Human Rights, Certificate

This is the first version of the 2024–25 General Catalog. Please check back regularly for changes. The final edition and the historical PDF will be published during the fall semester.

Learning Outcomes

Students who earn the Certificate in Human Rights will be able to:

  • critically analyze real-world global challenges from a human rights perspective;
  • articulate creative and effective solutions to real-world global challenges from interdisciplinary perspectives by applying human rights principles, advocacy strategies, and tactics grounded in the basic concepts of human dignity, non-discrimination, equality, diversity, and pluralism;
  • identify and trace the impact of the major events that have led to the formation of contemporary human rights concepts, norms, and institutions;
  • explain the historical underpinnings of international human rights advocacy and international institutions that emerged in response to doctrines of racial superiority, inequality, discrimination, imperialism, and conflict during the 20th century; 
  • identify the relevance of, difference between, and constructive potential for problem-solving using interdisciplinary academic methods and inquiries;
  • explain differences between a human rights approach and general normative or ethical approaches to an issue (i.e., how is the question “what is unjust or unfair” different from “what is a violation of human rights”?);
  • apply human rights frameworks to other fields of study, including the student’s primary major and professional work;
  • integrate concepts from other fields of study into their human rights coursework;
  • critically analyze the major scholarly debates about human rights, past and present;
  • articulate justifications of human rights frameworks and regimes as well as critiques of discourses on, and approaches to, human rights;
  • explain foundational international human rights legal concepts;
  • develop skills to interpret and apply legal norms;
  • create recommendations to improve the efficacy of violation mitigation and/or the international human rights system;
  • identify the potential and the limits of the law in advancing human rights;
  • identify human rights violations and analyze mitigation options based on existing international human rights legal frameworks;
  • identify the basic operational functions of international and domestic legal regimes involved with the promulgation, promotion, and protection of modern human rights standards;
  • analyze and evaluate the relationship of human rights to individuals, governments, corporations, and civil society organizations and analyze and evaluate the role of each in the promotion and protection of human rights and in relationship to other social priorities;
  • identify specific target audience(s) with the capacity to raise awareness about and mitigate human rights abuses and to effectively communicate desired actions and outcomes to these diverse audiences in both academic and/or non-academic settings;
  • critically analyze when and how human rights frameworks can benefit organizational and business settings;
  • develop collaborative skills, improve effective oral communication and presentation skills; and
  • develop critical thinking, reading, listening, writing, research, and analytical skills.