International and European Public Law

Study mode:On campus Study type:Full-time Languages: English
Local:$ 1.99 k / Year(s) Foreign:$ 13.6 k / Year(s)  
201–250 place StudyQA ranking:3647 Duration:12 months

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With international and European law exerting an increasing influence on the contents of national legal systems, expertise in this area is becoming sought-after by both private and public organizations.

The masters in International and European Public Law (IEPL) deals with the interplay between national, international and European Union law - focusing on the manifold ways in which the laws emanating from international organizations are influencing the legal developments within national states.

Conducted over one intensive year, this program offers students the opportunity to gain in-depth specialized knowledge in one of two fascinating areas: European Union Law or International and Human Rights Law. Both tracks are taught by experienced and highly-qualified professors and practitioners from within and outside of Tilburg Law School.

Learning is distinctly collaborative and interactive, with an emphasis on professional development. A broad and in-depth coverage of the subject material is provided, enhanced by the university's central location between two of Europe's leading legal and political centers: The Hague and Brussels.

Career perspective

The masters in International and European Public Law qualifies students to pursue challenging careers in legal practice and/or advisory functions.
Potential career paths include posts within national and international public administration, national and international non-governmental organizations (NGOs), the diplomatic service, European and international courts, multinational enterprises, and advocacy.
Dutch students who have followed the Bachelor European and International Law and who have completed the course 'Civil Procedure and Dispute Resolution' (burgerlijk procesrecht en geschiloplossing) have the full 'civil effect'.

The masters in European and International Law (IEPL) provides thorough preparation for students striving to pursue successful legal careers. Learning takes a variety of forms and includes lectures, seminars, interactive classes, presentations, and group assignments. The program is concluded with the completion of a Master thesis.

A highly relevant degree

The European Union, with its supranational powers, is interacting directly with the legal systems of its Member States in substantive as well as procedural matters. The EU is also playing an increasing role at the international level, creating obligations for its Member States. These developments are creating new and exciting opportunities as well as challenges - and a growing demand for professionals with the qualifications to address them.

Two specializations

Within the program, students have the flexibility to choose between two specializations.

The International Law and Human Rights specialization

focuses on contemporary issues in the field of International and Human Rights Law.

The European Union Law specialization

focuses on the functioning of the EU and its decision-making process, and its implications at the national and international levels.

Enthusiastic, highly-qualified teaching staff

All teachers on the program are highly qualified and enthusiastic academics with additional expertise emanating from their connections to international and European legal practice. Well-known professors from other prestigious institutes as well as practitioners, enhance learning by giving seminars on specific issues, such as US Attitudes towards International Law, the Future Protection of Indigenous Peoples, and International Law Before and After the South-African Apartheids Regime.

Ideal location

The Tilburg Law Faculty is conveniently situated right between two of Europe's most important legal and political centers, making it the ideal place to study European and international law. The Hague is one of the world's largest hosts of international organizations involved in peace and justice. It is the seat of 'inter alia' the International Court of Justice, the Peace Palace Library, the International Criminal Court, and the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, among others. Brussels is the seat of the European Commission, the EU Council of Ministers, the EU Parliament, NATO, lobby organizations, NGOs, and international law firms.

Interpersonal and professional skill development

Small class sizes and interactive teaching methods ensure a high level of participation by students during the program, as well as contact between students and their professors. Group-work develops students' interpersonal skills and team-mentality - essential for any legal career. Competencies are also developed in areas such as analysis, judgment, formulating statements, and presenting professionally. Extra-curricular activities such as study-strips, moot courts, and social events drinks, further foster the interactive climate.

Latest research and most topical issues

The department of European and International Public Law is famous for its international publications, prominent international affiliations, cooperation with leading International Law Schools, and the national and international advisory positions of its core researchers. Students in the program benefit from this profile in multiple ways: latest research is continuously fed into learning, while students are confronted with topics and ideas from the forefront of legal and meta-legal research.

Program structure

The masters in International and European Public Law comprises a minimum of 60 ECTs. Two specializations are available:

  • International Law and Human Rights
  • European Union Law

Students must follow three compulsory courses (18 ECTS) in their specialization. Four optional courses (24 ECTS), three of which must also be in the field of their specialization, can be selected from a list of electives. One elective (6 ECTS) can be selected from any of the courses on offer at Tilburg Law School.

All students must participate in the Research Lab (3 ECTS) course and work on developing a Master thesis (15 ECTS) in the field of their specialization. This is worked on throughout the year under the supervision of a professor from the European and International Law Department.

For those students applying for the program who have insufficient knowledge of either International or European law, an introductory course (3 EC) must be completed in addition to the requisite 60 ECTs.

Two Specializations

  • The International Law and Human Rights specialization focuses upon current issues in the field of international and human rights law. Students learn about the latest developments within international organizations such as the United Nations and the Council of Europe, as well as legal supervisory bodies such as the International Court of Justice and the International Criminal Court. Examples of these issues include the role of the United Nations in a divided world, the balance between the fight against terror and human rights, and human trafficking. All issues are taught from a legal perspective, and within the societal and political context within which they occur ('law in context'). The program thus aims to develop outstanding legal knowledge combined with a deep awareness of its societal relevance and implications.
  • The European Union Law specialization offers in-depth knowledge on the constitutional and economic foundations of the European integration process. Students gain a broad understanding of not only the EU itself, but its relation to member States and the rest of the world. This specialization offers advanced knowledge of the most significant EU policies, including competition, immigration, environment, social, and sport policies, also within the societal and political context within which they occur ('law in context'). Students thus analyse the European integration process and policy-making from a perspective beyond its purely legal aspects.
Bachelor’s with direct accessFor international students: Bachelor in Law, Bachelor in European studies or Bachelor in Political Science (or International Relations)

For the academic year 2013-2014 Tilburg University has 38 scholarships available for excellent international students who are admitted to a Master's program at Tilburg University (MA, MSc or LLM).

The Tilburg University Scholarship for Academic Excellence includes:

  • A scholarship of € 5000 for living expenses;
  • A partial tuition waiver of up to € 10,000 which means students will only pay a tuition fee of € 2,500

For whom?

To qualify for a Tilburg University Scholarship for Academic Excellence, you must fulfill the following admission requirements, in addition to the regular requirements for admission to a Master's program:

  • Candidates must have been (unconditionally) admitted to one of the graduate programs at Tilburg University for the academic year 2013-2014*
  • Candidates must have achieved excellent study results in their relevant (under) graduate program. As an indication, the student must have graduated with an average result of at least 8 (out of 10) or must be among the top 10% of their class
  • Candidates must hold a non-EU/EEA passport
  • Candidates should fill in the Scholarship Application Form
  • Candidates must be newly enrolled at Tilburg University

Selection criteria

On the basis of the following selection criteria, the selection committee of each school will select the recipients of the Tilburg University Scholarship for Academic Excellence:

  • The academic results in the relevant (under)graduate program
  • The quality and content of the Scholarship Application Form
  • The language test score

Tilburg University strives for a balanced participation in terms of nationality.


Tilburg University Scholarships for Academic Excellence are awarded for one academic year. Candidates applying for one of the Research Master programs will have to apply for the scholarship again for their second year of their Research Master program*.

Application procedure

To apply for a Tilburg University Scholarship for Academic Excellence you should:

  • Download the Scholarship Application Form
  • State in the application form that you graduated with an average result of at least 8 (out of 10) in a relevant (under)graduate program, by providing your calculated GPA and/or proof that you belong to the top 10% of your class
  • Send the Scholarship Application Form together with your application for the Master’s program before the Scholarship deadline of 1 April 2013
    *Please note that students starting their program in February 2014 are also eligible for the Tilburg University Scholarship for Academic Excellence, but do need to meet the deadline of 1 April 2013.
  • What happens next?

    All Tilburg University Scholarship for Academic Excellence applicants will be informed about the outcome of the Scholarship Selection Committee of their School by May 2013. Students who are granted a Tilburg University Scholarship for Academic Excellence must comply with and confirm in writing their agreement with the terms and conditions attached to the scholarship prior to the granting of the scholarship.

    Please note that the Scholarship Selection Committees usually receives more applications than it has grants, which means they can only select a minority of excellent applicants who will receive financial support. Strong candidates who do not make it to the first group of Scholarship candidates, will be put on a list of standby candidates. The School will notify these students as soon as possible – but not later than 1 August 2013 – in case a scholarship candidate withdraws his application.

    * CentER candidates are not eligible for a Tilburg University Scholarship for Academic Excellence.

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