IR6010 - War Games- Negotiating Security through Simulations

What will I learn on this module?

‘War Games’ is a module aimed at training students in negotiation techniques through the usage of simulation games. The module has general and specific objectives. At the general level, it aims to provide students with key skills in international negotiations, applied to international organisations’ decision making (including the European Union and the United Nations). It also aims at providing students with a greater knowledge of international organisations’ policies and politics. The last general objective is to allow students to experience negotiation processes through real feel simulations, which will underline the challenges associated with international diplomacy and decision-making. Where the specific objectives are concerned, this module is very much focused on employability and on developing students’ skills for the challenges to the job market. War Games is directly linked to the students’ learning journey through the International Relations and Politics degree and rests on the shoulders of the ‘Global Governance’ and ‘International Conflict and Cooperation’ modules.

How will I learn on this module?

This module is very interactive in its nature. You will learn through lectures, interactive seminars, and independent learning. The sessions will give students the basic tools to proceed with their work later on during the semester and the simulation exercises. Private study is introduced in order to support students’ work and help in the individual preparation to the assignments. You will be encouraged to explore the selected topics more in-depth, and to perfect your negotiations skills, public speaking, and networking.
Each simulation session will be concluded by a debriefing session where we will reflect on the experience of the simulation, namely on the objectives that students managed to realise and voice, the objectives that they did not manage to achieve, the obstacles that prevented achievement, and what they would improve upon. Your learning will also be supported by the electronic learning platform (eLP) Blackboard Ultra and electronic reading lists. You will receive formative feedback during lectures and seminars, and also summative feedback that will assist you in improving future work in response to your assignment.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

Given the dynamic nature of this module and its heavy reliance on simulations, the feedback provided to students reflects the different activities included in class, namely personal research on assigned role and capacity to negotiate. On this basis, the lecturers will offer electronic feedback on the submitted written work. The Turnitin system will ensure that the feedback is readily available and that the delivery method is uniform across all students. Feedback will also be offered orally in relation to simulation performance, both by the lecturers and by fellow students. In addition, you will have access to the e-learning portal with a dedicated internet site to support this module. The site will include electronic copies of module and lecture materials, further reading materials, important module announcements, tutor advice/ guidance and further internet links. Tutorial time will be available to all students (on 1 to 1 basis) during staff ‘office hours’ or upon appointment with a module tutor. These tutorials will help you advance your learning on a one-to-one basis by supporting both your learning of skills and the development of your specific interests in the subject.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at:
(Reading List service online guide for academic staff this containing contact details for the Reading List team –

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:
• Critically analyse the context within which political leaders identify, assess and manage risk and develop policy to address risk
• Evaluate the role of international and national institutions in the development and implementation of security-related strategies & policies

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:
• Prepare and practice the negotiation skills necessary to participate in decision-making simulations (diplomatic and negotiation skills, including capacity to construct reasoned arguments, in a multi- national context);
• Gathering, organisation and deployment of substantial and complex information and evidence, through autonomous research, on international organisations and policies.

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
• Appreciate the diversity in negotiation and diplomatic practices in different regions

How will I be assessed?

Group assessment (50% of the final grade)
1- A position paper of an assigned actor (750 words) 25% of the grade for this assessment
2- A strategy paper (750 words) 25% of the grade for this assessment
3- Negotiation simulation (2 hour exercise) 50% of the grade for this assessment

Individual assessment (50% of the final grade)
1- Reflection diary on the development of position and strategy papers and on the simulation performance (1,500 words).





Module abstract

War Games is a cutting-edge module where students learn the art of negotiation and diplomacy through simulations. Throughout the semester, students experience what it is like to play a world leader with the capacity to change the lives of countless people. By analysing the role of international negotiations and their interactions at the negotiation table and by creating negotiation strategies and implementing them, students acquire an invaluable skills’ set for their professional future. This module is an incredible experience where you get intensely immersed in a broad theatre that seems so real that when it finally comes to an end, it results in a greater awareness of decision-making and diplomatic challenges and a huge sense of shared achievement.

Course info

UCAS Code L2L2

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years full-time or 4 years with a placement (sandwich)/study abroad

Department Social Sciences

Location City Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Start September 2024 or September 2025

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


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