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Effects of a Simulation on Exam Scores and Teaching Evaluation Results
Unformatted Document Text:  team to another or as press releases made available to all the teams in the simulation after review by the MUN staff in the simulation’s command center. Students appeared to quickly understand the simulation’s structure and rules despite having never before participated in such an exercise. Most students quickly became engaged in the role-playing and real-time aspects of the simulation by discussing possible courses of action, seeking out information from the command center or from the internet via their chairpersons, and issuing action orders in a timely fashion. The simulation represented a large time commitment for students outside of class, but the vast majority of students attended the entire simulation, demonstrating at a fairly high degree of interest among students in the exercise. The quantity and quality of student participation in decision-making process often varied greatly within each team, however. Discussion and debate were sometimes dominated by three or four students on a team, with two or three students remaining silent. Students demonstrated differing levels of familiarity with the Middle East during the simulations, and some were ignorant of basic geographical, cultural, and historical knowledge about the region. Assignments and Feedback Students who participated in the simulation were required to complete assignments that students in other sections of the course did not. i Prior to the simulation, each participant was required to analyze the international interests and behavior of the nation-state or organization to which she or he had been assigned and write a two-page synopsis of findings. Directions for the assignment specified that each student should write the analysis from the perspective of the particular role he or she was to play during the simulation; for example, a student assigned the role of minister of defense for Israel would need to concisely identify regional threats to Israel’s security, its military capabilities, and its defense policy. Students presented their analyses either

Authors: Raymond, Chad.
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team to another or as press releases made available to all the teams in the simulation after review
by the MUN staff in the simulation’s command center.
Students appeared to quickly understand the simulation’s structure and rules despite
having never before participated in such an exercise. Most students quickly became engaged in
the role-playing and real-time aspects of the simulation by discussing possible courses of action,
seeking out information from the command center or from the internet via their chairpersons, and
issuing action orders in a timely fashion. The simulation represented a large time commitment
for students outside of class, but the vast majority of students attended the entire simulation,
demonstrating at a fairly high degree of interest among students in the exercise.
The quantity and quality of student participation in decision-making process often varied
greatly within each team, however. Discussion and debate were sometimes dominated by three
or four students on a team, with two or three students remaining silent. Students demonstrated
differing levels of familiarity with the Middle East during the simulations, and some were
ignorant of basic geographical, cultural, and historical knowledge about the region.
Assignments and Feedback
Students who participated in the simulation were required to complete assignments that
students in other sections of the course did not.
Prior to the simulation, each participant was
required to analyze the international interests and behavior of the nation-state or organization to
which she or he had been assigned and write a two-page synopsis of findings. Directions for the
assignment specified that each student should write the analysis from the perspective of the
particular role he or she was to play during the simulation; for example, a student assigned the
role of minister of defense for Israel would need to concisely identify regional threats to Israel’s
security, its military capabilities, and its defense policy. Students presented their analyses either


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