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Student Instructor

Grading and Rubrics


Sections 1 and 2 have assessments—a series of short-answer questions that check students’ understanding of each section. These assessments can be enabled or disabled when you create the simulation, or by going to the simulation manager.

If you choose to enable assessments, you will get notifications whenever a student submits his or her answers, and you will be able to view your students’ responses and easily give them feedback within the Model Diplomacy website.

Writing Assignments

Model Diplomacy involves writing assignments that help students think through policy options and reflect on their learning experience.

In NSC cases, there are three types of writing assignments.

  • Before the role-play, everyone but the president writes a position memo.
  • After the role-play, the president writes a presidential directive.
  • As part of the wrap-up, everyone writes a policy review memo.

In UNSC cases, there are two types of writing assignments.

  • Before the role-play, everyone writes draft clauses for a Security Council resolution.
  • As part of the wrap-up, everyone writes a policy review memo.

We have written assignments, rubrics, and samples for each of these writing exercises; they can be found in Section 3 (position memo and presidential directive) and Section 4 (policy review memo). If you would like to modify the assignments or use your own rubric instead, you can let your students know using the annotation feature.

Single-point rubrics are quite effective. Jennifer Gonzalez, who writes the blog Cult of Pedagogy, has a great explainer, but the bottom line is that single-point rubrics are relatively easy for students to digest but still have all the advantages of giving structure to instructors’ feedback.

Downloadable PDFs and Word files of the rubrics are available here:

PDF rubrics:

Word rubrics:

If you plan to give a grade to your students for your Model Diplomacy simulation, you can refer to our sample weighting, below, as a starting point. Of course, the breakdown of how you weight each of the aspects of the simulation will depend on the goals for your class and any customizations you have made.

Assignment Weight
Council guide assessment 5%
Case content assessment 5%
Policy memo (NSC case) or draft clauses (UNSC case)
(for the president in an NSC case, either grade the presidential directive instead or use a different weighting.)
Participation in role-play 25%
Participation in wrap-up discussion 10%
Policy review memo 25%