Human Rights and Citizenship


Course Objective

After successfully taking this course you will be able to:
• Analyse and evaluate the multi-faceted and changing character of
citizenship and nationality;
• Recognise and explain the variety of rights that are connected to
(European) citizenship and/or national membership;
• Critically engage with the concept of ‘integration’ and analyse the
assimilationist shift of mandatory integration measures;
• Scrutinize the temporal dimension of citizenship and the assumed
relation between the migrant, the citizen and time;
• Thoroughly scrutinise the reading material and being able to engage
with the literature in essays;
• Formulate your own opinion on the central issues of this course
well-informed by the literature and case-law.

Course Content

What and who is a citizen? How does a migrant become a citizen? Which
rights do migrants have? And how do these rights develop over time?
These are seemingly simple questions, but upon close scrutiny the
relation between the citizen and an alien appears to be rather puzzling.
Migrants might for example enjoy all kinds of civil rights, while
certain citizens might feel treated as aliens.
In this course we investigate which rights can be invoked by nationals
and by migrants. We will address the different understandings of
citizenship and nationality, the concept of and the rights attached to
European citizenship, the difference that having or not having national
membership makes, the possibility of being joined by family members from
abroad, the concept of ‘integration’ and the relation all these
different aspects of citizenship have with time. These issues will be
addressed in weekly lectures and assignments.

Teaching Methods

Weekly lectures, obligatory weekly assignments.

Method of Assessment

Written exam. Re-examination might be an oral exam, depending on the
number of participants. Submission of weekly assignments is required for
taking the exam.


Will be announced on Canvas.

Target Audience

Apart from law students of the VU, the course is also available for:
Students from other universities/faculties
Exchange students
Contractor (students who pay for one course)

General Information

Course Code R_HumRC
Credits 6 EC
Period P2
Course Level 300
Language of Tuition English
Faculty Faculty of Law
Course Coordinator mr. dr. M.C. Stronks
Examiner mr. dr. M.C. Stronks
Teaching Staff mr. dr. M.C. Stronks
dr. G.R. Jones

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself

Teaching Methods Study Group, Tutorial
Target audiences

This course is also available as: