857-400-9525 [email protected]

The Importance of Note Passing in Model UN

Written by Faiza Ahmed

January 10, 2022

The Importance of Note Passing in Model UN

The Smaller the Paper, the Mightier the Note

Note passing is an underrated tactic that delegates use to create a continuous line of communication. It allows them to learn about different countries’ stances and saves time in moderated and unmoderated caucuses to discuss more concrete solutions. Note passing gives creative freedom for the writer on whom they correspond with and how many notes they pass around. It is also an alternative outlet for those scared to talk in front of a caucus. Delegates can still heavily influence debate and their respective blocs by writing down ideas and engaging support. 

The Art of Secrecy

Depending on which committee a delegate is a part of, note-passing skills can determine a delegate’s award. Within crises, notes between the backroom form the basis of an arc. Delegates can launch surprise attacks against others or form secret alliances. Notes have a hidden element that is pivotal when leading in debate. Looking at Specialized and GA committees, notes help differentiate the leaders of a paper. A delegate who consistently passes notes regarding meet-ups or breakdown of clauses becomes the facilitator. Notes are efficient when discussing technical details with bloc members.

Within a small piece of paper, there could be an alliance built, a solution outlined, or a mere conversation written; no one will know due to its secrecy.

How to Write a Good Note

A note should be simple and not overshadowed by confusing jargon. Providing a greeting with your name will extend a sign of friendliness to a delegate you recently met. Getting to know one another on a first-name basis will separate a person from the country they represent. Note passing also emphasizes penmanship, which is inevitably useless if a delegate cannot read the note itself. Putting in the extra effort and making sure you are using your best handwriting will ensure ease for all parties. If you’re someone whose handwriting is illegible, consider writing in all capital letters; anything that helps people understand your notes better is positive. Finding a balance between writing notes and staying active within the committee can be difficult, hence why you should limit the word count for your notes. A summary behind your goals is sufficient and creates a segway to future discussions during unmods, ensuring your solutions don’t get leaked to the entire body. Adding excessive information can jeopardize the informal discussion you began and your attention to the flow of the committee. 

Note passing challenges a delegate’s ability to multitask but displays a true leader within a debate. They easily stimulate multiple conversations and save time when forming blocs. Depending on the criteria of a committee, notes can add an element of surprise and make the debate more enjoyable!


You May Also Like…

Program Director Application

Program Director Application

Job Description All-American Model United Nations is looking for an experienced, student-focused Program Director to...


Join the new Model UN Coach platform for free!

Create a free account on our new Model UN teaching and community platform.

You have Successfully Subscribed!