A consortium of researchers dedicated to improving the understanding of the human causes and consequences of terrorism

ICONS team announces new self-serve online simulations

START’s International Communication & Negotiation Simulations (ICONS) team has announced that a new self-serve option is now available for all of their online educational simulations.

“Instructors used to have to wait a bit after registering until our staff could create the simulation for them,” ICONS director Bob Lamb said. “From now on, instructors will have immediate access to their simulations so they can start preparing their students to participate right away.”

For 40 years, the ICONS Project has provided classrooms and organizations around the world with custom-designed simulations, wargames and exercises to help plan for unique challenges and manage crises.

The ICONS platform became particularly vital to high school instructors and university professors after the COVID-19 pandemic forced many schools to move instruction online quickly. Now, simulations are immediately available upon registration, and instructors can request a free scenario excerpt to explore the simulation of their choice.

ICONS online simulations engage students in playing the roles of stakeholders in a range of complex political and societal issues. ICONS simulations run completely online and are an excellent way to provide engaging and active learning experiences to students.

The 24 educational simulations currently available are based on real-world issues and require students to think strategically, negotiate collaboratively and make decisions about world issues including terrorism, threats to democracy, international relations and trade, comparative politics, global warming, food security, human trafficking and more.

The simulations are run online through the ICONSnet platform, which allows students to participate at any time, from different locations, and can be easily adapted to meet the needs of a variety of courses and schedules.

While the catalog of ready-to-use simulations cover topics in political science, business, communications and environmental science, instructors from any discipline may find them applicable. ICONS can also work with instructors to develop a customized simulation.

Instructors seeking online educational opportunities for their students can browse the online catalog, or reach out to the ICONS team at icons@umd.edu with questions. For more information, visit www.icons.umd.edu/education.