Date of Submission



This research project is a case study of a unique, week-long interdisciplinary human rights education programme known as the Human Rights Convention for Year 8 students at a Melbourne secondary college. The project aims to explore, describe and thereby understand the Human Rights Convention, and through this understanding, draw insights into the programme's worth to the school community. The methodology utilised both qualitative and quantitative data within a case study approach. Data was gathered from all participants (students and teachers) of the programme in one year, using interviews, observations, document analysis and questionnaires. In addition, interviews were conducted with key people at the school, students who had participated in the programme in previous years, and teachers not directly involved in the programme. Data was analysed using thematic, visual image, narrative and quantitative approaches. The educational perspective behind the programme was found to be based on the conviction that human rights education is necessary for all secondary students, and that such a programme will help enact aspects of the school's vision and mission statement as well as its middle school goals. Both student and teacher participants were engaged with the programme and found it worthwhile. A number of areas where the programme could be improved were identified to increase its effectiveness for all participants. The programme compared favourably to a model of best practice human rights education postulated from the literature and it was found to have relevance for other educational contexts. It is believed the findings of this study will prove significant in that they offer benefits to the school, to the wider educational community which may see value in using aspects of the programme in their own educational context, and as a contribution to research in the field of human rights education.;It is an area where there has been very little research undertaken, especially in Australian schools.


School of Education

Document Type


Access Rights

Open Access


323 pages

Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Faculty of Education