Model United Nation is an activity dating back more than seventy years when students held a series of Model League of Nations. For more than fifty years, students around the world have simulated the UN. These simulations take different forms and are initiated for a variety of reasons.
The educational value of this simulation is to expose the students to a different type of learning experience. By participating in this type of simulation, students will:
- Sharpen problem solving techniques
- Improve research and communication skills
- Learn tolerance towards diverse groups who hold different opinions
Most Model UN conferences follow a similar structure. Students prepare for the conference by researching their delegation’s viewpoint and devising a solution (resolution) for the issues of their committee. In conference lobbying, they work with a small number of other delegates to come to a compromise on their different solutions, and submit one official resolution for their small group. During debate time, these resolutions are debated by the entire committee and voted on. If passed by the committee, the resolution may continue on to the General Assembly where all conference participants debate it.
Model UN is not just hard work. The conference itself has many enjoyable aspects, especially during lobbying and debate time. Social activities are also planned, and students quickly develop close friendships with their fellow delegates, some of whom may live in different countries.