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September 15, 2023

Join more than 1,000 participants in the free online course in Portuguese on the Legal Framework for Freedom of Expression

Registration is still open for the massive online course “International Legal Framework on Freedom of Expression offered in Portuguese by the University of Texas’ Knight Center for Journalism in the Americas and UNESCO.

This four-week massive open online course (MOOC) began Monday, Sept. 11, and will continue until Oct. 8. More than 1,000 journalists, academics, judges, lawyers, prosecutors and other judicial operators have already enrolled in this course, and there’s still time to join this amazing learning community.

The International Legal Framework of Freedom of Expression, Access to Information and Protection of Journalists” is part of an UNESCO global program that has already reached 32,000 judicial operators around the world.

Marco Jurídico MOOC

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The course is organized into four weekly modules, but it is asynchronous, so there are no required live activities. Students can join the course at any time and organize their participation around the days and times that work best for their busy schedules. 

Led by renowned Brazilian expert André Gustavo Corrêa de Andrade, a judge at a superior court in Rio de Janeiro where he teaches Constitutional Law in graduate programs, the course delves into international human rights law and its application in the Brazilian context. Key topics include press freedom, access to information, source confidentiality, right of reply, and contemporary challenges posed by the internet and social media.

“Freedom of expression is one of the pillars of democracy. It ensures that citizens make themselves heard by those in charge, taking their pleas, claims and nonconformities to those in power. It, along with freedom of the press, is necessary for scrutiny of acts of the government and its agents,” Andrade said.

“Furthermore, the free flow of ideas and opinions is a condition for discovering the truth, advancing knowledge and social progress, teaching us to live with plurality and diversity,” he continued. “In addition to its instrumental importance, freedom of expression is an asset or essential attribute for the individual, because it allows each person to develop their personality as fully as possible, exploring their capabilities and potential in the various aspects of their lives.” 

The MOOC is composed of four modules: 

  • Module 1 introduces international human rights law and systems for its implementation in the Brazilian context. Participants will look at freedom of expression in the Inter-American Human Rights System. 
  • Module 2 considers press freedom and access to information, including source confidentiality, right of reply and more. 
  • Module 3 looks at issues of freedom of expression addressed by the Brazilian Supreme Federal Court, including hate speech, desacato, incitement to commit a crime and unauthorized biographies. 
  • Module 4 reviews new challenges to freedom of expression brought about by the internet and social media. The instructor will discuss content moderation on social networks, with a special focus on disinformation. 

The weekly modules contain video lectures, readings, discussion forums and quizzes. Those who successfully complete all course requirements are eligible to receive a FREE certificate of completion. No formal academic credit is associated with the certificate.

“Through this course, journalists will have the opportunity to learn about the content and scope of the right to information, which includes other rights: to inform, to inform themselves and to be informed,” instructor Andrade said. “They will learn how these rights are legally guaranteed, what their limits are and in which cases press professionals can be held legally responsible. In addition, they will become aware of national and international decisions on cases involving freedoms of expression and of the press.” 

If you haven’t already, there’s still time to register for this free course. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to deepen your understanding of the legal framework governing freedom of expression and the press. 

For registration and further details, click here. Register now to join Andrade and more than 1,000 others interested in the legal framework for freedom of expression!