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Migration Law and Policy in the EU


Admission requirements

Admission to the Master International Relations, track European Union Studies.


Freedom of movement of persons having the nationality of Member States of the European Union has since long been a primary goal of the European Union. With the entry into force of the Treaty of Amsterdam in May 1999, legislation on immigration and asylum matters, regarding third country nationals, has also become an object of Union competence. Since 1999, a number of Regulations and Directives on asylum, family reunification and other relevant subjects have been adopted. The discretion for Member States of the European Union to regulate the entrance, stay and return of third country nationals has gradually been limited by the entering into force of new measures in the field of asylum and immigration. This discretion is also limited by human rights treaties. Human rights play a predominant role in immigration law. Important treaties like the Geneva Convention on the status of refugees, the European Convention on Human Rights, the UN Treaty on the rights of the Child and the UN Treaty against Torture, limit the discretion of states in shaping immigration policies.
This course focusses mainly on rules related to third country nationals. This will be done by centering on five themes within European Migration Law: (1.) rights of asylum seekers and refugees; (2.) migration control; (3) family reunification and long term residence; (4.) return; (5) migration and Roma in the EU.

Course objectives

Students will gain insight in the relation between the various levels of international and national migration law and their impact on individuals and the impact on the Member States of the European Union. They learn to develop an argument from different points of view and present this in a structured written essay or in an oral presentation.


See the website.

Mode of instruction


Course Load

Total course load for the course: 5 EC is 140 hours.

  • Hours spent on attending seminars (attendance is compulsory): 4 hours per week x 6 weeks = 24 hours

  • Time for studying the compulsory literature and preparation for the lectures: 6 hours per week x 6 = 36 hours

  • Preparation for the paper: 80 hours

Assessment method

  • Presentation

  • Essays


Students must write four essays of approximately 1500 words and give one presentation.
The final mark will be based on an assessment of the four essays and one presentation (each accounting for 20% of the final grade).


Retake paper: resubmit three weeks after the grade has been made known. In order to be eligible for the retake paper, students have to have failed the course.

Exam review

How and when an exam review will take place will be disclosed together with the publication of the exam results at the latest. If a student requests a review within 30 days after publication of the exam results, an exam review will have to be organized.

Reading list

A reading list will be published on Blackboard.


Blackboard will be used for this course.


Via uSis.


Mw. G.G. Lodder, L.L.M. MA