Broadening the Reach of International Simulations to Overcome Accessibility Barriers

Hemda Ben-Yehuda

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


World politics simulations are gaining popularity and becoming mainstream. With advanced technological tools, experimental learning brings together students from afar increasing the multicultural nature of meetings and practical learning. Progress in running simulations and pedagogical goal fulfillment still require the removal of accessibility barriers, to make our educational environment more equal, universally across the globe. This study addresses four barrier types, describes improvement in the legal setting over the years and points to still unmet challenges preventing an equitable learning experience for all students regardless of background, race, religion, or ability. Components from the Universal Design for Learning (UDL)—Action and Expression, Engagement, and Representation—serve as pedagogical guidelines, applied in the Syrian Civil War Simulation (SCWS) to illustrate how gradually progressing role play can overcome some if not all barriers. Some barriers are technical-procedural, so addressing them necessitates awareness and application of easily available modifications. Others are deeply embedded, making their removal harder and more costly. In conclusion, the study highlights practical ways to overcome barriers, emphasizing the role of networking as a way to identify problems, learn about available solutions, share the costs of implementing changes, and make simulation projects attractive to all students.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)237-254
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of Political Science Education
Issue numberS1
StatePublished - 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


  • Simulations
  • Syrian civil war
  • accessibility barriers
  • disabilities
  • innovative learning
  • networking
  • technology


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