Students

MHIS2001 – Between Hope and Despair: A History of Human Rights

2021 – Session 1, Fully online/virtual

Notice

As part of Phase 3 of our return to campus plan, most units will now run tutorials, seminars and other small group activities on campus, and most will keep an online version available to those students unable to return or those who choose to continue their studies online.

To check the availability of face-to-face and online activities for your unit, please go to timetable viewer. To check detailed information on unit assessments visit your unit's iLearn space or consult your unit convenor.

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff
Alison Holland
Clare Monagle
Credit points Credit points
10
Prerequisites Prerequisites
40cp at 1000 level or above OR (10cp in HIST or MHIS or POL or POIR or MHIX or POIX units)
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description

What are human rights? How have they evolved and what is the political and cultural investment in them? How and why does a concept defined by hope and aspiration, promising human rights and freedoms, remain elusive and problematic in theory and practice? We will explore this history through social movements and legal systems, as well as politics, philosophy and rights discourses. We consider the personal and collective stories of human rights and explore key moments in their development from Magna Carta to Indigenous self-determination and climate change. The unit deepens and complicates understandings of modernity developed in MHIS1001 and MHIS1002. In addition, it provides crucial historical background, context and terminology for students interested in careers in international law, foreign aid, global politics and humanitarian organisations.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at https://students.mq.edu.au/important-dates

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  • ULO1: Understand changing ideas of human rights over time and place.
  • ULO2: Understand critiques of human rights from feminist and postcolonial perspectives.
  • ULO3: Understand the appropriate legal and political structures within which human rights are articulated.
  • ULO4: Demonstrate advanced critical writing skills in making sustained and evidence-based arguments about the past.

General Assessment Information

Unless a Special Consideration request has been submitted and approved, (a) a penalty for lateness will apply – two (2) marks out of 100 will be deducted per day for assignments submitted after the due date – and (b) no assignment will be accepted more than seven (7) days (incl. weekends) after the original submission deadline. No late submissions will be accepted for timed assessments – e.g. quizzes, online tests.

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Hurdle Due
Weekly quizzes 20% No Weeks 3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12
Research Essay 50% No Week 13
Article analysis 30% No Week 6

Weekly quizzes

Assessment Type 1: Quiz/Test
Indicative Time on Task 2: 1 hours
Due: Weeks 3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10,11,12
Weighting: 20%

 

Each week students will be given an online quiz, based on the lecture and the readings. This task usually ensures adequate student preparation, kicks off good tute discussions, and enables us to identify any writing issues.

 


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Understand changing ideas of human rights over time and place.
  • Understand critiques of human rights from feminist and postcolonial perspectives.
  • Understand the appropriate legal and political structures within which human rights are articulated.
  • Demonstrate advanced critical writing skills in making sustained and evidence-based arguments about the past.

Research Essay

Assessment Type 1: Essay
Indicative Time on Task 2: 44 hours
Due: Week 13
Weighting: 50%

 

Students are expected to develop their own research essay question in consultation with teachers. Essays should include reference to at least four primary sources and ten secondary sources. The ‘further reading’ lists in the unit guide will be the best place to start research. The point of this task is to hone your research skills; hone your ability to make a sustained argument with evidence; and hone your ability to write persuasively. Refer to the history essay-writing guide on iLearn for information about argumentation and form. (3000 words).

 


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Understand changing ideas of human rights over time and place.
  • Understand critiques of human rights from feminist and postcolonial perspectives.
  • Understand the appropriate legal and political structures within which human rights are articulated.
  • Demonstrate advanced critical writing skills in making sustained and evidence-based arguments about the past.

Article analysis

Assessment Type 1: Essay
Indicative Time on Task 2: 30 hours
Due: Week 6
Weighting: 30%

 

Students will locate a recent article (last 12 months) in the media about human rights somewhere in the world. They are then asked to offer a close readings of the article. They will need to identify and discuss the larger human-rights context and ideology behind the story. This assessment task helps students note their development in learning about human rights and prepare for the larger research essays to come in terms of critical analysis and writing. (1500 words).

 


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Understand changing ideas of human rights over time and place.
  • Understand critiques of human rights from feminist and postcolonial perspectives.
  • Understand the appropriate legal and political structures within which human rights are articulated.
  • Demonstrate advanced critical writing skills in making sustained and evidence-based arguments about the past.

1 If you need help with your assignment, please contact:

  • the academic teaching staff in your unit for guidance in understanding or completing this type of assessment
  • the Learning Skills Unit for academic skills support.

2 Indicative time-on-task is an estimate of the time required for completion of the assessment task and is subject to individual variation

Delivery and Resources

Lectures will be pre-recorded and available on ilearn. Tutorials for external students will be held via the forum function on ilearn.

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central (https://policies.mq.edu.au). Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Students seeking more policy resources can visit Student Policies (https://students.mq.edu.au/support/study/policies). It is your one-stop-shop for the key policies you need to know about throughout your undergraduate student journey.

To find other policies relating to Teaching and Learning, visit Policy Central (https://policies.mq.edu.au) and use the search tool.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/admin/other-resources/student-conduct

Results

Results published on platform other than eStudent, (eg. iLearn, Coursera etc.) or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au or if you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to help you improve your marks and take control of your study.

The Library provides online and face to face support to help you find and use relevant information resources. 

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

If you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.