Introduction to Political Science

Students spend 3 weeks in the Gov Lite simulation and 5 weeks in the IR Lite simulation. They build countries from the ground up by selecting and analyzing contemporary government and economic types. They’ll draw connections between the different political philosophies associated with each one.  Students will play American government roles in the executive, legislative, and judiciary while spending each week building, executing, and experiencing the benefits and consequences of government policies. 

Instructors save an average 13% on course work when using Statecraft.


When you launch Statecraft IR, the whole class is transported to an addictive online world where students are grouped into countries and take on the roles of world leaders. The objective of the game is to gather as many points as possible and cultivate the most impressive country! 

Students both collaborate and compete to execute their country strategy and achieve the simulation goals. Throughout gameplay they must simultaneously balance both domestic and international factors to care for their citizens and navigate global crisis. 


To gather points students can pursue a myriad of strategies: from avoiding conflict for domestic wellbeing to cautiously collaborative strategies that maximize economic synergies while carefully checking other countries' imperial motives. It is possible that every country could get a perfect score and all thrive; however (just like in the real world) that rarely happens.


Each turn students try to achieve three types of goals: (1) Cooperative Global Goals that are shared with the entire world such as ending world hunger; (2) Competitive Country Goals for excelling in a certain area such as “Most Environmentally Friendly” or “Safest” and finally (3) Country Development Goals based on domestic factors such as citizens' health, welfare, environment, safety and education.

Domestic Factors

Every turn countries will produce resources students must decide how to invest; they’ll bump up against the classic “guns vs. butter” conundrum. They’ll also get a Quality of Life score that equates to points for their citizens' health, welfare, environment, safety and education. Unhappy citizens engage in costly strikes and demonstrations! Unhealthy citizens die of famine!

International Factors

There are pirates terrorizing the world! Ice Mountain is melting and threatening to flood the entire globe! Should they participate in the U.N.? What about that crazy country over there trying to build a nuclear weapon? Both simulation events and classmates create drama and excitement and demonstrate how intertwined the world truly is.

Statecraft IR creates situations where students are experiencing course concepts on a personal level and must apply the lessons they’ve learned in class to succeed. Along the way they’ll have questions about situations in the simulation like the security dilemma or the collective action problem that will become prime teachable moments.

Statecraft empowers you to transform your class into an immersive, unforgettable learning experience you’ll enjoy just as much as your students. 

effective, fun & helpful

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Demonstrate Course Concepts

Students experience important IR concepts such as security dilemmas and collective action problems first-hand and personally feel how complicated leadership truly is. In order to succeed in the simulation, they’ll have to apply course-related knowledge. 

Engaged students playing Statecraft Simulations

Engage Students

Game-like play sucks students into the simulations where they must take ownership of their learning experience. They’re empowered to excel to their own personal limits and shine. Engagement enhances the knowledge acquisition process and makes it fun!

Statecraft IR World Map on Comp Screen

Save Time

The simulation is easy to set up and runs itself. You have a new tool to draw connections to course concepts and spark dynamic conversations. All-unique simulation scenarios every semester promote academic honesty. Instructor tools do tasks like grading for you. 

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use statecraft 100% ONLINE OR IN-PERSON

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Easily create an unforgettable, dynamic online class

This is a great choice for you if you’ve recently moved a class online and need an easy, effective way to spark student interest, create engagement and foster participation. It’s also a great choice if you’re unsure of what your class format will be next semester: these simulations will easily transition with you whether your class is 100% online, in-person or a blend. 

Student map interface

The Statecraft World Map is where all of the action happens! Students can log in via a desktop computer or a mobile device. The map illustrates the geographical layout of the world showing resource centers, deserts and mountains as well as the climate situation. The colored lines delineate territory zones belonging to each country. The icons mark cities, military units, landmarks and terrorist occupations. Once a student spies on a foreign country those cities and military units will also be exposed. Clicking on the icons reveals more information and there’s a detailed legend key to offer extra map guidance. 

In the nav bars at the top students can access all of the critical information for their world as well as look at their intelligence data for other countries. They’ll be able to access their Diplomacy, Military, Intelligence, Domestic and Research activities as well as manage their Resources. 




Statecraft IR World Map on a Mobile Phone



Resources Bar

Time-Saving Instructor Tools

Foreign Policy Attitude Test

Student Assignments

Statecraft automatically assigns students to roles based on a brief attitude test  designed for optimum role fit and student collaboration during the initial signup process.

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Automated Student Prompting, Feedback & Calculations

Professors report an average of 13% time savings by using simulation tools that automatically prompt students, issue feedback, and guide outcomes.

Automated Grading in Statecraft IR

Automated Grading

The Statecraft system tracks all choices and outcomes and automatically reports final grades to the instructor in an excel exportable format for your convenience. 

how Statecraft ir works

Easy Set-up & Launch

Statecraft IR Sim Sign Up Screen

An immersive digital world commences

Once the simulation launches, students meet as a country and their first action is to choose a country name, city names, and positions for each student. They also select a government type and two attributes which will bestow special country abilities and constraints. Students’ initial decisions about their country type and attributes are the foundation for their strategy and affect the way they’ll be able to operate in the simulation. 

Every regime type has bonuses and drawbacks. For example, in a democratic regime the country’s embrace of freedom yields educational and scientific benefits and makes the population happier. The downside is increased crime, a coarser culture, and limits to rapid military mobilization.

Regime type and country attributes factor into the country’s Quality of Life scores each turn, which significantly impacts points earned. That means dedicating resources to building up the country’s health, welfare, education, and other domestic ratings is a critical part of overall success in the simulation. Leaders must keep their people happy and healthy!  

Student Positions

Regime types

Screenshot showing the constraints when students choose the “Constitutional Monarchy” regime: 

Defend the Queen Screenshot

Country attributes

Screenshot of “Scientific” attribute bonuses: 

Big Brain Divided Screenshot
Statecraft Students

Playing the Simulation

Strategy: Peace, Development or Dominance?

Throughout gameplay, students are working towards cooperative goals, country development objectives, and competitive goals . Each turn, they’re confronted with a myriad of choices, all of which have consequences that require thought and strategy. 

Some students will make exemplary strategic moves and thrive in the simulation. Many other students start with ambitious goals but make mistakes due to bad planning, not thinking through the reactions of others, poor communication and poor diplomacy… and they may fail miserably. These students learn valuable lessons by failing and thankfully this is a low-stakes digital environment where they can still get a good grade for participating fully. They’re able to take these lessons and apply them to their real life where it really matters!

Cooperative Global Goals

End World Hunger, Global Peace Award, Wipe out Terrorism and Save the Planet! These are common goals for the entire world; either all of the countries work together and everyone receives the points or no one achieves the goal. 

Country Development Goals

This is based on the country’s development of domestic factors: citizens’ health, welfare, environment, safety, culture, and education. Every turn each country receives a Quality of Life score that can be anywhere from Despicable to Incomparable.

Competitive Country Goals

Healthiest, Most Educated, Safest, Greatest-Poverty-Fighting Country, Most Environmentally Friendly, Most Cultured, Most Scientifically Advanced, Most Militarily Powerful and Most Politically Astute.

The Instructor's Role

Instructor's Role Photo

Reality: challenges, opportunities, and tradeoffs

Students start out with aspirational goals and a strategy to achieve greatness, yet reality quickly demonstrates great plans are difficult to achieve! They must grapple with a complex mix of domestic and international factors as they experience first-hand how maddeningly complicated global politics truly is. They’re presented with conundrums such as guns vs. butter. Suddenly there’s a mountain melting that could flood the world, terrorists are attacking and their population is rioting because of famine – ACK! 

This “controlled chaos” affects students on a personal level: they’ll experience real emotions like excitement, frustration and shock! You’ll find a wealth of teachable moments and students will be asking you intelligent questions as they try to figure out what to do. Working through these issues is how real learning happens and it’s the reason the Statecraft IR Simulation is so effective. 

Many Possible Strategies,

National Decisions Required Concerning:

Global Issues that Cannot be Ignored:

Awards for Statecraft IR Screen on Mobile Zoom View

Conclusion & Grading

If you’re looking for even more detailed information, see the Resources page for the instructor manual, sample syllabus and other helpful documentation. 

Let's do this! Experience Statecraft for Yourself

Book your personal demo today! We’ll answer your questions, show you how these cool features work and help you set up your first Statecraft IR Simulation.

Course concepts covered

The multidimensional International Relations Simulation program covers over 50 course concepts within major IR sub-categories. Using the simulation creates new opportunities to demonstrate how course concepts come to life. Students are experiencing lessons first-hand so they’re more engaged and develop personal opinions about what they’re learning. Instructors report being able to have more productive lessons and more interesting conversations with students. 

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Global Environmental Politics

Levels of Analysis

International Political Economy

Two Level Games

International Security


Theoretical Perspectives

Human Rights

Human Security


Foreign Policy

Alternative Theoretical Perspectives

Reasons the Statecraft IR Simulation is so effective:

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Large Lecture Class

Results you’ll experience:

Costs much less than a textbook

Students pay




out of 5 stars

Instructors rated Statecraft Customer Service 4.72 of 5 stars in the Spring 2021 User Satisfaction Survey

Excellent Customer Support

Get started today to experience how Statecraft brings International Relations to life in your course!

You can sign up online now to get started immediately or book your personal demo! We’ll give you a complete product tour, answer all of your questions and help you configure your first Statecraft IR Simulation.

Statecraft Simulations are used in 15 countries at over 475 universities

Statecraft Project LeaderMaker

As a company, we are passionate about student success! Our mission is to engage students in social science topics in a way that ignites their curiosity, excitement for learning, and social skills regardless of their learning styles or socio-economic disadvantages. In the spirit of this mission, we founded the Statecraft Project LeaderMaker, which donates simulation accounts to low-income high schools. 

How it works:

The number of accounts donated is determined by evaluating school’s free lunch percentage and unique budget constraints. Contact Joe at [email protected] to learn more about the program. 

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If you’re still looking for info, make sure to book your personalized demo today! Along with a product tour, we’ll chat about how your sim of interest can work best for your unique class situation.

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