Definition of Advocate (Simple and Easy to Understand)

English Vocabulary Lesson

Learn a simple and easy-to-understand definition of advocate (verb and noun). Many example sentences and vocabulary exercises are included.

definition of advocate
Advocate (verb): to publicly encourage something.

Advocating means speaking up for (supporting) something or someone. You can advocate for yourself, or for other people or things. When you advocate, you are trying to convince other people to agree with your idea or join your side.
Definitions of "Advocate" (verb)

For example, let's say you advocate for animal rights. This means you support the idea that animals should be treated with respect and kindness, and that laws should protect their well-being and safety. You might do this by signing petitions, donating money to organizations that help animals, and writing letters to people in power about why animal rights are important.

Example sentences:

  • My friend advocated for better pay and more flexible hours for her co-workers.
  • The organization advocates for better community services and has been pushing for more public transportation.
  • Andrew advocates strongly against deforestation because he believes it is bad for the environment. (Deforestation means cutting down trees and forests)
  • Advocating for change is the only way to make a real impact in our community.
  • The organization advocates for fair trade practices and works to promote high standards.
  • We need more people to advocate for quality education.
  • Mr. Garcia has always advocated personal freedom and fought to end discrimination.
  • This magazine advocates a vegan lifestyle and encourages people to avoid animal products.
  • The charity advocates protecting endangered species and works to ensure their safety.
  • The problem with advocating is that it takes a lot of effort and commitment to make a real difference. Advocating requires a lot of dedication and time to produce true change.

Advocate (noun), Definition 1: someone who publicly encourages something.
Advocates fight for a particular goal or belief. They work to raise awareness about important issues and get others to join too. Advocates often create petitions, write letters to government officials, work with organizations that support their beliefs, and publish their opinions to spread the message.
Advocate (noun), Definition 1
For example, let's say someone is an anti-corruption advocate. (Corruption is when people use their power for their own benefit, instead of doing what they are supposed to do.) This means they work to fight corruption by speaking out against it, raising awareness about the issue, and working with organizations to find solutions. They may organize protests, publish articles online and in newspapers, lobby government officials, and create programs to educate people about the problem. (To lobby means to try to influence important decision-makers).

Example sentences:

  • The organization has many advocates who work to protect endangered animals.
  • She is an advocate of quality education and has been working to provide better resources to schools.
  • The lawyer is a passionate advocate for human rights and works to end discrimination.
  • We need more advocates to speak up for the environment and protect nature.
  • He is an advocate for justice and works to ensure that everyone is treated fairly.
  • Advocates work hard to create real change in society.
  • This human rights organization has many advocates who fight to end oppression. (Oppression means using power to limit another person's freedom)
  • The group of advocates is working to make sure that everyone has access to basic needs like food and a place to live.
  • Several advocates made a presentation to government officials about the importance of investing in clean water supplies.
  • She is a vocal advocate for freedom of speech and works to protect free speech rights. (Vocal means expressing opinions or ideas in a strong, clear way)

Advocate (noun), Definition 2:
someone who defends someone in a law court (a lawyer).

An advocate is a legal professional who represents someone or something in court. Advocates have the skills and knowledge to help their clients and present evidence in court. They use the law to make arguments and prepare proposals to support their clients.
Advocate (noun), Definition 2

For example, let's say someone is accused of a crime. The defendant (the person accused of the crime) will need an advocate to help them defend themselves in court. The advocate will research the case, collect evidence, analyze legal documents, interview witnesses and prepare a defense strategy.

Example sentences:

  • The advocate made a strong argument in favor of the defendant.
  • She worked closely with the advocate to prepare for her court case.
  • The advocate made sure the defendant's rights were protected throughout the court proceedings. (Proceedings are the activities in a court case)
  • The advocate presented evidence to the jury that supported the defendant's innocence. (Jury is a group of people who listen to the facts of a case in court and decide if someone is guilty or not)
  • My advocate was able to get the charges dropped due to a lack of evidence.
  • Never underestimate the power of a good advocate in court.
  • Her advocate worked day and night to ensure that justice was done.
  • Unfortunately, the advocate did not present his case in a clear and persuasive manner.
  • Can I hire an advocate to help me with my legal case?
  • A lawyer can act as an advocate in court.

The word "advocate" comes from the Latin word "advocare", which means "call for help".

It is a C2-level word. It is used in both formal and informal contexts.
talking on the radio

What Does It Mean to "Play Devil's Advocate"?

Playing Devil's Advocate is a phrase that comes from the Catholic Church. It was originally used by priests who were debating religious matters. The phrase means that you pretend to have a different opinion than you actually do, in order to understand the other person's argument better.

Today, it is used outside of the Church to refer to someone who argues against a popular opinion in order to get people to think critically or explain themselves better.

It is a way to explore all sides of an issue and to better understand it.

Here's an example:

Let's say in a group of friends everyone agrees that in order to lose weight you should eat less. Bob decides to play devil's advocate and says that there are theories that it is actually more effective to eat more. (Although Bob agrees with his friends, he is pushing for them to explain the logic behind their thinking). This encourages everyone in the group to express their own opinions more thoroughly and to think more deeply about the issue.

By playing devil's advocate, a person can help stimulate a meaningful discussion and encourage critical thinking.
What Does It Mean to "Play Devil's Advocate"?

Vocabulary Exercises

Fill in the blanks and use "advocate" correctly in the sentences. Note that "advocate" can be used as a verb or a noun.

1. The animal rights group has hired a skilled advocate ________________ their cause.

A) to advocate for
B) to advocate on
C) an advocate

2. He is an influential ________________ human rights.

A) advocating for
B) advocate to
C) advocate of

3. Marcy strongly ________________ tobacco use. She believes it is bad for people's health.

A) advocates of 
B) advocates against
C) advocates for 

4. Are you actively ________________ the environment?

A) an advocate on
B) advocating for
C) advocated 

5. The senator ________________ a policy that would reduce water pollution.

A) an advocate
B) advocated 
C) advocated by

6. Our mayor is ________________ of the new reform.

A) an advocate
B)  advocated
C) was advocating for 

7. She ________________ the use of violence. Instead, she believes in peaceful protests.

A) will never be an advocate
B) will never advocate against
C) will never advocate

8. In court, ________________ defends their client's case.

A) an advocate
B) advocating
C) advocate of



1. A | 2. C | 3. B | 4. B | 5. B | 6. A | 7. C | 8. A

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