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M.A. in Human Rights & Transitional Justice

Why M.A. in Human Rights & Transitional Justice?

  • Study with the top legal minds in the fields of human rights and transitional justice.
  • Position yourself for a career in government or international relations.
  • Study the Israeli-Arab conflict and its resolution while residing in the heart of Jerusalem.
  • Gain theoretical knowledge and apply it to case studies.

The M.A. in Human Rights and Transitional Justice is offered through Hebrew University’s Rothberg International School (RIS) in partnership with the Faculty of Law, long considered the most prestigious law school in Israel. This program is geared toward students with a bachelor’s degree in political science, international relations, or a related discipline. As a participant in the program, you will become an expert in the fields of human rights and transitional justice by studying with a group of experienced legal experts from all over the world.

The program includes two main components: theoretical coursework, which provides substantial interdisciplinary understanding, as well as comparative and historical coursework, in which you’ll apply your theoretical knowledge to compelling cases from different time periods.


The program spans two consecutive semesters from October through July.


The M.A. in Human Rights and Transitional Justice consists of 32 credits.


Provided as an example only and subject to change:

Required Background Courses (4 of 4)

  • Introduction to the Law of Israel
  • Israel and International Law
  • International Human Rights Law
  • Introduction to Transitional Justice

Core Courses (4 of 4)

  • Transitional Justice in Israel
  • International Regulation of Trade and Investment
  • Laws of War
  • International Criminal Law

Workshops (at least two required)

  • International Law Workshop
  • Transitional Justice Colloquium: Comparative and Jurisprudential Perspectives Workshop
  • Workshop in public law and human rights

Seminars (at least two required)

  • Non-state Actors in International Law
  • The Role of International Law in Resolving the Middle-East Conflict
  • Religion, State, and Multiculturalism

Elective Courses

You can choose from more than 10 additional courses on human rights and transitional justice, and have the option to complete an M.A. thesis. See the full list of courses in, M.A. Program Requirements 2021-2022.

M.A. Thesis

We are offering the students the possibility of pursuing a research track, followed by the submission of a Thesis. Successful completion of the entire track, including the Thesis, would be reflected in the Graduation Certificate. The thesis grade will amount to 40% of the final M.A./LL.M grade. Acceptance to the research track will be based on your grades from the first semester. Students with an average of 85 and above will be eligible to apply in the beginning of the second semester.

Our faculty is comprised of top academics and practitioners, including legal experts from Israel, Europe, and North America, current and former members of the UN Human Rights Committee, and legal advisors for governments and international organizations. Core faculty include Prof. Yuval Shany, chair of International Law and senior research fellow at the Israel Democracy Institute; Prof. David Kretzmer, Israeli expert in international and constitutional law; and Prof. Michael Karayanni, who is the first Arab-Israeli dean of the Faculty of Law, and former academic director of the Minerva Center for Human Rights.

This program is ideal for students interested in pursuing a career in government or non-governmental organizations, particularly in the field of international relations.

“For me, living in the holy city with Palestinian and Israeli friends all around, I truly had lessons of the complex reality of that land.”
Haotan Wu of China
M.A. in Islamic and Middle Eastern Studies (2016)

Read more about our students’ experiences.

Extracurricular Activities & Student Support

HebrewU’s RIS offers a rich extracurricular activities program, including tours, cultural and social events, lectures, and more. We support you throughout your stay with us so that Jerusalem becomes your home away from home. Learn more about student life.

Apply by: 

  • Early admissions: November 22, 2020 – January 5, 2021
  • Regular admissions: January 6 – August 31, 2021

Applicants will receive an email from the Graduate Office with a student number, personal code, and link to upload the required supplementary documents within about 3 days of applying to a program.

Applicants will receive an admission decision within about 3 weeks of applying to a program and submitting all of the required supplementary documents. Admissions decisions are sent via email.

Early Admissions Tuition Payment and Scholarship

  • $1,000 scholarship will be awarded to students who apply to the program by January 5, 2021, are accepted, pay $1,500towards their tuition by February 5, 2021, and pay the remainder of their tuition by April 7, 2021.

All students must pay $1,500 towards their tuition by May 13, 2021, and must pay the remainder of their tuition by June 10, 2021.

Regular Admissions Tuition Payment

All students must pay $1,500 towards their tuition by May 13, 2021, and must pay the remainder of their tuition by June 10, 2021.

Cancellation Policy

Applicants who complete their tuition payment and then decide to cancel their enrollment in the program before October 10, 2021 will receive a full refund, but will be charged a $500 withdrawal fee. Applicants who are forced to cancel their enrollment in the program due to COVID will receive a full refund and will not be charged a withdrawal fee.

Arrive on campus by: Approximately one week before your program starts; specific dates will be sent to accepted students via email.

Summer Ulpan (optional intensive Hebrew language course): August-September, 2021; check the academic calendar for exact dates.

Program length: One year (two consecutive semesters, autumn and spring); October, 2021 – June, 2022; check the academic calendar for exact dates.

Students who wish to prolong their studies may enroll as LL.M/ M.A. Extended Year Students for an additional fee.

For financial information, see Tuition & Fees.

Health Insurance

Students enrolled in M.A. programs are eligible to receive health insurance for the duration of their program at no extra cost. Students who will be arriving early or departing late may purchase extended health insurance. See Health and Safety for more information.

 Summer Ulpan

The Summer Ulpan (an intensive Modern Hebrew course) is optional. Tuition for international students is US$ 2,425. Tuition for Israeli citizens is NIS 7,770. Housing is available for the Summer Ulpan for an additional fee of US$ 1,640. See Summer Ulpan Programs for more information.


A limited number of on-campus student apartments are available. The cost of housing for two semesters (October, 2019 – June, 2020) is US $6,180. See University Housing for more information.

Fees & Refunds

For a complete explanation of fees and refunds, see Tuition & Fees for Graduate Students.


Faculty of Law: The Faculty of Law offers scholarships of up to US$ 4,000. Email a letter of motivation to the coordinator, Ms. Shanie Rabinowitz, detailing why you are requesting a scholarship and the amount requested. The request will be reviewed by the scholarship committee. Only applicants accepted to the program will be considered for a scholarship.

Additional sources of financial aid and scholarships: A limited number of scholarships based on demonstrated need or merit are available. Please see our Scholarships and Financial Aid page for details.

To be eligible for acceptance, you must have the following:

  • Bachelor’s degree in political science, international relations, or a related field from an accredited institution of higher education recognized by HebrewU
  • Minimum B average (85/100 or equivalent)
  • Demonstrated knowledge of English

In addition to your online application, you will be required to submit the following documents:

  1. Academic Records: A Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution of higher education with a B average (85/100 or equivalent) or above. Applicants must submit transcripts and diplomas from all prior academic degrees.*
  2. Proof of English Proficiency: A TOEFL exam score of 80 or above, IELTS exam score of 6 or above, Amir exam score of 220 or above, or Amiram exam score of 120 or above. **
  3. A CV and Statement of Purpose
  4. One Academic Recommendations
  5. An Academic Paper in English (may be a final paper submitted for a university course or sample of your legal writing).
  6. Photocopy of your Passport ID page
  7. A Medical Form and Disclaimer Form (US citizens only)- both forms may be downloaded from the application website.

All documents may be uploaded to your application directly or sent to gradmiss@savion.huji.ac.il as email attachments.

* Students who submit scanned copies of their academic records may be accepted to the program conditionally, pending submission of original academic records.

** If you have completed a degree at a university at which English is the sole language of instruction, or if you have completed a degree in English Language and Literature, you can request an exemption. You must submit documentation from your university verifying English as the language of instruction. Exemption is not automatic and is determined on a case-by-case basis.


We’re happy you’ve chosen to apply to Hebrew University’s Rothberg International School. See our application guidelines or apply online now.


Questions about the Curriculum & Scholarships
Email Ms. Shanie Rabinowitz 
International Programs Coordinator, Faculty of Law

Questions about Admission, Housing, and Other Practical Matters
Email the Division of Graduate Studies
Call us: +972 2 588 3184 

Fast Facts

Language of Instruction:


Degree Earned:

Master of Arts

Career Outlook:

Government, NGOs


One year (two consecutive semesters)

Start Dates:

August (Summer Ulpan, optional) or October (degree program); check the academic calendar


Bachelor’s degree in political science, international relations, or related field

Application Deadline:

August 31, 2021; late applications reviewed on a space-available basis


See Tuition & Fees

Take a look at our pages for prospects, students, faculty and staff, alumni, and parents – or contact us!