Master of Law in International Criminal & Justice (LLM ICJ)

The Open University Of Tanzania

Program Description

Master of Law in International Criminal & Justice (LLM ICJ)

The Open University Of Tanzania

International Criminal Justice (ICJ) is an area of public international law that has for many years been the preserve of scholars and experts in international law. As an aspect of public international law, ICJ focuses on acts prohibited under international for which individuals are held responsible. Individual criminal responsibility is the primary goal of ICJ, thus ICJ has two aspects; prohibition of acts and accountability mechanisms.

ICJ has developed rapidly in the past decade especially with regard to the accountability aspect. Norms prohibiting international crimes have existed for decades, for example, the Genocide Convention was concluded in 1948. Activity around ICJ, in terms of its expanding jurisprudence through the various mechanism mentioned above, has seen an exponential increase in interest in ICL and the issue of international criminal justice. Nowhere more so than in Africa.

Recent events have propelled ICJ from an obscure international law subject to a topic discussed and debated by the general public across the continent, primarily as a result of the ICC and the cases it has initiated that are from the continent. As of 2004 the ICC has investigated and initiated proceedings against individuals from 4 African countries; Central African Republic (CAR), Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), the Sudan and Uganda. Thus Africans have had to learn quickly about ICJ.

Worryingly, however, much of the debate around ICJ has been in the media. It would appear that there has not been much input on the subject from Africa scholars. This is not surprising given that African universities still do not provide ICJ as a stand-alone course in their law programmes, thus it is contended that African input into the development of the norms of ICJ has been stifled. There is an urgent need to develop the capacity of African universities to provide ICJ as a stand-alone course at both the undergraduate and postgraduate level.

What is required is a robust introduction to ICJ for Africans with the desire to learn. Legal practitioners, students, researchers, civil servants and human rights activists in Africa must have a home-grown curriculum that introduces them to the subject that is relevant to them, their communities and values. African perspectives of ICJ must engender a generation of Africans well-versed in ICJ for the continued enhancement of human rights on the continent.

Programme Overview

Students examine a diverse range of key themes from general principles of international law, the interplay between international relations, politics and law, international crimes, international courts and tribunals, immunity of high-ranking state officials, issues of peace versus justice to gender issues in international justice. Whether for academic, personal or professional development, the LLM in International Criminal Justice is an ideal choice for law graduates, lawyers, judges and magistrates, and international law specialists seeking to equip themselves with specialist knowledge on international criminal law and justice, the creation of such laws and their application in the real world.

Students can acquire a certificate, diploma or masters with the possibility to change between the categories, upon satisfactory performance, for example, a student who initially registers for the certificate may opt to continue studying to the diploma or masters qualification. Likewise, a student originally registered for the masters may be transferred to the certificate or diploma stream.

Full-time LLM students are required to complete six courses from those listed – two courses per semester. For those candidates seeking the award of LLM in International Criminal Justice, a 20,000-word dissertation on a topic of your own choice is required. Distance learning students are also required to complete four courses, taking one course per semester. A flexible two-course Postgraduate Certificate (PgCert) is also available.


The scale of recent developments in international criminal law is great, however, there is a dearth of knowledge amongst many and, given the importance of the issue, it is imperative that programmes that will educate and sensitize the key individuals must be established. In the west, several institutions of higher learning have acknowledged the importance of international criminal law and provide international criminal law/justice programme, but that is not the case for Africa.

Unfortunately, Africa has been international criminal law’s continental focal point in the last 10 years and seems set to retain the limelight well into the next decade. With violent conflicts raging in, inter alia, Darfur, Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Chad, Somalia, where gross violations of human rights occur, and recently the post-election violence that spiralled out of control in Kenya it is obvious that international criminal law must be given importance on the continent. There is a need to educate and sensitize the public about the international criminal law and provide the continent with home-grown experts that will work towards ensuring individual accountability where war crimes, genocide, crimes against humanity occur.

Aim of the Programme

The LLM in ICJ programme aims to produce highly skilled, independent and adaptable graduates with a solid knowledge of the basic principles of law, who are equipped for employment both in the legal profession and other fields of endeavor. The programme reflects the emphasis on "useful learning" which is at the heart of the mission of the University. The modular programme guarantees that all students achieve the requisite benchmark standards but also offers considerable flexibility which allows students to select a curriculum which meets their own needs. The programme also ensures that knowledge and skills are developed progressively through the course of the degree.

Objectives of the Programme

To develop fundamental knowledge and understanding of the principles, nature, and development of international criminal law and the justice. This will be achieved through strategies set up to:

  1. To develop in students intellectual rigor, independence of mind, and the ability to think critically and constructively.
  2. To develop in students a range of generic transferable skills which they can use in a wide range of settings.
  3. To produce graduates who are confident, responsible, and reflective, and, who are equipped to develop their potential throughout their careers.
  4. To produce graduates who will assess critical issues put forward in the programme in relation to their professional endeavors.

Eligibility for Admission

Candidates with the following qualifications will be eligible for admission to the LLM ICJ Programme:

Honours degree in law or a pass degree in postgraduate diploma in law (PGDL)


A holder of Non-Law Degree graduate, with at least two years, work experience relevant to the subject content of the course.

Programme Design

Each Student of Master of Laws in International Criminal Justice will be required to study a minimum of 72 credits (18 Units) which (6Courses plus a Dissertation). Each Unit is equivalent to 40 one hour lectures or 4 credits. Delivery will be in blended mode; Moodle and Face to Face Executive classes.

Students will be given an assignment of 6,000 words to be submitted within three weeks after the end of each course.

Students pursuing the masters rather than advanced diploma will have another six months to work on a dissertation project.

Course CODE Course Name Unit Credit
OLW 671 Principles of International Law 2 8
OLW 672 International Politics & Relations 2 8
OLW 673 Substantive International Criminal Law 2 8
OLW 674 Law & History of Accountability Mechanisms 2 8
OLW 675 Contemporary Issues in International Criminal Law 2 8
OLW 676 International Criminal Courts & Tribunals; Processes & Procedures 2 8
OLW 600 Legal Research Methodology 0 0
OLW 677 Dissertation 6 24

The Faculty of Law, The Open University of Tanzania defines ONE unit as equivalent to thirty-five (40) one-hour lectures

Programme Mode Delivery

The programme will be delivered through one lecture spread over a week for a maximum of 40 hours. The lectures will be conducted for each course in Arusha, or any other selected venue in Tanzania.

Learner support strategies

Use of ICT, lectures notes, with online links to relevant reading, use of libraries in hometowns, a database on International Criminal Law, URLs with search Engines, discussion lists, students homepages, and possibly Lexis, the OUT Library, UN website, ICTR, ICTY and ICC websites. The entire Programme must be completed within two years for the award of the LLM ICJ.

Programme Duration

The entire programme shall be completed within two years for the award of the LLM in International Criminal Justice (ICJ).

Final Award / Graduation Requirements

  1. The minimum pass mark for the course is grade “B” or 50%.
  2. Candidates who successfully complete the required units/course shall qualify, upon approval by Senate, for the award of LLM in International Criminal Justice.
  3. The degree of Masters of Laws s in International Criminal Justice shall not be classified but may be awarded distinction.

Cost & Fees

Non Tuition Fees

Application fee 30,000 30 30
Registration fee 50,000 100 100
ID processing 20,000 20 20
Student Organization fee (paid annually) 20,000 20 20
Quality assurance fee (paid annually) 20,000 20 40
Coursework Examination fee per paper 20,000 40 60
Plagiarism fee 20,000 20 20

Tution Fee per Unit for Taught Masters Programmes

Blended mode 220,000 100 200
Facilitation fee 50 50
Dissertation fee 220,000 100 200

Note: Facilitation is meant to cater for taxes, levies, postage cost, courier services, and phone call charges.This fee is also paid by Tanzanians residing outside Tanzania.

Other Recommended Direct Student Cost For Masters by Coursework/Dissertation Students

Research/Field Costs & Consultations 1,500,000 1,000
Books 300,000 300
Stationery 100,000 100
Dissertation production 300,000 300
TOTAL 2,200,000 1,700
This school offers programs in:
  • English

Last updated January 20, 2018
Duration & Price
This course is Online & Campus Combined
Start Date
Start date
Feb. 2018
Sept. 2018
2 years
Part time
Tanzania - Dar Es Salaam
Start date: Feb. 2018, Sept. 2018
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End date Request Info
Feb. 2018, Sept. 2018
Tanzania - Dar Es Salaam
Application deadline Request Info
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