Migration Control


Course Objective

(A) Subject-specific learning outcomes

The graduate has academic knowledge and insight of the:
• Core doctrines and system of administrative, criminal, human rights,
European and international law, including recent developments in the
afore-mentioned fields, in particular of the:
- Legal meaning and significance of sovereignty, including the concepts
of internal, territorial and popular sovereignty and the effect of
international and union law.
- Rule of law, including legality of state acts and the attribution of
- Regulation, including formal sources of law and standard setting and
soft law.
- Constitutionalism, including human rights law, democracy and good
- Law of organizations, in particular as regards the legal basis of
state acts and federalism, unitary state and decentralization.
- Criminal liability, in particular the criteria for criminalization,
the legal concepts of criminal liability, defenses, and actus reus and
mens rea.
- Criminal trial, in particular surrender and extradition.
• Relation between international and domestic law, as well as the
special position of European Union law.

(B ) Academic learning outcomes
Upon completion of the course the student is able to:
- Read primary legal sources, detect structures of legal reasoning and
distinguish between principled and peripheral matters of law
- Identify different legal regimes that regulate migration of refugees
and of EU citizens
- Summarize and articulate legal rules and principles, jurisprudence and
academic literature pertaining on the legal regulation of migration
- Apply legal rules to (simplified) cases involving the regulation of
- Offer interpretations of rules in light of changing circumstances

(C) Social and communication learning outcomes
The student is able to:
- Present her analysis of jurisprudence or academic writings
- Write a structured essay, based on relevant legal sources and
observations made during study visit
- Provide feedback on the work of other students
- Find relevant legal rules and principles, jurisprudence and academic
literature pertaining to migration.
- Select reliable sources to solve basic legal problems

Course Content

The Course “Migration control” studies the practice of migration control
by the nation states through the following lenses:
• Administrative law
• Criminal law
• Human rights law
• Public international law
• European law

Through a study of the phenomenon of migration, students are introduced
to a number of concepts of international, European, human rights,
administrative and criminal law, in particular to aspects of
sovereignty, to democracy and the legitimacy of rules and to principles
of good governance, and the law of surrender and extradition. The course
elaborates on elements that were introduced in previous courses, such as
jurisdiction, legality and sources of law, law of organizations and
states, and criminal liability.
The course also develops the student’s skills to reflect on the effects
of migration control and policies – both on individuals and on
societies. It addresses choices states can and do make for steering
behavior, the impact of these choices on both migrants and the society
they live in, the limits to the state’s ability to control, and the
consequences states can and do attach to failed control. In particular,
students discuss the position of foreigners during the asylum procedure
and the procedure for the return of illegally staying foreigners (both
including detention), the criminalization of illegal stay, extradition
and mass regularization. The case of an asylum seeker who is suspected
of having committed crimes against humanity (as meant in Article 1F of
the Geneva Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees) invites
students to compare and contrast exclusion from refugee status within
the context of administrative law with due process and extradition
within the context of criminal law, and the implications of human rights
for both. Similar comparisons and contrasts attach to the
criminalization of illegal stay and administrative return procedures.

Teaching Methods

Seminars (Attendance mandatory)

Method of Assessment

Written exam

General Information

Course Code R_MigCo
Credits 6 EC
Period P1
Course Level 200
Language of Tuition English
Faculty Faculty of Law
Course Coordinator prof. dr. J.M. Harte
Examiner prof. dr. J.M. Harte
Teaching Staff

Practical Information

You need to register for this course yourself