Spring 2014 Model Arab League Syllabus

**Click here for the Alumni Throwdown Topic Guide


Model Arab League

Spring, 2014

Tuesday: 6:00pm – 8:30pm Shillman 305

Professor Philip D’Agati


Office: 347 Meserve Hall

Office Hours: TBA



The purpose of this course is two-fold.  First, it is to familiarize the student with the League of Arab States, its governing bodies, and its role in the International Community and in Arab Affairs.  Second, is to prepare the student to participate in a diplomatic simulation of the politics of the Arab World at two – four conference simulations during the semester.  Preparation involves the student learning about countries they will represent during the conference, learning about and synthesizing that country’s policy on specific topics, and learning how to be the most effective delegate in a room with students representing 22+ Arab states.



• You must be available to attend the entire Boston Model Arab League (BMAL) summit and the entire Arab Joint Cabinet Crisis (A-JCC). If you have the opportunity to attend one of the off-campus conferences, you must be available for the entire trip.

SERMAL*: March 14 – 16, 2014 in Spartanburg, SC

BMAL/A-JCC:  Saturday April 6, 2014 in Boston, MA

NUMAL**:  March 28 – 30, 2014; Washington D.C.

(These are University sponsored events.  We will be able to provide appropriate documentation to inform your professors/co-op bosses/etc. of your absence)

*Southeast Regional Model Arab League

** National University Model Arab League


Required Readings:

-       Reading Packet purchasable in the Bookstore.

-       Your Head Delegate(s) may provide you with information/readings each week.  These are in addition to reading assignments on the syllabus and are mandatory.


  1. Morganthau. “Diplomacy” In. Politics Among Nations
  2. Morganthau. “The Future of Diplomacy.”  In. Politics Among Nations
  3. Axelrod.  “How to Promote Cooperation.” In Evolution of Cooperation.
  4. Keohane. “Cooperation & International Regimes.” In After Hegemony
  5. Schelling“An Essay on Bargaining.”  In The Strategy of Conflict.
  6. Mintz & De Rouen. “International Domestic, and Cultural Factors Influencing Foreign Policy Decision Making” In Understanding Foreign Policy Decision Making.


There are two fees for the course:

Lab Fee*: $50.00, Due January 21, 2014

  • Fees will be accepted late, but in order to cover costs associated with late fees, the fee will be increased $5 per week that it is late.

Travel Fee**: $185.00, Due February 11, 2014

*Everybody pays this fee. Any student that does not pay the fee will be disallowed

participation in conferences, at the discretion of the Instructor.  Any student that

does not pay the fee may receive an Incomplete or Failing grade, also at the

discretion of the Instructor.

** Only those selected to travel pay this fee. In total, a student traveling with the

program pays a combined fee of $225.00

(Fee exemption is available for students exempt from other course lab fees. Exemption is ultimately at the discretion of the Instructor.)



Travel Conferences (If Applicable) and BMAL Summit*: 50%

Class Simulation Performance**: 20%

Class Participation & Attendance***: 30%

*All students are also required to attend BMAL.  Lastly, those students selected for travel are required to fulfill all requirements of participation in their assigned Conference.

** All students are required to participate in the weekly simulation during class sessions.

*** Active participation includes demonstrating that readings, research, and other expected preparation is done by the student.



During the “simulation” portion of class, students are permitted to use their laptops.

Inappropriate use of computers during class may result in the revocation of this privilege.


Conference Participation

In order to earn full credit for conference participation, students will be expected to:

  1. Attend ALL Head Delegate sessions prior to the Conference,
  2. Attend ALL sessions of the Conference,
  3. Actively participate and contribute to the debate,
  4. Adhere to University and IRC policies while at conference, and
  5. Hand in all paperwork required by the Conference, Professor, or the Head Delegate.


Attendance and Participation Policies

• Attendance at weekly class sessions is mandatory.

• Participation is defined as regular and meaningful contribution to class discussions and debates.

• Attendance at all conference sessions is required. Attendance at all conference events is required unless the professor approves a request for absence.

• Attendance at all other meetings, practices, and similar events is expected. Any necessary absence should be discussed with the professor and head delegate in advance.


Academic Honesty/Integrity & Conference Etiquette

The Department of Political Science takes the issue of academic honesty very seriously. For this course, a significant portion of your work will be representing the ideas/positions of others.  You will also be working towards goals as a team.  As such, it is understood that a significant portion of your work will involve synthesizing the best ideas/goals of your team and of your assigned government (SERMAL and NUMAL assignment).   Plagiarism of any kind outside of the formal position of your state will not be tolerated at any time and may result in an F for any part of or the entire course.   The Policy Briefings are considered a formal research paper and as such should be undertaken with care to cite all necessary information and hold to the strictest tenets of Academic Honesty. Policy Briefings are similar to Topic Guides, with which you may be familiar. Formatting, content and deadlines will be determined and assigned by your respective Head Delegate.

During the course, information on Conference Rules, the College’s Code of Student Conduct, and other matters pertaining to your actions at conference will be discussed.  You are expected to hold to all of these.  As the team’s advisor, I hold the sole discretion to dismiss any member of the team from the conference.  A dismissal from the conference may result in the lowering of your grade, or an F.  Lastly, significant behavioral matters that would result in breach of the College’s Code of Student Conduct will be handled according to the Constitution of International Relations Council and the policies of the Office of Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution.


Conference Selection

BMAL Summit & A-JCC & Alumni Throwdown

  • Every student enrolled in the class and who pays the $40 fee is guaranteed a spot

at the BMAL/A-JCC Conference.

  • Every student traveling to NATO is required to attend the Alumni Throwdown.
  • Attendance at any conference can be revoked, at the discretion of the Professor.



  • Every student attending SERMAL and/or NUMAL is required to attend BMAL/A-JCC.
  • There will be three Tryouts for the traveling teams and a Court Tryout
  • Unless significant reason for absence is presented to the Advisor, students are required to attend all sessions of the tryout.
  • The procedure used by the IRC for conference selection is delineated in the IRC Constitution, copies of which will be made available upon request.
  • Participation in SERMAL and NUMAL is a privilege.


Class and Conference Schedule:

Tuesdays 6-8:30 pm

January 7, 2014

  • Course/Program Introduction
  • Rules of Procedure
  • Icebreaker Simulation I

January 14, 2014

  • Resolution Writing Rules and Tips
  • Information Session I: Examining the role of the Arab League in facilitating political resolutions to internal state violence and instability, with emphasis on the lessons learned during the Arab Spring.
  • Morganthau I&II Readings

 January 21, 2014

  • Topic I Debate Session I

 January 28, 2014

  • Topic I Debate Session II

February 1, 2014

  • Model Arab League Tryouts

 February 4, 2014

  • Topic I Debate Session III

February 8, 2014

  • Model Arab League Tryouts

February 11, 2014

  • Information Session II: Updating the 1981 Agreement to Facilitate and Develop Trade Among Arab Countries and the 1997 Greater Arab Free Trade Area Agreement, with an eye towards the successes and failures of those agreements.
  • Koehane Readings

 February 18, 2014

  • Topic II Debate Session I

 February 25, 2014

  • Topic II Debate Session II

March 4, 2014

  • Spring Break: No Classes

 March 11, 2014

  • Topic II Debate Session III
  • Southeast Model Arab League

March 14-16, 2014

  • Southeast Model Arab League

March 18, 2014

  • Information Session III: Examining the rights and protections of migrant and foreign laborers in the Arab World and how to improve their legal and social situation.
  • Schelling, Mintz & De Rouen Readings

 March 25, 2014

  • Topic III Debate Session I

March 28-30, 2014

  • National Model Arab League

 April 1, 2014

  • Topic III Debate Session II

April 8, 2014

  • Topic III Debate Session III

April 5-6, 2014

  • Boston Model Arab League

April 15, 2014

  • Course Wrap Up
  • End of year Celebration


Travel Teams Preparatory Schedule

8:30pm – 9:00pm

January 7, 2014

  • NATO Team meets

January 14, 2014

  • NATO Team meets

January 21, 2014

  • NATO Team meets

January 28, 2014

  • NATO Team meets

February 3, 2014

  • SERMAL & NUMAL Teams meet

February 10, 2014

  • NATO Team meets

February 17, 2014

  • SERMAL & NUMAL Teams meet

February 24, 2014

  • SERMAL & NUMAL Teams meet

March 4, 2014

  • Spring Break: No Classes

March 11, 2014

  • SERMAL Team meets

March 18, 2014

  • SERMAL & NUMAL Teams meet

March 25, 2014

  • NUMAL Team meets

April 1, 2014

  • A-JCC Cabinets meet

April 8, 2014

  • No Meetings

April 15, 2014

  • No Meetings

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