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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Introduction to International Criminal Law by Case Western Reserve University

3,538 ratings

About the Course

-- About the Course -- From the Nuremberg trial to the case against Saddam Hussein, from the prosecution of Al-Qaeda terrorists to the trial of Somali pirates – no area of law is as important to world peace and security as international criminal law. Taught by one of the world’s leading experts in the field, this course will educate students about the fundamentals of international criminal law and policy. We will explore the contours of international crimes such as genocide, war crimes, terrorism, and piracy. We will examine unique modes of international criminal liability and specialized defenses. And we will delve into the challenges of obtaining custody of the accused and maintaining control of the courtroom. -- Course Syllabus -- This course comprises eight units (or "modules"). Each will include an assigned reading, typically an article or book chapter, as well as a simulation designed to bring the readings to life. I will also offer video lectures on each of the topics, accompanied by slides. In addition, there will be online role-play exercises and debates, enabling the students to share their own insights. The order of class sessions will be: (1) History: From Nuremberg to The Hague (2) International Crimes Part 1: War Crimes, Genocide, Crimes against Humanity, and Torture (3) International Crimes Part 2: Terrorism and Piracy (4) Special modes of liability: command responsibility, co-perpetration, and incitement (5) Special defenses: insanity, obedience to orders, duress, and head of state immunity (6) Gaining custody of the accused: extradition, luring, abduction, and targeted killing (7) Pre-Trial Issues: plea bargaining, self-representation, and exclusion of torture evidence (8) Maintaining control of the courtroom -- Recommended Background -- You don’t have to be a lawyer and there are no prerequisites for this course. However, the course will be conducted at the level expected of advanced undergraduate students. Therefore, for all participants, reading and writing comfortably in English at the undergraduate college level is desirable. -- Suggested Readings -- Students should read the assigned online materials for each unit in advance of the class session. In addition, students are invited to subscribe to “War Crimes Prosecution Watch,” a free bi-weekly e-newsletter that summarizes the latest developments in the field of international criminal law. -- Course Format -- This course is made up of eight content units. Each unit is based on an online reading assignment, a video lecture of about one hour in length, and one or more role play exercises to stimulate on-line discussion. The course also offers in-video enrichment quizzes (ungraded) for each unit, a ten question multiple choice midterm diagnostics exam (ungraded), and a ten question True/False Final Exam. -- FAQ-- How will this course be graded? This course is graded on completion. In order to complete the course each student must: (1) finish each module (or “lesson”); (2) write at least one essay response of 200 words or more for at least one simulation throughout the course; and (3) get a score of 6 out of 10 or better on the Final Exam. What resources will I need for this course? For this course, all you need is an Internet connection, and the time to read and discuss the exciting materials available online. What is the coolest thing about this course? The topics we will be discussing are ripped from the headlines. The topics are often controversial and thought-provoking, and always exciting....

Top reviews


Oct 24, 2020

Extremely well-organized. Really glad to see how all previous examples and history records were referenced to every topic. Neatly explained topics. Every aspect was discussed and explained in detail.


Sep 21, 2020

learned so much from this course, absolutely loved it, and the way the professor taught the lessons showed his experience and his knowledge even for fist timers it would be a great course to opt for.

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301 - 325 of 911 Reviews for Introduction to International Criminal Law

By Jerry O

Oct 25, 2018

Excellent delivery by Prof Michael Sharf. I found the live cases and illustrations extremely helpful.

By Anuradha

Oct 9, 2020

Got to learn a lot of things about law and is very knowledgeable.Thank you Professor Michael Scharf.

By Fernanda R

Feb 25, 2019

Very Practical course, with original materials you couldn't find anywhere else.

excellent professor.

By Dr. P G

Jan 18, 2022

For me it was an excellent opportunity to learn of an updated fild like International Criminal Law.

By sedrik b

Dec 22, 2020

My name is Sedrik brander Iam glad about this course I live In South Africa in the Western Cape .

By Sayan K N

Dec 12, 2020

The course is truly very educating. And the way Prof. Michael Scharf teaches is absolutely awesome.

By Akshaykumar G

Apr 13, 2020

Thank you so much sir for giving me wonderful opportunity to learn about international criminal law

By C S H

Sep 19, 2022

Excelent information with a well-rounded subject matter for the introduction to international law.

By vidyuth r

Jul 24, 2020

I loved the varied range of topics covered by this course.Simple , clear and easily understandable

By Delon P

May 3, 2020

The course is very informative. It is made more interesting by the instructor Mr. Michael Scharf.

By Shah f K

Aug 24, 2021

The best course I have ever encountered. It widened my exposure to international criminal law !!

By Apurbo B M

Feb 15, 2021

As a LAW student i am feeling proud for this course. I learned many new thing's form this course.

By Oguguo F

Nov 13, 2020

It’s really awesome as I learnt a lot of things. Really enjoyed this session and it has helped me

By Chinedu C

Aug 12, 2019

This course is rich and insightful. It made me decide to take more courses in the Law discipline.


Aug 6, 2019

Es un curso muy completo, el cual recomiendo cursar en su totalidad, el aprendizaje es continuo.

By Aine M

Nov 25, 2015

Very good, enjoyable and incredibly useful in understanding the international community's way of

By abigail q

Nov 14, 2015

I think the professor is remarkable and all the material is absolutely good! thank you so much!

By Quique J G

Nov 2, 2022

Curso muy interesante, muy bien explicado y dónde se aprende mucho sobre derecho internacional.

By Jenny A V T

Nov 24, 2020

Excelente el contenido del curso, el material académico, los exámenes y el profesor instructor.

By Cleberson V W

Nov 7, 2020

Excelente curso,ajudou-me a expandir muito meu conhecimento no tocante a Direito Internacional.

By Sab D

Aug 16, 2019

Very informative and interesting. I loved the video lectures, and the hand outs were also good.

By Khushboo

Jan 22, 2021

I'm really enjoying to do this course and thankful to Coursera to give me this golden chance.

By Gustavo J G P G

Nov 3, 2020

it's very important to know about the international law, beacuse a lot of countries have cases

By Sadia R

Feb 18, 2023

if you want to know about law join this international criminal law course this is best course

By Abiola A

May 28, 2018

Great learning experience. Both video and text lectures were so explanatory and interesting.