Model United Nations
High School Course Syllabus
Instructor: Mr. Douglas Mabie
Length of Course: Semester
There are two main components to this class: the history of the United Nations, its member nations and its efforts
in fulfilling its charter; and study and preparation for participation in a Model United Nations (MUN) simulation.
MUN is a student-run replica of the United Nations General Assembly in New York. Student delegates represent
various member countries on specific topics of world concern, presenting formal resolutions to real issues for
consideration at the conference.
1. To study the history, organization, and policies of the UN
2. To become more aware of current events and to attempt to place them in the context of international relations
and world history
3. To learn to work effectively in small and large groups
4. To develop, practice and use effective public speaking skills (discussions, formal presentations and formal
5. To refine research skills using home, school and community resources (Embassies, World Bank, USAID, UN
agencies, etc) published materials, interviews, and other human resources
6. To study, organize and strategically use policy papers, resolutions, parliamentary procedure and negotiating skills to
support national initiatives.
7. To begin to understand and empathize with the foreign policy goals of their home country and those of the
country they represent and to formulate strategies promoting their assigned countries policies and initiatives.
Major Concepts Covered
1. Aside from introductory material concerning the United Nation’s history and institutional structure, this course
will cover significantly different material from semester to semester, depending on the topics chosen by the
MUN to be attended.
2. The development of skills (research, organization, written and oral presentation, negotiation/consensus
building) will be a significant focus.
A student completing the MUN course will have:
- knowledge of the United Nations and international affairs in general as well as developed the habit of following
current world events.
- completed research that extends beyond the library by seeking out experts, conducting interviews and finding
special resources of embassies, conferences, country reports, and international agencies and organizations
- gained confidence and practice in preparing and giving informational/persuasive oral presentations.
- begun to understand the process of looking at a nation from its point of view rather than the individual’s
national/cultural point of view.
- become more proficient working small and large groups to achieve desired goals.
As much as is practical, the class will be student-directed and action-oriented, with the teacher acting as a research
resource and public speaking and political/technical writing coach. Students will practice public speaking, debate,
discussion techniques and question asking as they relate to current events and the focus of the MUN’s issues. They
will assume roles of Secretary General and Parliamentarian to direct proceedings and practice parliamentary
procedure. Former MUN participants and guest speakers will be invited to address the class.
Follows Student Handbook with focus on the following areas:
1. Research and the organization of information, including writing of resolutions and proposals;
2. Development of public speaking skills, participation in discussions, debates, and assigned formal speeches.
3. Use of class time in completing class work, serious participation in class discussions, and serious contributions
to group research projects;
4. LATE WORK POLICY
All work is due at the beginning of the period.
Homework may be handed in up to one class period later for a grade of no higher than 60% (D-). After
that, late work becomes a zero. I do not accept computer excuses, so please give yourself enough time to
complete your work and account for computer blips, deletions, crashes print errors, etc.
Students who have been absent are responsible to inform themselves re: missed work. Students are
responsible for obtaining lecture notes from fellow students, or watching videos on their own time in the
Additional Expectations (including supplies)
All students need access to a computer and the willingness, initiative, and ability to independently travel to local
agencies and institutions to acquire materials and information and to conduct interviews. Students are responsible
for maintaining necessary materials in an organized manner. A folder or a binder (or the section of one) is required.
The MUN Conference Experience
AES participates in an MUN conference as part of the class. The school administration supports student
participation by covering 40% of the cost of this trip. The remaining 60% must be covered by the student. This
amount can range from $500 to $1000 depending upon location. The convention this semester will be held in Taipai
from November 16 to 18. Students will miss 1 day of school. Current estimates are that he trip will cost
approximately $775/student. ($700 for the airfare, conference registration, housing and most food costs in
addition to about $75 for food and incidentals). Because of size restrictions placed by the host school, it is possible
that not all students will be allowed to travel to the conference. Selection is made based on student grades, with
special emphasis on strength of participation and commitment to quality.