staff and alumni
    • 15% discount for delegates from non-commercial sectors 
    • 15% discount to commercial organisations that send three or more delegates
    • 15% discount for those currently not in work

    *discounts can only be applied once if any of the above apply.