Apply Now Clicking "Apply Now" opens the link in a new window.

How to Apply

Apply through Job ID: 194436

Please upload the following documents as one PDF document with your application: (1) a cover letter, and (2) CV (including names of two faculty references).

The cover letter should address your specific interest in the position and outline skills and experiences that directly relate to this position. If you have held a GSI position at U-M, as part of your cover letter please provide the course title, number, term, and faculty instructor for each course taught. Please also attach E&E summary sheets for the U-M courses where you have been a GSI.

Posting begin date:  February 22, 2021

Posting end date:  March 8, 2021

Notification date:  March 29, 2021

Applicants may request status of his or her application at any time.

Course Description

How did ‘human rights’ become today’s moral language? Visible in the press, social media, blogs, tweets, etc. human rights have become the dominant frame by which recent generations frame their idealism. Contrary to conventional wisdom, ‘human rights’, as a moral lens through which to see the world, did not always exist. Instead, ‘human rights’, both as a practice and a discourse, are a post-WWII phenomenon with roots in the European Enlightenment. This course focuses on the long history of how categories such a ‘human’ and ‘rights’ came about, how they were combined and put to use in the last two centuries. The course outlines the longer winding history of human rights as a both a regime of inclusion and exclusion. Herein, special attention is placed on: The histories of rights, humanitarian sentiments and practice, and the establishment of a body of international law in the context of shifting international politics in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Therein the course highlights the  interaction of marginal groups with international law and the language of human rights; The challenges that accompany the invention and application of international norms and laws. It is the goal of this course to perhaps surprise. A critical historical study will reveal the controversial nature of ideals that are generally taken for granted.

FTE:  Two positions at 0.50 FTE (each GSI leads three (3) discussion sections per week)

Appointment period:  Fall Term, 2021

Course name: INTLSTD 301.001 - Topics in International Studies: History and Practice of Human Rights

Lecture meets TuTh 10:00 to 11:30 AM.  See the Fall Term LSA course guide schedule for details.


The GSIs selected for this course will have the following responsibilities:

  • Grading, including written assignments, exams, and class participation
  • Leading three discussion sections per week
  • Course logistics, including maintenance of the course web site(Canvas);
  • Attending lectures
  • Student advising, with regular office hours, especially before and after assignments and exams.

Required Qualifications*

Graduate students in any social science or humanities discipline or professional school are invited to apply. 

Desired Qualifications*

Knowledge of the literature and history of human rights, humanitarianism, international relations, international legal instruments and enforcement mechanism. Undergraduate teaching experience a plus. Related experience in human rights work and advocacy.

Contact Information

Please address applications to Professor Melanie Tanielian

Decision Making Process

Final applicant selection will be made by Professor Melanie Tanielian

Selection Process

We will choose applicants with the strongest and most relevant teaching experience, work experience, and academic training.  

Unsuccessful applications will be retained for consideration in the event that there are last minute openings for available positions.  Upon request, any applicant denied employment will receive, within fourteen  (14) calendar days, a written explanation of the reasons for denial of employment, and/or an in-person interview with the hiring agent(s) to be scheduled at a mutually agreed upon time.  In the event that an Employee does not receive his or her preferred assignment, he or she can request a written explanation or an in-person interview with the hiring agent(s) to be scheduled at a mutually agreed upon time.

GEO Contract Information

The University will not discriminate against any applicant for employment because of race, creed, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, genetic information, marital status, familial status, parental status or pregnancy status, sex, gender identity or expression (whether actual or perceived), sexual orientation, age, height, weight, disability, citizenship status, veteran status, HIV antibody status, political belief, membership in any social or political organization, participation in a grievance or complaint whether formal or informal, medical conditions including those related to pregnancy, childbirth and breastfeeding, arrest record, or any other factor where the item in question will not interfere with job performance and where the employee is otherwise qualified. The University of Michigan agrees to abide by the protections afforded employees with disabilities as outlined in the rules and regulations which implement Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Information for the Office for Institutional Equity may be found at and for the University Ombuds at

Unsuccessful applications will be retained for consideration in the event that there are last minute openings for available positions. In the event that an employee does not receive their preferred assignment, they can request a written explanation or an in-person interview with the hiring agents(s) to be scheduled at a mutually agreed upon time.

This position, as posted, is subject to a collective bargaining agreement between the Regents of the University of Michigan and the Graduate Employees' Organization, American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO 3550.

Standard Practice Guide 601.38, Required Disclosure of Felony Charges and/or Felony Convictions applies to all Graduate Student Assistants (GSAs). SPG 601.38 may be accessed online at , and its relation to your employment can be found in MOU 10 of your employment contract.

U-M EEO/AA Statement

The University of Michigan is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer.