News and Information
school students participating in a simulated Arab-Israeli conflict
are learning the complexities of national and international politics
in an ongoing program at the U-M School of Educations Interactive
Communications and Simulations (ICS) program.
The program, which traces its roots to 1975, sponsors several
multi-week character-playing exercises. The Arab-Israeli Conflict/Middle
East Simulation (AIC), one of several Web-based simulations, encompasses
16 three-character high school teams.
Participating teams represent high-level, current and contemporary
governmental and political figures. States and political organizations
involved in the conflict are represented, including the United States
and other United Nations Security Council members. Each participating
school is assigned a pair of trained University mentors who, under
the direction of the project directors, provide updates and team
guidance. Students are enrolled in classes on government, current
issues, social studies, journalism or the Arab-Israeli conflict.
During the simulations, participants are involved in four activity
types: discussing strategies and tactics with their teammates; sending
and receiving private diplomatic messages; posting press releases
visible to all teams; and submitting action forms, which represent
physical events. Mentors moderate press releases and action forms.
Schools involved in the ICS program span the nation from Washington
to Massachusetts. International participants include students in
Australia, Brazil, Canada, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea,
Taiwan and the United Kingdom. While most players are high school
students, middle school and college students participate in the
program as well.
ICS is about getting people from diverse backgrounds and
experiences to talk about the things that matter most, says
Gary Weisserman, School of Education professor and ICS director.
We use Internet technologies to accomplish those goals, but
the social technology is where the real power lies.
More information about ICS simulations is available at
or by contacting program directors Gary Weisserman (firstname.lastname@example.org),,
Jeff Kupperman (email@example.com)
or Edgar Taylor (firstname.lastname@example.org)
at (734) 764-5547.