English for activists

English for activists

What is an activist?
Do you go to protests, talk to people so they will sign your petition, or volunteer your time for something you are passionate about?  If so, you are an activist.  Another word for activist is an advocate.  This is a person that speaks up for someone who can’t.  Some activists and advocates are volunteers or help with a project.  Others are employed by organisations.

Who is this course for?
Non-native English speakers who have reached at least B1 (intermediate) level.

How long will this course take?
This is a flexible course that you do at your own pace.

What will I need?
Not much!  There will be vocabulary quizzes, but I also provide a handout with vocabulary and key take-away messages for each lesson.

Why English?
There are 1.5 billion English speakers in the world today.  That’s 20 per cent of the world’s population!  If you can communicate your message in both your mother tongue and English – imagine how many more people you can reach.

Think about the impact that Greta Thunberg has had.  What if she didn’t speak English? Could she have inspired millions to join her on her Fridays for Future school strikes?  Would she have been able to address members of the UN, the US Congress, or the press?  But it’s not enough to just speak a language, you have to do it in a way that makes people want to listen, understand, and want to do something.  This course will help you do this.

What can I expect?
This course is to help you understand the world of advocacy along with vocabulary and functional language.  This course does not cover grammar.

Course overview


  • What activism and advocacy is
  • Types of activism
  • How to read a mission and vision statement
  • The basics of effective communication


  • emails
  • press releases
  • reports
  • grant applications
  • social media


  • Making telephone calls
  • Conference calls and meetings
  • Presentations
  • Socialising and small talk


  • Comprehension and analysis
  • Summarising data


  • Understanding the key points of an argument
  • The power of persuasion



Laura Marshallsay

I am a Business English consultant in Frankfurt, Germany, but I've spent much of my life working and volunteering on issues such as women's rights and the environment. Let me help you help others! Qualifications: CELTA certified, M.A. Historical Studies, B.A History and Writing

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