Students learn by doing in most SIA classes

One of the key benefits of SIA classes is experiential learning. students learn by doing. For example, students in The Politics of the Maintenance of International Peace and Security students conduct a simulated meeting of the U.N. Security Council. "Each student each represented a member country of the council and debated a resolution to the council on a dispute between Iran and the United Arab Emirates," said former Ambassador Richard Butler, Penn State's Distinguished Scholar of International Peace and Security.

The experiential curriculum spans most SIA courses and draws on the faculty that includes former ambassadors, an admiral, National Security Council staff, a senior official of both the African Union and the United Nations, economic development agency director, members of the FBI and CIA, State Department Senior Counselor, US Geological Survey Chief Scientist, government minister, and a UN international disarmament chairman, as well as international law and arbitration experts and top scholars who contribute to the public discourse. The curriculum prepares students for their careers in international affairs by having them participate in hands-on activities like simulations, briefings, negotiations, and trials, while at the same time grounding them in the fundamentals of international relations.