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Course 3E03: Use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) for Human Rights Work - Advanced course
2 June-26 July 2003

Instructor: Frank Elbers

This distance learning course is intended for staff members of human rights and social justice organisations who are responsible for information and communication (i.e. information officers, webmasters/webweavers) within their organisation. Information and communication technologies (ICTs) is a dynamic new field where success is dependent upon skill development and practical experience. Participants will be introduced to proven methods of using ICTs (mainly the Internet) to promote their human rights work. Students will become equipped with the knowledge and tools to more effectively design and implement listservs, web sites, databases or multi-media for advocacy campaigns, training and information management.

This course involves 40 hours of reading, on-line working groups, interaction with students and instructor/facilitator and assignments, and is offered over a two-month period, beginning on 2 June 2003. The course is based on a participatory, active learning approach, with an emphasis on peer-to-peer learning.

Participants are expected to come to the course with ideas about how their organisation can integrate or further develop the use of ICTs within the organisation. Participants will do the required reading, prepare interim and final assignments and participate in group discussions. In addition to the facilitation by Frank Elbers, there will be some presentations by representatives of international and national human rights organisations who have innovatively used ICTs. Participants will receive a Certificate of Participation upon successful completion of the course. The maximum number of participants is 25.

Course outline

Week 1: Using ICTs - Special Considerations for Human Rights Work
Week 2: Research & Documentation
Week 3: Outreach and Information Dissemination
Week 4: Advocacy and Campaigning
Week 5: Information Management
Week 6: On-line Collaboration
Week 7: On-line and Distance Learning
Week 8: Assessment of use of ICTs in participants' organisations

About the instructor/facilitator

Frank Elbers is Deputy Director of Human Rights Education Associates (HREA) and coordinates HREA's Distance Learning Programme. He has been responsible since 1998 for the implementation of HREA's web site and its on-line Resource Centre and Learning Centre.

Before joining HREA, the instructor worked for the Anne Frank Foundation (the Netherlands), the Netherlands Helsinki Committee and SATELLIFE, an international development organisation that promotes the use of ICTs by health professionals in developing countries. Mr. Elbers has conducted ICT trainings and workshops around the world, including for the Education Development Center, and UNESCO. He is moderator of the HURIDOCS-Tech listserv on the use of new technologies for human rights work and has facilitated various on-line working groups for the United Nations Development Fund for Women's (UNIFEM) on women's human rights.

Who should apply

The course is intended for staff members of human rights/social justice organisations who are responsible for information and communication policy/programmes. Candidates should have a good written command of English and have high competence and comfort with computer and Internet use. Please be aware that this is an advanced course; an introductory course on using the Internet for human rights work (Course 7E) is offered twice a year.


The course tuition fee is USD 375 and needs to be paid in full by 26 May 2003 in order to guarantee a place in the course. Payments can be made with international money orders, checks in US Dollars, via bank transfer, or with major credit cards. A limited number of scholarships is available for this course for applicants from Africa, Middle East, Asia, Eastern Europe/Newly Independent States and Latin American/Caribbean.


Deadline for applications was 1 May 2003. We are no longer accepting applications.

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