Below is a general guide to help student delegates prepare for TCMUN.
Learn the TCMUN Rules and Expectations:
- Rules of Procedure (short form and long form). It is expected of student delegates to learn Model UN Rules and to learn to use diplomatic language during TCMUN
- TCMUN Delegate Expectations
- TCMUN Delegate Code of Conduct
Learn the basics about your country and the UN, including:
- geography and culture (climate, terrain, religious and ethnic groups, official language/s, etc.)
- type of political system, current leadership, and recent political issues (elections, ethnic conflict, civil wars, human rights record, environmental issues, etc.)
- economic and social conditions (major industries, standard of living, national debt, size of population, infant mortality, literacy, etc.)
- foreign affairs (alliances, membership in international organizations, military capabilities, amount and type of international trade, recipient or donor of international aid, etc.)
Websites to aid in UN and country research:
- Wikipedia online encyclopedia: www.wikipedia.com
- CIA world factbook: https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/index.html(which is particularly helpful when looking at Int’l Disputes and often lists things such as trafficking and refugees), their Int’l Organizations Participation and their import/export partners)
- Basic UN Background info: http://www.un.org/aboutun/
- Index to speeches unbisnet.un.org (here you can search speeches by topic, country and committee) OR you can go to “voting record”
- UN Cyberschool Bus www.cyberschoolbus.un.org (click on “model UN headquarters,” “preparation,” “research tips”)
Delegates from TCMUN ’10 during an un-moderated caucus
Research the Topics on Your Committee’s Agenda
It is very important to research your country’s position on the topics you will be discussing in your committee. This will enable you to write an accurate position paper and draft resolutions that your country would actually support. Excellent sources include:
- the website of your country’s foreign ministry
- the website of your country’s permanent mission at the United Nations in New York
- the background guide for your committee
- “Voting Practices in the United Nations,” a US State Department website with detailed information on country’s voting records, http://www.state.gov/p/io/rls/rpt/
If your country’s position is unclear, or you are unable to find information on its stance on a particular subject, try to deduce your country’s position from what you know about the topic and what you know about your country. Knowing your country’s position is an essential part of representing your country in formal speeches, when forming alliances, and in sponsoring and voting on resolutions.
Know Your Allies
In both the UN and Model UN, it is vital to know your allies. This allows you to form groups to co-sponsor resolutions, negotiate as a team, and vote as a bloc. Often countries from the same region vote as a bloc. Other times, voting is more issue-specific. So, as you research your country, the UN, and the topics before your committee, think about which countries are like yours (culturally, economically, politically, and otherwise), and make a note of any alliances and other forms of cooperation you discover. For information on some UN blocs, go to http://cyberschoolbus.un.org/infonation3/glossary.html
Write Your Position Paper
Use our helpful Position Paper Writing Guide for Students to get started on you paper.
Current Periodicals and Other Information Sources
Remember that it’s always best to consult several sources. Reliable US newspapers include the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times and the Wall Street Journal. The journals Foreign Affairs and Foreign Policy are also excellent.
International sources include the Economist, the Guardian (London), Le Monde, (Paris), and ITAR-TASS (a Russian news source). Worldpress.org is another excellent source; it digests international news from media sources around the world.
Radio sources include National Public Radio programs such as “Morning Edition,” “BBC World Service,” and “All Things Considered.” TV sources include PBS and news shows such as “The News Hour,” “BBC World,” “Charlie Rose,” “NOW,” and “Frontline.” We especially like “Foreign Exchange” because the guests are international policy makers, journalists, and scholars. The ABC, CBS, and NBC evening news, as well as ABC’s “Nightline,” can also be helpful.
Other UN Resources
- UN Research Guide: http://research.un.org/
- Yale’s UN Scholar “workstation:” http://www.library.yale.edu/un/
Model UN Prep Guide
- United Nations Associate of the US, Model UN prep guide: http://www.unausa.org/site/pp.asp?c=fvKRI8MPJpF&b=457131
Additional Resources and Tips
- Tricks of the Trade–Nuances, Tactics and Strategies for Model UN
- On October 12, the World Economic Forum released the Global Gender Gap Report 2010, which ranks member states by their gender equality. Click here for more information and to read the report.
*The information on this page was provided by Montana Model UN. It was written by Katie Peers and Karen Ruth Adams and adapted for TCMUN by Evan Huggins. Copyright 2013 by Karen Ruth Adams.