While the effects of simulation based courses on the knowledge of participating students may be marginal in relation to standard lecture and discussion-based courses, this paper argues that the greatest leverage is gained by increasing participating students’ level of interest in the subject of study and in politics more broadly. Participants tend to become increasingly absorbed in their roles and in the politics of the institutions at the center of the simulation. To better consider this possibility, we conduct a survey of students participating in the 2015 Mid-Atlantic European Union Simulation and of appropriate control populations. The survey results indeed suggest that, much more than simply acquiring knowledge about the EU, the simulation experience serves to generate more robust interest in the subject of study.
” EU Simulations and Engagement: Motivating Greater Interest in European Union Politics” with Gretchen Van Dyke, Peter Loedel, John Scherpereel, and Andreas Sobisch at the “Effects of simulations of decision-making in EU studies: enhancing motivation, interest and performance” Conference, Antwerp, Belgium, January 8-9, 2016.