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Democracy, Human Rights and Sustainability: Global Perspectives in Education, 7.5 Credits

Swedish name: Demokrati, mänskliga rättigheter och hållbar utveckling: globala perspektiv i utbildning

This syllabus is valid: 2017-11-27 valid to 2022-05-29 (newer version of the syllabus exists)

Course code: 6PE194

Credit points: 7.5

Education level: First cycle

Grading scale: VG Pass with distinction, G Pass, U Fail

Responsible department: Department of Education

Established by: Head of Department of Education, 2015-08-31

Revised by: Head of Department of Education, 2017-11-20


The three main fields of study are democracy, human rights and sustainability. Basic prerequisites for democracy are highlighted and discussed. Human rights are studied and analyzed historically, politically and from a juridical point of view.  Different theoretical perspectives within the field of sustainable development are studied from both international and Swedish perspectives. The main fields of study are treated in global perspectives and in relation to current topics in education.

Expected learning outcomes

After the course the students should have acquired competence to:

Knowledge and understanding
  • describe and discuss current challenges for democracy
  • describe the history of Human Rights, their preconditions and possible threats in an international context

Skills and ability
  • analyze problems and different interpretations in the discourse of human rights

Values and attitudes
  • identify and critically examine current fields of debate related to democracy, human rights and sustainability

Required Knowledge

General qualifications for university studies. No demands for knowledge in Swedish as the course is given in English.

Form of instruction

The teaching forms are lectures, seminars and workshops.

Examination modes

For examination the student shall participate in examining seminars (in case the course is web based so are the seminars), writings short essays, and produce a written assignment on a chosen topic, which shall be approved by the course instructor, within the frame-work of the course. If special reasons exist, the examiner has the right to decide on another form of examination.

To get a pass all examining tasks must be approved. To get a Pass with distinction the written assignment must in addition be graded as VG (pass with distinction), and special focus is placed on the student´s ability to problematize and analyze the content of the course. The final grade is the examiners balanced assessment of the student´s results. The final grades are U (Fail), G (Pass) and VG (Pass with distinction).

A student who has not been approved at an ordinary examination shall be offered a scheduled re-sit examination in close connection to the course (within two months). A third examination opportunity is offered within a year from the ordinary examination.

If examinations or compulsory sessions cannot be repeated in accordance with current rules for re-examination, they may be replaced by other forms of assignments. The extent and content of such an assignment shall be in proportion to the missing compulsory sessions. A student who has failed two different assignments in a course or a part of a course is entitled to get a new examiner, if not exceptional reasons oppose this (HF 6 chap 11b §). In any such case the student must get in contact with the Director of Studies at the department.

Students who receive the grade “Fail” at the third examination are requested to assign to the examinations the next time the course is given. Re-examinations based on the same curriculum are guaranteed within two years after the first course registration.

Earlier studies that correspond to the course contents may require credit transfer. The review is individual. For more information, contact the Study Counselor.


Valid from: 2017 week 48

Bajaj Monisha
Human Rights Education: Ideology, Location, and Approaches
Human Rights Quarterly, Volume 33, Number 2, May 2011, pp. 481–508. The Johns Hopkins University Press :

Bradshaw Rachel
Democratic Teaching. An Incomplete Job Description
Democracy & Education, Vol 22, No 2 : 2014 :

Dahl Robert A.
On democracy
[New ed.] : New Haven ;a London : Yale University Press : 2000 : 217 s. :
ISBN: 0-300-08455-2 (pbk)
Search the University Library catalogue

Donnelly Jack
The Relative Universality of Human Rights
Human Rights Quarterly, 29, 281–306. The Johns Hopkins University Press : 2007 :

Plattner Marc, F
Is Democracy in Decline?
Journal of Democracy, Volume 26, Number 1, January 2015, pp. 5-10 : 2015 :

Stoddard Jeremy
The Need for Media Education in Democratic Education
Democracy & Education, Vol 22, No 1. : 2014 :

“All Human Rights for All”: The United Nations and Human Rights in the Post-Cold War Era
Thérien Jean Philippe, Joly Philippe
Human Rights Quarterly, 36, 373–396. The Johns Hopkins University Press : 2014 :

Wade Ross
Pedagogy, places and people
Journal of Teacher Education for Sustainability. Volume 14, Issue 2, Pages 147–167, ISSN (Online) 1691-5534, ISSN (Print) 1691-4147, 2014. DOI: 10.2478/v10099-012-0014-8, March 2013. :

A selection of additional articles may be added.