Human Rights

Study mode:Full-time Languages: English Duration:4 semestrs
Local:$ 12.1k / 1 Academic year(s) Foreign:$ 12.1k / 1 Academic year(s) Deadline: Mar 29, 2021
StudyQA ranking:932

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The Vienna Master of Arts in Human Rights offers you a unique opportunity to study human rights in an international, trans-disciplinary and practice-oriented environment. We aim at providing you with the scientific knowledge and the practical skills to work in governments, international organisations, development agencies, business corporations, research institutes and civil society organisations. We seek to promote an academic and social environment that engages you in team building exercises, study trips and workshops while cultivating an open culture of communication. We will accompany you through this self-reflection experience and train you for a career as a human rights expert.

This interdisciplinary and practice-oriented postgraduate programme comprises of 9 obligatory modules (88 ECTS), a Master thesis (30 ECTS) and a thesis defence (2 ECTS), adding up to 120 ECTS in total.

Overview of the Modules

  • Introduction to Human Rights from an Interdisciplinary Perspective (9 ECTS)
  • Human Rights Standards and Mechanisms of the United Nations and the Council of Europe (8 ECTS)
  • European Union, OSCE and Other Regional Human Rights Mechanisms (10 ECTS)
  • Selected Human Rights (16 ECTS)
  • Human Rights of Specific Groups (10 ECTS)
  • Human Rights in Context and New Challenges (8 ECTS)
  • Practical Human Rights Skills (4 ECTS)
  • Scientific Competence (7 ECTS)
  • The Use of New Media as a Means of Scientific Competence (16 ECTS)


  1. Candidates must hold at least a bachelor degree (180 ECTS) of any discipline. Persons without any academic degree need to prove five years of working experience in a field related to human rights;
  2. Excellent command of written and spoken English;
  3. Experience in the human rights field is not compulsory, but an asset.

Language Proficiency

Those whose native language is not English or who did not complete an academic degree where English language was the medium of instruction have to provide one of the following English language tests:

  • TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language). Minimum requirement of internet based test: 100; Reading: 20, Listening: 20, Speaking: 20, Writing: 20;
  • IELTS (International English Testing System). Minimum requirement: 6.5;
  • CAE (Cambridge English Language Assessment). Minimum requirement: A-C.

All applicants need to submit an excerpt of a few pages of an English paperthey wrote. It can be an essay, scientific paper, publication, etc. of any topic and should be at least two A4 pages long (max. 10 pages). Applicants may use material they have written during their studies.

Scholarships and grants related to the programme (provided by organizations other than the university):


Students may be awarded an Erasmus+ EU grant to help cover the travel and subsistence costs incurred in connection with their study period abroad.

Erasmus+ students - whether or not they receive an Erasmus+ EU grant - are exempted from paying fees for tuition, registration, examinations and access to laboratory and library facilities at the host institution.

Federal Aid for Students - Study Grant 

The federal aid measures of Austrian study financing can be divided into two sections: transfer payments, which students receive directly in cash (direct study financing), and expenses which students benefit from either by transfer payments to the students’ parents or non-cash benefits (indirect study financing).

Direct Federal Aid for Students

As a rule, direct federal aid to students is only granted on the basis of differentiated social criteria and only in cases of concurrent academic advancement. There are only a few cases of direct federal aid awarded to students purely on the basis of performance criteria. 

If you are a non-Austrian citizen, you must fulfil some special conditions to be granted equal status with Austrian citizens regarding all kinds of direct federal aid for students. Due to the complexity of the legal parameters it is mandatory that non-Austrian citizens contact the responsible study grant department for further information! 

  • Study grants
  • Grant near completion of studies
  • Study allowance for tuition fees
  • Student financial aid
  • Transport cost allowance
  • Child care subsidy
  • Insurance cost subsidy
  • Performance-related grants
  • Mobility grant
  • Incentive grants
  • Grants for study abroad (Travel cost allowance, Subsidies for language courses)
  • Orphan’s pension for students
  • Subsidized loans 

Indirect Federal Aid for Students 

Indirect federal aid for students, which represents an important component of social support during the course of studies, consists mainly of financial resources made available to students’ parents (and/or students via their parents). The legally determined obligation of the parents to care for their children until they developed a capacity for self-preservation constitutes the foundation of entitlement to this type of financial aid. Federal aid for students should provide support to parents in this effort. There are subsidies designed to be made available to students by subsidies for or reductions of certain expenses. The supportive character of these measures is indicated by the fact that indirect federal aid for children usually terminates at the end of a child’s 18th year of age. In case of students this period may be extended to the age limit of 24 or 25 years. 


Internship/Studying Abroad

In the course of the third semester we give you the opportunity to do either in-depth research for your Master thesis at one of our partner universities in Africa, America, Asia, Europe and Oceania or to do an internship at an intergovernmental or a non-governmental organisation active in the field of human rights, e.g. in Vienna such as the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights and certain departments at the OSCE or the UN office in Vienna.

This internship will also be connected to the topic of your Master thesis.

Instead of an internship you can also choose to do research abroad at one of ourpartner universities in Africa, America, Asia, Europe and Oceania.

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