Study Human Rights Advocacy Abroad

Back to Programs

A Guide to Studying Human Rights Abroad

Human rights is an issue which is every human’s responsibility to stand up for. Far from being confined to one country’s structural agenda, the battle for human rights is a truly global one, which transcends national borders. By studying human rights abroad and becoming a human rights advocate, you will be well on your way to becoming a better global citizen, one armed with the knowledge and power to make a real difference.

Why Study Human Rights Abroad

Those who are passionate about human rights have their work cut out for them. All over the world countless injustices are committed every day at the expense of those who do not have the resources to fend for themselves. Participating in a human rights study abroad program will give you the opportunity to learn about some of the most important issues facing our modern age, and also commence the journey of venturing out into the world to meet these problems head on as a human rights advocate.


Every country has its share of human rights crises, thus anywhere in the world can be a good place to study human rights abroad. In any one locations, there are bound to be many problems which need to be solved by human rights advocates.

Most people choose to take the battle for human rights to the developing world, where billions of people suffer from systematic oppression and lack access to basic means of mobility, such as healthcare, education, and a political voice. For example many countries throughout Central America, Africa, and the Middle East are current hotbeds of conflict and political instability. Studying human rights in these areas will expose you to some of the fundamental injustices in the world, and set you on track to begin creating positive solutions.

This is not to say that you cannot also have a rewarding experience studying human rights abroad in a country considered to be part of the developed world, or first world. It remains a common misconception that human rights issues are limited to developing countries, but really developed countries are also plagued by an immense amount of structural inequality and oppression too, just often in an alternative form. Places like Europe and the United States are completely viable locations to learn about important domestic and global issues, and these regions also boast some of the most reputable universities in the world.

Courses & Programs

The type of human rights study abroad programs available generally differ between the first and third worlds. In the first world you will likely have the opportunity to enroll at a university and take courses on a wide range of subjects that deal with micro and macroscopic issues related to human rights. Countries like Switzerland and the Netherlands are very active in pursuing global justice, and host many important international organizations, such as the UN and its subsidiaries, which you may have the opportunity to network with while studying human rights at a local university.

While you can also enroll in courses related to human rights at universities in the third world, most students will find that attending university in these nations creates a more interactive study abroad experience. Visiting rural villages under the guidance of a professor and learning about human rights issues by speaking with those experiencing disadvantage firsthand is more than common in such programs. Experiential learning focused human rights study abroad programs are most often offered in developing countries.

These are just two general categories that many human rights study abroad programs fit within, however there are a lot of unique programs out there with very different structures that merit consideration as well. Research a bunch of programs in different locations to find one that best matches with your personal interests and academic agenda.

GoAbroad Insider Tips

Gain Awareness. By traveling the world to learn about human rights issues you will raise your Global IQ and expand your knowledge of the state of our world. Studying human rights abroad and interacting with people from other countries is the perfect way to gain consciousness of human rights issues that are spread out all over the globe, not just in your home country.

Firsthand Experience. There is no teacher like experience. It is one thing to sit in a classroom and learn about human rights issues that challenge communities and societies in our modern era, but actually going out and seeing these issues for yourself is something invaluable that will inspire you to change the world (or at least your thinking).

Make a Difference. The most important part about participating in a human rights study abroad program is what it will ultimately enable you to do. This is a subject which fundamentally depends on action, and by gaining knowledge and experience on an international stage you will become fully prepared to do your part in the fight for global justice.

Read More

A Guide To
Studying Human Rights Abroad


 Find Human Rights Advocacy Study Abroad Programs Now


This listing has been saved 15 times

Intern and Study in London

Enhance your resume, get ahead academically, and expand your horizons through this summer study and intern abroad combination program in London, England! This program offers the best of a summer study abroad program with courses offered in topics such Literature, Media, Art & Architecture, Shakespeare, and International Business. Plus, you’ll gain invaluable work experience through an internshi...


This listing has been saved 8 times

AIFS Study Abroad in Rome: Semester or Year

Spend a semester or academic year in the classic city of Rome with AIFS. Earn up to 19 credits studying at Richmond University in Rome. No previous Italian language study is required. All programs begin with a 2-week language and cultural orientation. Choose between 4 academic programs: - Traditional Academic Program - Italian Language and Culture Certificate Program - International In...


This listing has been saved 1 time

IES Abroad Buenos Aires Summer- Language & Argentine Studies

With its influential history, beautiful European-style architecture, and rich cultural life, Buenos Aires is the perfect place for you to live and learn abroad. Accommodating to students of all Spanish skill levels, the Buenos Aires Language & Argentine Studies Summer Program allows you to immerse yourself in Argentine culture. Along with our required four-credit Spanish language course, you...


This listing has been saved 9 times

BUAbroad: Geneva & London: International Conflict Resolution

Boston University Study Abroad Geneva & London: International Conflict Resolution program introduces students to international conflict resolution in light of contemporary conflicts and global security concerns. The first half of the program will take place in Geneva, where students will analyze contemporary conflicts and the roles of human rights, religion, foreign intervention, and intercu...


This listing has been saved 3 times

USAC BRAZIL: Florianópolis-Global Economy

The Florianópolis program offers students the opportunity to immerse themselves in the incredibly diverse and dynamic culture of Brazil while living on a beautiful sub-tropical island and studying at one South America’s most prestigious universities. The program is ideal for students who want to learn about the world’s fifth-largest country, one of the fastest-growing economies (sixth-largest i...


API at Universidad Veritas in San Jose, Costa Rica

Experience the beautiful blend of a thriving urban environment surrounded by a flourishing rainforest! Studying at Universidad Veritas is perfect for students who are looking for a city life experience as well as the opportunity to be outdoors and enjoy the natural beauty of Costa Rica. Students can choose from a variety of subjects in English or Spanish and will have the option to participat...


This listing has been saved 36 times

ISA Study Abroad in Sydney, Australia

Sydney is a vibrant and diverse city filled with iconic landmarks like the Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbor Bridge, which epitomize the progressive and cosmopolitan wonder of the largest city in the “land down under.” Originally inhabited by Aborigines thousands of years ago, the city as we know it today began in 1788 when the British established a penal colony in the area now known as ...


This listing has been saved 3 times

CIEE High School Summer: Morocco / Mentoring Youth

This program is based out of the American Language Center (ALC), a non-profit with over 30 years of experience working with local NGOs on cross-cultural exchange. Through the ALC’s myriad outreach programs, you’ll work with local youth, collaborate with Moroccan peers, and learn to look at complex issues from multiple perspectives. You’ll pack a lot into these three weeks, and options abound...


This listing has been saved 104 times

International Internships—Costa Rica | Guatemala | Peru

Do your international internship with Maximo Nivel - get international work experience in Costa Rica, Guatemala, and Peru. - Education (K-12) - Special Education - Micro-Business - Hospitality & Tourism - Human Rights - Medical Since 2003, Maximo Nivel has been a leader in educational travel and study abroad. Our work-study-travel programs host more than 4,000 people per ye...


This listing has been saved 21 times

Study Abroad in Rome, Italy at John Cabot University

Studying abroad is an incredible opportunity to build your resume while you experience the world, learn a new language, and make international friends. As an American university in the historic center of Rome, Italy, John Cabot University allows you to become a part of our international campus community representing 70 countries while you experience the incredible city of Rome. We accept st...


This listing has been saved 3 times

Laws and Legal Traditions in the European Union

Forum-Nexus offers a unique opportunity for Law major. Students will have the opportunity to study this course that provides an overview of the history, evolution, and current challenges facing the European Union, with an emphasis on legal, regulatory, and human rights issues. Students will also have the opportunity to visit multinational companies and international organizations and understand...


This listing has been saved 14 times

Study Abroad in Greece with CYA! (Semester/Academic Year)

CYA has offered study abroad programs in a wide range of academic disciplines for over 50 years. With supplemental activities varying from archaeological digs to onsite courses, study-travel, and volunteer opportunities, students are able to actively engage with their course material. Students live in apartments in downtown Athens and will be inspired to immerse themselves in the environment an...


This listing has been saved 14 times

Mente Argentina: Semester & Academic Year at Top Universities in Argentina

Study abroad for a semester or an academic year in Argentina through Mente Argentina's flexible, exciting Academic Semester and Academic Year Programs. Study in an Argentine university and obtain academic credit at their home university. Mente Argentina has made agreements with the most prestigious universities in Argentina. We offer individualized pre-departure consulting for each student t...


This listing has been saved 28 times

American University of Beirut

The American University of Beirut has long been admired for the strength and breadth of its academic programs and its commitment to a broad-based liberal arts education. All entering undergraduate students are required to complete a number of general education courses that provide them with the opportunity to explore many different disciplines. The University's Faculties of Agricultural and Foo...


This listing has been saved 13 times

Summer Spanish Immersion - Study &/or Intern!

The perfect opportunity to greatly improve your Spanish! Immerse yourself in the Spanish language and culture! Take Spanish courses for academic credit, live with Spanish speaking roommates, and use Spanish in daily life. Additionally, you have the option to add an internship, for credit, in your field. This program is ideal for those who truly want to improve their Spanish language skil...