JST318 Human Rights and Social Justice (8)

Human rights standards are increasingly considered as a model for best practice policing in both developed and developing nations. Policing plays a primary role in the protection of human rights and this subject will ensure students' familiarity with human rights concepts, standards, debates, and the applicability of human rights to the criminal justice system, including policing. Students will also look at vulnerability and discrimination within a rights based framework. The subject will look at how a rights based approach can inform ethical professional practice.


Session 2 (60)
On Campus
Bathurst Campus
Port Macquarie Campus
Bathurst Campus
Session 3 (90)
Bathurst Campus

Continuing students should consult the SAL for current offering details: JST318. Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


Australian Graduate School of Policing and Security

Assumed Knowledge

Any JST level 2 subject

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to explain the structures and functions of international governance in relation to human rights and key human rights debates;
  • be able to critically apply human rights standards to the criminal justice system;
  • be able to explain and critically apply human rights frameworks;
  • be able to explain and critique how vulnerability and discrimination are understood through a rights based approach;
  • be able to articulate your understanding clearly and cogently;
  • be able to use the work of major theorists and authors to inform your understanding; and
  • be able to demonstrate a growing professional awareness by being professional in all communications and conduct with academic staff and other students, and through presentation of assignments.


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Topics such as: Introduction to structures and functions of international governance; Key concepts of human rights including 'generations' of rights; Western and non-western histories of human rights; Key debates in human rights: internal critiques (eg relativism and universalism, national sovereignty and international intervention); Key debates in human rights: external critiques (eg feminist interventions, race interventions); The role of governments in the protection and/or undermining of human rights; The role of non government organisations in the protection and/or undermining of human rights; The role of policing practices in both upholding and/or undermining human rights; Theoretical and practical importance of a Human Rights model of policing. The relationship between the rule of law and human rights standards. Relevant United Nations human rights conventions and standards; Examination of the contribution of policing systems to countries' human rights records; Discrimination rights and law, rights based approach to social exclusion and vulnerability (including CALD, ethnicity, and disability); ethical professional practice and human right based approaches will be covered.

Indicative Assessment

The following table summarises the assessment tasks for the online offering of JST318 in Session 2 2019. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated and can also differ to suit the mode of study (online or on campus).

Item Number
Value %
Multiple choice test
Reflective journal
Research essay

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: October 2020. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.