Tips for Preparation
Tips for Preparation
Like any activity or sport, Model UN takes practice and skill. We hope that you will have the opportunity to improve your Model UN skills both before and during your committee at HMUN. If this is your first conference, not to worry! Many of our delegates are first timers to Model UN and this webpage and your study guide are your first resources to build the skills necessary to prepare and debate effectively. During conference, you will have the opportunity to take part in specialized delegate trainings based on your skill. During committee, your committee director is trained to answer any questions you may have. Please do not hesitate to ask any of the committee dais staff or Secretariat about any questions about procedure, your topic area, or about Harvard life. Committee director e-mails are listed on their respective committee page.
Students should spend time researching the two topic areas their committees will be considering. Once background guides become available in October, the study guide will provide an extensive background and overview of both topic areas to be discussed. The background (or study) guide should be your first stop for committee information as the Director of the committee has compiled, organized, and presented all information that he or she expects the committee to discuss. Take note of the “Questions A Resolution Must Answer,” helpful guiding questions of the committee and questions that are expected to be answered in the final resolution. All of our study guides also include a bibliographic essay as a starting point for additional student research.
Delegates should learn as much as possible about the country they will be representing – both in general and in relation to the topics they will be discussing. While our study guides include an analysis of bloc positions on topic areas, students should also learn about the specific positions of their respective nations.
General HMUN Preparation
Students should familiarize themselves with the rules of formal debate, parliamentary procedure, and the proper format for a resolution. Our training materials, available once background guides are posted, help both experienced and first-time delegates learn about the goals, accomplishments, limits, and powers of the UN and the international system.
Thorough preparation is essential to making HMUN an excellent educational experience. Pre-conference research makes committee more fun and rewarding, as delegates can then immerse themselves in their roles as high-ranking diplomats.
Delegates will be required to submit position papers on their topic areas prior to the conference. General position paper requirements for HMUN will be listed in the study guide as well as preparation materials posted once study guides are available. Specialized Agencies committees will often submit position papers in a different, specialized format from those of the GA, ECOSOC, or Regional Bodies. Please refer to the Position Paper guidelines listed in each background guide for specific information. The conference-wide position paper deadline is January 15, 2014, uploaded via MUNbase.
Click here for a SAMPLE position paper - additional materials are available in the Guide to Delegate Preparation