Law 717 - International Human Rights Clinic

E. Tendayi Achiume

E. Tendayi Achiume

Professor of Law
Faculty Director, Promise Institute for Human Rights
B.A. Yale University, 2005
J.D. Yale Law School, 2008
UCLA Faculty Since 2014
Course Description:

The International Human Rights Clinic requires students to navigate international human rights law theory and practice in the service of real clients.  It has two components: clinical projects and a seminar. In groups of two to four students, clinic participants will collaborate with international human rights organizations on a variety of projects. By working with partner organizations to achieve their legal and advocacy goals, students will gain firsthand experience with international human rights lawyering and develop important skills in this regard. The seminar will provide the theoretical counterpart to students’ practical work. Through several modules, this seminar will map the field of international human rights advocacy; introduce students to some of the most contentious debates surrounding the theory and practice of international human rights law; provide students with the tools they will need to identify and address ethical concerns in the practice of international human rights law; and sharpen lawyering skills relevant to their clinic projects. Enrollment is limited to 8 students and admission to the clinic is by application. A demonstrated background in international human rights law is required. International travel is not guaranteed.

Course Learning Outcomes:

At the end of this course students will have developed:

1. an understanding of the conceptual underpinnings of different methods of international human rights legal advocacy

2. legal research and drafting skills essential in different contexts including litigation, and fact-finding and reporting

3. tools essential for identifying and addressing ethical concerns in the practice of international human rights

4. competence in basic communication skills and techniques used in working  with advocacy organizations and government officials;

5. a deeper understanding of the tension between theory and practice in social justice advocacy, and the critical thinking skills essential for resolving this tension