Special Topics in International Relations: Conflict Resolution Strategies

Discipline: Politics and International Relations
Instructor: Jackson
Credits: 3

Field Class: Belize Download Syllabus

Research has firmly established that conflict resolution must play a vital part in the realization of the Millennium Development Goals. Thus, sound conflict management skills have become an important attribute of tomorrow’s global leaders (Wang, 2009). This seminar-style, interdisciplinary course well meet this need. It not only teaches students the concept of, sources of and responses to international conflict, but also familiarizes them with different methods of conflict management in the international arena. It brings practical and experimental learning through exercises, simulations, role-play, case studies, discussions, guest lectures and documentary films. The class will examine various types of international conflicts from different regions of the world. Learning by doing is the theme of the class activities. International conflict management skills will be enhanced as the course develops. In addition, several major issues will be examined in-depth.

Field Class

Country: Belize

Our field lab experience is entitled "Documenting Peace," in which we will visit St. John’s Anglican Primary School in Belize City. Our project there consists of three parts: First, we will engage the children in their vision of the word "Peace." One group of SASers will act as scribes to document the children’s individual stories/words/examples; A second group will act as photographers to capture the images as the process unfolds; group three will help the children illustrate the "Peace" concept through artistic renderings (coloring, basic water paints, cut and pasting, a wall mural--whatever small art supply each of us can bring in a backpack for the children). All of the day’s work will be digitally compiled into a small book (via Shutterfly) and/or a scrapbook to be gifted to the school (and if monies allow--to each child who participated). We look to proliferate discourse and to generate excitement around activities relative to "peace" in hopes that our collaborative creative artifact will continue to reinforce a new paradigm.