The Model United Nations Revisited

Simulation &amp Gaming 03/1995; 26(1):27-35. DOI: 10.1177/1046878195261003

ABSTRACT For over 50 years, students have organized, conducted, and participated in a simulation of international organizations. This sophisticated simulation of current international affairs, called the Model United Nations (Model UN), is facing unexpected challenges and new opportunities. The challenges before the Model UN program include closing the "reality gap" between the Model UN and its real-world counterpart and finding ways to increase the involvement of the academic and education professional communities. The opportunities for the Model UN program include an increasing global reach to countries in Africa, Latin America, Asia, and Eastern Europe and the infinite possibilities for enhancing the learning experience of the Model UN through application of telecommunications and other information technologies.

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    ABSTRACT: For the past 50 years, scholars and practitioners of international relations have used simulations as experimental, predictive, and educational tools to model real-world environments. This article will focus on the educational applications of simulations in international relations (IR), first reviewing the development of IR simulations and then tracing this history by examining the International Communication and Negotiation Simulations (ICONS) Project at the University of Maryland as a representative example of this genre. It will examine in particular the use of information technologies in facilitating and delivering simulations, and conclude with a brief discussion of how computer-assisted simulations have, in some cases, anticipated trends in the real world of diplomacy, and in others, attempted to respond to new trends.
    Simulation &amp Gaming 12/2001; 32(4):537-551. DOI:10.1177/104687810103200409
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    ABSTRACT: Model United Nations (MUN) provides a great forum for students to learn about global issues and political processes, while also practicing communication and negotiation skills that will serve them well for a lifetime. Intercollegiate MUN conferences can be problematic, however, in terms of logistics, budgets, and student participation. In order to improve the educational utility of the MUN experience while minimizing some of the drawbacks that accompany lengthy travel, the authors created an intercollegiate scrimmage league. This paper details our experience with MUN, examining the strengths and weaknesses of traditional competitions, our reasons for starting a scrimmage league, and the particulars of putting together such a league. We then evaluate both the challenges and successes of this approach and discuss our future plans. It is hoped that this paper will stimulate more discussion of useful techniques for improving the MUN experience.
    Journal of Political Science Education 02/2009; 5(1). DOI:10.1080/15512160802611963
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    ABSTRACT: Increasingly, simulation-based teaching and learning is finding a place within politics and international relations (IR) programmes. The majority of literature on this style of teaching and learning has positioned it as both an aid to content delivery and as a response to the many challenges facing contemporary higher education. Little guidance is given, however, to the practical considerations of using simulations as a component of assessment or as informing assessed tasks. This article draws upon the experience of the authors in adapting the well-established Model United Nations (MUN) simulation programme for delivery as an assessed module at a British university. This has involved balancing institutional teaching, assessment and validation requirements with the successful simulation of diplomatic practice. The article introduces the MUN simulation and explores the extant pedagogic literature encouraging the use of simulation-based learning in IR curricula, before moving on to provide an overview of the rationale for the various decisions the authors have made in adapting the simulation for delivery as an assessed curriculum component. The article asserts the value of introducing assessed simulations within IR coursework and provides guidance on how student performance in pedagogic simulations might best be assessed.
    European Political Science 09/2013; 12(3). DOI:10.1057/eps.2013.13 · 0.20 Impact Factor