Rules of Procedure
- ‘The Rules’ refer to the Rules of Procedure for the Diplomacy Competition.
- ‘The Competition’ refers to the Diplomacy Competition.
- ‘Participants’ and ‘Teams’ refer to the secondary students taking part in the Competition.
- The Competition will be divided into four ‘Rounds’ staged throughout the year.
- For practical purposes, Teams entered into the Competition will be divided into ‘Pools’.
2. PHASE ZERO: REGISTRATION
Registrations will be taken via an online form released around when Term One starts. The Competition will take registrations throughout the year, but it is advised to register at the beginning of the year before the first Round.
Registration will involve providing us with the names and email addresses of all team members and the teacher liaison. Note that the Competition Officers reserve the right to edit team names if they are inappropriate or too long. After registrations close for a particular Round, each team member will be provided with a username and password for the competition.
A teacher liaison is the Diplomacy Competition’s designated contact at a particular school. Details of teacher liaisons will be collected via the registrations. It is optional, but recommended, to put forward a teacher liaison.
Teams are to be comprised of 3 – 4 high school students (Years 9 – 13).
- A team comprising of students in Years 9 – 11 must register for the Junior Division for prize allocations.
- A team comprising of students in Years 12 – 13 must register for the Senior Division for prize allocations.
- A mixed team comprising of students from both Years 9 – 11 and Years 12 – 13 must register for the Senior Division for prize allocations.
Independent teams, comprising of students from multiple schools, are permitted. Participants are not encouraged to form independent teams if there is adequate interest from students at their school.
At the beginning of each Round, your team will be assigned a country. The lengths of each Round and its Phases will be announced and confirmed before the start of the respective Round.
Participants should use the window of time between the confirmation of their registration and the start of Round One to familiarise themselves with the Competition website and the various Participant resources that have been produced.
3. PHASE ONE: RESEARCHING
Upon the start of Phase One, each Team will be provided with a Resolution and Briefing Paper on a given topic, with the topic having been announced in advance. Teams are expected to research their country’s position and begin thinking of possible amendments. This is time that can also be productively spent becoming aware of the positions of other delegations and beginning to work with them.
Competition Officers also reserve the right to move teams in order to balance Pools.
4. PHASE TWO: NEGOTIATING AND AMENDMENTS
Upon the start of Phase Two, each Team will now be permitted to submit amendments on the resolution making it more favourable to their particular stance. They will also be able to discuss objectives and amendment specifics with other teams via the Forum. At the end of this phase, voting on all amendments will take place.
Please note that facilitators will be screening all comments on the Forum and inappropriate or offensive comments will be edited or deleted.
To prepare for Phase Two, Participants are advised to have a look at the Guide to Negotiation found on the Competition website.
5. PHASE THREE: WRITING
Teams are required to research and produce a Position Paper on the resolution as it now stands. To do so effectively the Position Paper must be:
- Analysing of the operative clauses of the Resolution provided,
- Outlining amendments that your assigned country has seen as relevant, AND how these affected your voting stance on the overall resolution,
- Clearly expressing your assigned country’s stance on the resolution as it stands, and
- Being no longer than 500 words.
The Position Paper is to be uploaded onto the Competition website before the end of Phase Three. Late submissions will not be accepted. The Competition Officers reserve the right to remove teams from Rounds if they do not submit a Position Paper.
To prepare for Phase Three, Participants are advised to use the Position Paper Template and have a look at the Guide to Position Papers found on the Competition website.
6. PHASE FOUR: MARKING AND VOTING
Upon the start of Phase Four, Teams will be allowed to view the Position Papers of other Teams in their Pool. Each Team will be expected to mark the other Position Papers within their Pool using the marking schedule that we have developed. Please note that Teams that do not mark all the other Papers in their Pool may be ineligible to qualify for a prize.
Teams will be able to provide feedback comments along with their assigned marks. Similarly to discussions during Phase Two, Moderators will screen feedback comments and any inappropriate or offensive comments will be edited or deleted.
Further to this, external markers will also assess each Position Paper. The points that will eventually be allocated to each Team for their Position Paper will be calculated in accordance with the following break-down of percentages:
- 70% - External marking
- 30% - Peer marking
- Bonus marks for community interaction
To prepare for Phase Four, Participants are advised to use the Guide to Peer Marking to learn how to mark the Position Papers.
Additionally, Phase Four involves all Teams voting on the Resolution as it stands.
7. FINAL PHASE: RESULTS ANNOUNCEMENT
After external marking, the results of the vote on the Resolution will be announced and the leaderboard will be updated with the Competition results. Each Team will receive some brief overall feedback as well as be notified of the amount of points that they have scored for that Round.
The winner of each Round is the team with the most points. The team in each Division with the most combined points after all four Rounds will be the overall winners of the Diplomacy Competition. The head external marker, typically the Content Officer, will decide a tied result.
A prize list will be announced prior to Round One. The winning team in each Division for each Round will receive a prize, as well as the overall winners. There is a dedicated ‘Competition Prizes’ page on the website that lists all prizes, as well as the winning teams for each Round, as they are announced.
The Competition Officers reserve the right to ask for proof of enrolment and year level before awarding prizes.
Every Participant will have a login, but for the purposes of the Competition all accounts in a Team will appear the same to other competitors. For example, a comment made by any member of your Team will simply be posted under the name of your assigned country. As such, the individual Participants of each Team are expected to communicate and coordinate with each other outside of the platform of the Competition website.
The Competition Officers will communicate with Teams and Participants primarily through emails to teacher liaisons and Participants. Some important announcements may also be made on the homepage of the Competition website.
10. COMPETITION OFFICER CONTACT DETAILS (2016)
- Competition Coordinator: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Teams Officer: email@example.com
- Tech Officer: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Promotions Officer: email@example.com
- Content Officer: firstname.lastname@example.org
Any general enquiries may also be sent to email@example.com.