The Conflict Transformation in Northern Ireland class is amazing and very interesting, you'll learn so much and Ireland is Beautiful. AIM overseas is very helpful with setting everything up before you leave and Queens University is very helpful once youre in Ireland. The highlights of the programs are firstly the excursions, being able to explore the country and learn the background behind everything throughout Belfast is amazing and is so different then just walking around by yourself. Secondly, honestly some of the classes would be a highlight for example a city without walls class was so interesting and it was able to show how bad the divide in Ireland/ Northern Ireland is.

- Giselle Matthews, former AIM Overseas participant

Applications are now open for this program for July 2020! Click here to apply now.

This July, students from a range of academic backgrounds have the opportunity to participate in the Conflict Resolution in Northern Ireland program taught by Queen’s University Belfast in the UK. 

This 4 week program offers a comparative international perspective on conflict transformation and social justice, drawing on the development of conflict in Ireland where the program is delivered. Case studies and affairs from around the world will be strongly delved into, including those from Europe, the Middle East, Asia and America. Those teaching on the program come from a range of disciplines including Law, Politics, International Studies, Criminology, Anthropology, Human Rights and other humanities and social science subjects. 

The program will include an evaluation of how religion has impacted and significantly shaped peace-building. In effect, students will expand on their knowledge and learn more about how interventions and policies dedicated to conflict transformation have failed or succeeded. It will position the importance of security, transitional justice and the role of restorative justice in democracy building. 

Understanding how border conflicts and social injustice encourage conflict and violence will also be studied using the methods of human rights and social inclusion. Other important features of peace-building that include negotiation and dialogue, the problem of dealing with victim issue and perpetrators of injustice will also form part of the overall learning around the research methods and ethics required for the restoration of social justice. 

In addition to the academic classes, a range of cultural activities and relevant field trips will also be organised as part of the interactive program. 

Northern Ireland is a great place to see first hand conflict transformation and how politics, religion and other actors play in the peace building program. It is the perfect course for anyone studying International Relations, Diplomacy, Law, etc. I would say the field trips were the best parts as it allowed us to explore the rich beauty of Northern Ireland and meet locals.Being in a diverse class was also worthwhile as we were able to develop relationships with people from all sorts of backgrounds and identities and brings us one step closer to becoming global citizens!

- Aidan Laird, former AIM Overseas participant

This program aims to provide a rich academic experience for all and to inspire you to develop your research interests in Global Peace, Security and Justice. The program also aims to create an environment of engagement between international students and local NGO's, politicians and others involved in conflict and conflict transformation.

Over the course of the program you will cover the following topics:
Week 1: Understanding Conflict Transformation and Social Justice
The Summer School begins with meeting staff, tours of Queen’s University and an evening reception. The course starts with a session outlining the history of political identities, conflicts and legacies that have framed the Northern Ireland Troubles and ensuing Good Friday Peace Agreement. The specifics of ethno-religious and political identity constructions are further detailed in relation to Unionist/loyalist/Protestant and Nationalist/republican/ Catholic histories and identity markers, together with the shifts that the post-conflict context presents in identity claims today. We move on to consider theories of conflict transformation and social justice, discourses of conflict resolution and issues of policing which will facilitate discussions with local community leaders and police. The latter part of the week provides the opportunity to showcase some of the best scenery and the most famous history that Northern Ireland has to offer in the tour of the Antrim Glens, Giant’s Causeway and North Coast.

Week 2: Politics, Peacebuilding and Governance
Week 2 begins by examining conflict in global comparative perspective with examples from Mozambique, Colombia and filmic representations in Chile and Northern Ireland. We then reflect upon peace dialogues closer to home with the opportunity to meet representatives of Northern Ireland’s political parties followed by a tour of Stormont. We then take up questions of performance in drama and theatre looking at how image theatre work embodies conflict trajectories over time. Thursday offers a field trip to the museums, Guildhall and historical tour of the City of Derry/Londonderry, a former UK Capital of Culture City 2013.

Week 3: Protests, Parades and Educating Youth
Week 3 begins with an analysis of issues of peace-brokering in Northern Ireland examined in an innovative project on prison memory archives and the opportunity to tour the historical Crumlin Road Gaol. Further discussions around dealing with the past are held with various representatives of NGOs and community leaders before moving into analyses of the changing educational processes that have shaped initiatives around integrated and shared education. The week ends with a celebration of creativity in displays of national identity, and performance techniques in parading and marching bands, taking us from analysis to practice. We will have the opportunity to attend the Parade events on the Twelfth of July with an option to go to the parade field to hear Orange Lodge speeches.

Week 4: Securitization, Gender Justice and Future Visions
The final week begins with the themes of memory and commemoration highlighted in a visit to the world’s largest Titanic attraction. We analyse how international threats to peace are managed by technological advances in securitization, and consider conflicts in global comparative perspective and gender justice spanning Colombia, the Middle East and India. We round off the summer school on notes of hope for our post-conflict society, as we hear from key religious leaders on their ongoing efforts in local and international peacebuilding.

You will be given the opportunity to meet with some of Northern Ireland's decision-makers - key politicians, church and community leaders. There are excursions to archaeological, historical and cultural sites in Belfast and beyond. With Irish music and dance evenings as well.

Below is a tentative list of visits that are included in the program (*subject to final change):
- Tour the historical city of Derry/Londonderry
- Visit to Titanic Exhibition
- Trip to Northern Ireland's Causeway Coast and the Antrim Glens
- Belfast's mural and peacewalls
- The Crumlin Road Gaol
- Visit to Stormont
- Orangefest

Queen's University Belfast

Queen’s University Belfast is a public research university, located in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Established by Queen Victoria in 1845, Queen’s is one of the UK’s leading research intensive universities and a member of the Russell Group, an independent body of 24 top-ranking, research-led universities in the UK. These strengths demonstrated by exceptional teaching standards and independent assessments reflect how Queen’s is one of the top ranked universities in the UK. Its location in Northern Ireland makes it ideal for an in-depth look at conflict resolution, as the country has historically been a part of religious and political violent engagements known as ‘The Troubles’, which took place over a period of 3 decades.

Queen’s was also ranked one of the top 200 universities in the world, placing it in the top 1% of world universities and ranked in the top 100 universities in the world for international faculty (57th) and international students (66th) (QS World University Rankings 2014-2015).

Queen’s is at the heart of the city’s culture, arts and social scenes. Whatever the time of year, Belfast is the ultimate student city, offering a huge selection of places to shop, socialise, eat and relax all within walking distance of the cosmopolitan University campus. No matter how large or small your budget is, or what your interests are, you are sure to find something to see and do in Belfast.

This program draws on a range of professors and experts in their field.

A full list of academic staff will be provided to you prior to arrival.

You will likely be housed in ELMS BT2 student resident which is 1.5km (about 15 minutes) from Queen's main campus and is located in Belfast city centre. The accommodation is in close proximity to popular restaurants and local supermarkets.

You will be staying in a private room which will reside inside an 'apartment' which is comprised of a maximum of 6 en suite private bedrooms and a communal equipped kitchen and living room area with television and sofa. There is also a self-service laundry facility located within the accommodation (equipped with washing machines, dryers, irons and ironing boards)

Hear the experiences of other students on this program

“In class, we were informed that bonfires would be ignited that night around Belfast. Apparently this happens every night before the 12th of July celebrations, and protestant street parties often accompany them. We had a look at the bonfires being built during the day, and found they were mostly made of wooden pallets and tires, with many of them being over 30 metres tall. During the night, my friends watched the events unfold…”

- Tiarne, Bachelor of Journalism. READ MORE 

Queen’s University is located in the heart of Belfast, Northern Ireland’s capital city – a bustling, cosmopolitan city boasting a vibrant social life and rich cultural heritage.

Belfast is one of Europe’s most friendly and fashionable regional capitals. Described by Lonely Planet as a ‘must-see visitor destination’, it was also voted one of the world’s top 10 destinations by National Geographic Traveler in 2012. Referred to as a ‘treasure with an incredible atmosphere’,Belfast offers a variety of cultural, sporting, educational and social opportunities.

Belfast was recently revealed as the most affordable city for students to live and study in, as shown by the 2015 Student Living Index, conducted by NatWest.

Northern Ireland is renowned for its beautiful beaches and coastal scenery and has a fascinating history and cultural heritage that showcases stunning castles, monasteries and historic industry. It is the perfect UK study destination for students who want to easily explore Ireland, the UK and mainland Europe.


All our programs are designed to count for credit as electives. However, it is up to your university to decide whether they will approve some credit for your participation in one of our programs. Normally it is a course convenor, Head of Department or program convenor who approves your credit.

Your course convenors will not be able to approve credit for a course unless you have a copy of the syllabus so you should not visit your course convenor until you have received a copy of the course syllabus from AIM Overseas. You will receive the syllabus upon being assessed as eligible for the program.

For more information, see our Credit and Funding pages.


You might be able to obtain the $6000+ OS-HELP loan, as well as a scholarship from your university, when participating in an AIM Overseas program.

Our programs are designed so that eligible Australian students can access the OS-HELP scheme, which can provide funding of over $6,000 for international study experiences.

We give you detailed information about OS-HELP and how to apply for it in your Initial Consultation with us, which we further outline in an email following your Initial Consultation. 

You can also find more information about OS-HELP on our Credit and Funding pages.

Many Australian universities offer scholarships for their students to take part in overseas study programs. We will provide you information on scholarships that we are aware of at your university as part of your application/acceptance for a program. You can also check your university’s international office webpage to see what might be offered.

Applications for our July 2020 intake are currently open. You can apply online for a program here.

You can also REGISTER YOUR INTEREST for a January 2021 program, meaning you’ll receive more program info and updates.

The application process for this program can be seen in the mindmap below.

mind mapPrograms are usually over-subscribed, so it is really important that you take care of things as quickly as possible. We’re here to help and will provide you with information and reminders about what you need to do at various stages.

For more information, see our Frequently Asked Questions. Alternatively, you are welcome to submit an enquiry or register your interest. Registering your interest means you’ll receive updates (via email and phone) prior to the application deadline.