Course Outline

DEV702 International Human Rights, Peace and Conflict, and Environmental Justice

Course Coordinator:Cathryn Morriss ( School:School of Law and Society

2023Semester 2

UniSC Sunshine Coast

Blended learning Most of your course is on campus but you may be able to do some components of this course online.

Please go to for up to date information on the
teaching sessions and campuses where this course is usually offered.

What is this course about?


This is an advanced course that provides you with an in-depth and extensive analysis of the theoretical and applied principles of peace and conflict transformation, human rights as a global ethical framework, as well as contemporary environmental issues that come together in specifically contemporary ways. The course will help you gain an in depth understanding of the complex issues within violence, conflict and peace.

How will this course be delivered?

Activity Hours Beginning Week Frequency
Blended learning
Learning materials – Weekly online learning materials 1hr Week 1 13 times
Tutorial/Workshop 1 – Weekly tutorials 2hrs Week 1 13 times

Course Topics

  • Key concepts & issues: What is Peace?
  • Fear, Violence, and the Sociology of Cultures of War or Peace
  • Sociology, Peace, and Remembered Grievances
  • Cultures of Peace – Attitudes to War
  • Conflict Analysis / Conflict Mediation: tracking escalation in environments, people, places
  • Ethics & Peace Research: peace research and peace practice
  • Peace Communication - Journalism, peace and conflict
  • Women, war, and peace: a human rights approach
  • Nonviolent action, nonviolent philosophy, nonviolent communication
  • Ecologies of Peace: environmental space as a peace project
  • REFLECTING ON VIOLENCE structural, cultural, direct
  • People on the move: forced migration and environments of violent conflict
  • The Future of Peace? Challenges for humanity

What level is this course?

700 Level (Specialised)

Demonstrating a specialised body of knowledge and set of skills for professional practice or further learning. Advanced application of knowledge and skills in unfamiliar contexts.

What is the unit value of this course?

12 units

How does this course contribute to my learning?

Course Learning Outcomes On successful completion of this course, you should be able to... Graduate Qualities Completing these tasks successfully will contribute to you becoming...
1 Critically reflect on concepts of peace and conflict, and environmental justice, to evaluate models and theories associated with these areas of study. Creative and critical thinker
2 Critically evaluate complex real life issues using peace and conflict theories, and environmental justice, to demonstrate the potentialities for sustainability and sustainable peace. Creative and critical thinker
3 Evaluate, compare and communicate research on peace and conflict, and environmental justice, using ethical and socially responsible strategies. Engaged
4 Develop advanced collaborative qualities to mimic that of a worker in an NGO in the fields of peace and conflict, human rights, and environmental justice. Knowledgeable

Am I eligible to enrol in this course?

Refer to the UniSC Glossary of terms for definitions of “pre-requisites, co-requisites and anti-requisites”.


Enrolled in any PGRD Program


Not applicable



Specific assumed prior knowledge and skills (where applicable)

Not applicable

How am I going to be assessed?

Grading Scale

Standard Grading (GRD)

High Distinction (HD), Distinction (DN), Credit (CR), Pass (PS), Fail (FL).

Details of early feedback on progress

Timely and detailed feedback is provided for each assessment. Feedback is provided both within text and general comments to build scholarly skills. Students are able to seek feedback through face-to-face discussion with the course coordinator. Tutorials will include extended discussion and review of the assessment task requirements

Assessment tasks

Delivery mode Task No. Assessment Product Individual or Group Weighting % What is the duration / length? When should I submit? Where should I submit it?
All 1 Written Piece Individual 15%
1000 words
Refer to Format Online Submission
All 2 Oral Individual and Group 45%
30 Minutes
Refer to Format In Class
All 3 Essay Individual 40%
3000 words
Week 13 Online Assignment Submission with plagiarism check
All - Assessment Task 1:Critical Reflection
Critically reflect on learning material topics in preparation for task 2
Product: Written Piece
Submit: Week 3-4. 

This task is a chance to reflect more deeply on the key concepts that will inform your Task 2 presentation. The reflections should demonstrate engagement with the course materials and the application of key concepts to one or more settings that enable you to identify, analyse and evaluate how these concepts aid in broadening your understanding of at least two areas of interest within the scope of the course. The format, negotiated with the Course Coordinator in the first tutorial, may be a written essay, or a combination of both a visual representation (artistic/video/creative work) and accompanying written contextualisation of the work.
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Critical and analytical reflection that demonstrates engagement with the course materials and resources.
1 2 3 4
Identification of concepts, models and theories associated with the themes of peace, conflict and environmental justice.
1 2 3 4
Application of key concepts to real-life settings.
1 3
Choice of content (currency, significance, relevance to course themes).
Appropriate application of a format that enables scholarly and thoughtful reflection.
All - Assessment Task 2:Presentation
This assessment will give you the opportunity to apply knowledge and skills gained through engaging with the learning materials and tutorials to an issue that has broader relevance to your degree or to your areas of personal interest. It will enhance your understanding of the relevance of human rights, peace and conflict studies, and environmental justice to a specific contemporary issue or event and how sociological approaches might enable a deeper understanding of the issue at hand. The oral presentation will allow you to demonstrate your understanding of why a creative approach to communicating for peace, especially as this relates to environmental issues, is helpful in engaging society in the processes for peacebuilding by using ethical and socially responsible strategies to engage an audience.
Product: Oral
Submit: Week 6-12. 

In groups of 2 or 3 you will produce a creative and informative presentation for a simulated conference setting based on a case study of your choosing that reflects one of the topics covered in the course. Your group's presentation will be 30 minutes in total. All group members must be involved as active participants. The presentation must demonstrate competency in applying appropriate creative elements of engagement with the audience. All students will then offer a brief individual critique of at least two presentations other than their own.
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Critical reflection on concepts of peace and conflict, and environmental justice.
1 2 3 4
Evaluation of models and theories associated with peace and conflict, and environmental justice.
1 2
Critical evaluation of complex real-life issues and evaluation, comparison and communication of research on peace and conflict, and environmental justice using ethical and socially responsible strategies
1 2 3 4
Demonstration of the potentialities for sustainability and sustainable peace.
1 2 3 4
Demonstrated understanding of creative strategies, including the use of contextually appropriate creative technologies, for effective and non-violent communication.
1 2 3 4
Demonstration of an appropriate mix of independence and interdependence in the seminar presentation.
All - Assessment Task 3:Analytical Essay
This task is designed to demonstrate your ability to integrate personal reflections with theoretical analysis. You will critically apply your knowledge of key concepts and advanced theories of human rights, peace and conflict, environmental justice, conflict resolutions frameworks, social, political, cultural and ethical considerations to a specific self-identified circumstance and develop the capacity to succinctly reflect upon how those factors impact on identifiable or perceived outcomes. This task requires you to critically evaluate diverse real-life issues using peace and conflict, and environmental justice theories to demonstrate the potentiality of sustainable and sustainability in peace engagement, and to communicate your understandings, perceptions and analysis of the content in a well-developed scholarly fashion.
Product: Essay
This task involves preparation of an analytical essay of 3000 words. The topic of the essay is self-identified and may either build upon the task 2 topic or introduce a new topic for analysis. This essay will incorporate theoretical understandings and frameworks to analyse a contemporary conflict situation. The essay structure is negotiable and must be approved by the Course Coordinator during an individual planning meeting to be scheduled no later than week 10.
No. Learning Outcome assessed
Critical analysis, evaluation, comparison and communication on concepts of peace and conflict, and environmental justice using ethical and socially responsible strategies
1 2 3 4
Evaluation of models and theories associated with peace and conflict, and environmental justice.
1 2 3 4
Demonstrated capacity to apply peace and conflict theories and models to complex real-life issues with the aim of raising critical questions around human rights, social justice and/or environmental justice.
1 2 3 4
Demonstration of the potentialities for sustainability and sustainable peace.
1 2 3 4
Quality of academic style writing: logical, coherent and informed analysis, which is properly referenced.
1 2 3 4
Demonstrated critical engagement with disciplinary literature.
1 2 3

Directed study hours

A 12-unit course will have total of 150 learning hours which will include directed study hours (including online if required), self-directed learning and completion of assessable tasks. Student workload is calculated at 12.5 learning hours per one unit.

What resources do I need to undertake this course?

Please note: Course information, including specific information of recommended readings, learning activities, resources, weekly readings, etc. are available on the course Canvas site– Please log in as soon as possible.

Prescribed text(s) or course reader

There are no required/recommended resources for this course.

Specific requirements


How are risks managed in this course?

Health and safety risks for this course have been assessed as low. It is your responsibility to review course material, search online, discuss with lecturers and peers and understand the health and safety risks associated with your specific course of study and to familiarise yourself with the University’s general health and safety principles by reviewing the online induction training for students, and following the instructions of the University staff.

What administrative information is relevant to this course?

Assessment: Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is the ethical standard of university participation.  It ensures that students graduate as a result of proving they are competent in their discipline.  This is integral in maintaining the value of academic qualifications. Each industry has expectations and standards of the skills and knowledge within that discipline and these are reflected in assessment.

Academic integrity means that you do not engage in any activity that is considered to be academic fraud; including plagiarism, collusion or outsourcing any part of any assessment item to any other person.  You are expected to be honest and ethical by completing all work yourself and indicating in your work which ideas and information were developed by you and which were taken from others. You cannot provide your assessment work to others. You are also expected to provide evidence of wide and critical reading, usually by using appropriate academic references.

In order to minimise incidents of academic fraud, this course may require that some of its assessment tasks, when submitted to Canvas, are electronically checked through Turnitin.  This software allows for text comparisons to be made between your submitted assessment item and all other work to which Turnitin has access.

Assessment: Additional Requirements

Your eligibility for supplementary assessment in a course is dependent of the following conditions applying:

The final mark is in the percentage range 47% to 49.4%
The course is graded using the Standard Grading scale
You have not failed an assessment task in the course due to academic misconduct.

Assessment: Submission penalties

Late submission of assessment tasks may be penalised at the following maximum rate: 
- 5% (of the assessment task's identified value) per day for the first two days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. 
- 10% (of the assessment task's identified value) for the third day - 20% (of the assessment task's identified value) for the fourth day and subsequent days up to and including seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. 
- A result of zero is awarded for an assessment task submitted after seven days from the date identified as the due date for the assessment task. Weekdays and weekends are included in the calculation of days late. To request an extension you must contact your course coordinator to negotiate an outcome.


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The SafeUniSC Specialist Service is a Student Wellbeing service that provides free and confidential support to students who may have experienced or observed behaviour that could cause fear, offence or trauma. To contact the service call 07 5430 1226 or email

Study help

For help with course-specific advice, for example what information to include in your assessment, you should first contact your tutor, then your course coordinator, if needed.

If you require additional assistance, the Learning Advisers are trained professionals who are ready to help you develop a wide range of academic skills. Visit the Learning Advisers web page for more information, or contact Student Central for further assistance: +61 7 5430 2890 or

Wellbeing Services

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To book a confidential appointment go to Student Hub, email or call 07 5430 1226.

AccessAbility Services

Ability Advisers ensure equal access to all aspects of university life. If your studies are affected by a disability, learning disorder mental health issue, injury or illness, or you are a primary carer for someone with a disability or who is considered frail and aged, AccessAbility Services can provide access to appropriate reasonable adjustments and practical advice about the support and facilities available to you throughout the University.

To book a confidential appointment go to Student Hub, email or call 07 5430 2890.

Links to relevant University policy and procedures

For more information on Academic Learning & Teaching categories including:

  • Assessment: Courses and Coursework Programs
  • Review of Assessment and Final Grades
  • Supplementary Assessment
  • Central Examinations
  • Deferred Examinations
  • Student Conduct
  • Students with a Disability

For more information, visit

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