JUS5630 – Privacy and Data Protection

Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

The course studies legal rules on data protection—i.e., a set of norms which specifically govern the processing of data relating to persons (personal data) in order to protect, at least partly, the privacy and related interests of those persons.

Outside Europe, such norms are often described in terms of protecting “privacy”, “information privacy”, or increasingly, “data privacy”. The main focus of the course is on European and international codes, primarily the European Union (EU) General Data Protection Regulation (Regulation (EU) 2016/679), the European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (ECHR) Article 8, the EU ePrivacy Directive (Directive 2002/58/EC), along with case law pursuant to these instruments. Special attention is also given to the interplay between data protection law and intellectual property rights, particularly in the context of efforts to curb digital “piracy”, regulate digital platforms and increase the transparency of automated decisional processes.

The themes taken up in the course may be summed up with the following key-words: privacy, data protection, surveillance, cyberspace, intellectual property, algorithmic regulation, freedom of expression.

For students enrolled in Rettsvitenskap (jus) (master - 5 år): Have you considered a specialization as part of your degree? The course is part of the profile Personvern, sikkerhet og digital forvaltning.

Read more about profiles.

Learning outcome

The primary aim of the course is to facilitate a solid understanding of legal policies on privacy and data protection, particularly in the context of distributed computer networks such as the Internet. More specifically, the course seeks to illuminate the rationale and regulatory logic of such policies along with the various technological challenges that they face.

The course seeks also to illuminate legal-regulatory issues related to freedom of expression, the increasing automatisation of decision-making processes, the increasingly cross-national character of organisational transactions, and the interaction of legal norms with the regulatory effects of IT and other non-legal instruments, such as sectoral codes of practice.

From the course, one gains a firm understanding of the basic rules and principles for protecting privacy and personal information, particularly as laid down in EU and other international instruments. One gains also insight into the myriad regulatory challenges in the field. Further, one learns about the potential for technological development to both threaten and enhance privacy protection.

A further aim of the course is not just to impart knowledge of the relevant legal rules as they currently stand but also to encourage critical appraisal of them. This involves analysing and challenging the assumptions upon which the rules are based, and discussion of alternative regulatory possibilities.


You may register for this course if you have admission to a Master’s programme at UiO or the faculty's exchange programme. You can also register for this course if you do not have admission to any programme at UiO, but meet the formal prerequistites.

All students are required meet the formal prerequistites.

Have you met the formal prerequisites at another institution than the University of Oslo, and the results are not formally registered at UiO, you must apply for admission to courses at Master’s level . Students with admission to Master’s degree programmes at other faculties than The Faculty of Law must also apply for admission.

When your admission is in order you must register for courses in StudentWeb


Formal prerequisite knowledge

Students must fill one of these requirements:

  • Passed 1st - 3rd year of the 5-years degree Master of Laws (Master i rettsvitenskap at UiO) (or exams that qualify for exemption for these) or
  • Hold a 5-years Master’s degree in Laws (Master i rettsvitenskap at UiO) or equivalent.

Exemptions from the formal prerequisites will be given to students with admission to the faculty's own exchange or master’s degree programmes. This rule does not apply to students with admission to other master’s degree programmes at the University of Oslo, unless otherwise agreed.


Lectures, 20 hours.

Language of teaching

Language of teaching for this course is English. This means that all communication during lectures/seminars will be in English, and all literature and auxiliary materials are in English.

Access to teaching

A student who has completed compulsory instruction and coursework and has had these approved, is not entitled to repeat that instruction and coursework. A student who has been admitted to a course, but who has not completed compulsory instruction and coursework or had these approved, is entitled to repeat that instruction and coursework, depending on available capacity.


The exam will be a 24 hour home exam, maximum 3000 words on master’s level and 2000 words on bachelor’s level. The word limit can be exceeded up to maximum 10% at both levels.

Footnotes should be included in the word count of the main text. Not included in this count: front page (title etc.), summary, table of contents and references (bibliography). (If relevant for the paper).

Assignments/papers with text exceeding the word limit will not be accepted.

Examination support material

All support materials will be permitted throughout the exam.

Use of sources and rules for citing 

Be sure that you are familiar with the use of sources and the rules for citing/quoting from others’ work. UiO uses a plagiarism checking tool as one of several instruments for detecting suspicion of cheating and attempted cheating.

The standard rules on cheating and plagiarism apply to assignments. This means that you must provide a reference whenever you draw upon another person’s ideas, words or research in your answer to the exam question(s). You cannot copy text directly from textbooks, journal articles, court judgments etc. without highlighting that the text is copied.

Thus, pieces of text quoted verbatim from these and other sources must be italicised or otherwise highlighted so that it is obvious that the pieces of text are quotes.

Example of highlighting in a text:

"Laurent Bailay and Bernard Van der Lande propose to define a mobile payment as a “payment for products or services between two parties for which a mobile device, such as a mobile phone, plays a key role in the realization of the payment”. (European Commission, GREEN PAPER Towards an integrated European market for card, internet and mobile payments, page 5)"

Use of sources and citations

Failure to cite sources or highlight quotes in your exam answer may be considered as evidence of cheating.

Previous exam papers

Language of examination

The examination text is given in English, and you submit your response in English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.


Marking criteria 

This  guide is used by examiners for grading this course.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take this exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

There are special rules for resitting a passed examination in the master's programme in Law.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


The language for this course is English. Students enrolled in the
Masterprogrammet i rettsvitenskap must pass one
English subject as part of their degree, this course will meet these

This subject is taught at Master 's level. The subject is also taught at Bachelor's level (10 ECTS credits), see JUR1630 – Privacy and Data Protection. Please see the chapter above, regarding overlap. For instances of overlap, credits will be deducted on the subject at Bachelors's level.

Facts about this course






Every autumn

The course was offered a last time in the spring semester 2022.


Every autumn

Teaching language