Absolutely incredible course in diplomacy that gives you a perfect glimpse of understanding how diplomacy works in practice and what achievements you need to posses in order to become a good diplomat.
Great course. I had a general interest in diplomacy and wanted a little taste of what it was, this course has provided me just that. It has amazing resources to help enhance our knowledge of diplomacy
par Mfitundinda A B•
par PerinAnn K•
Depending on what you're looking for, you might find this course very insightful or a complete waste of time.
For someone new to the concept of diplomacy, using this to get a base level understanding and come to your own opinions of what composes diplomacy, it's a good course. The material is pretty straightforward, gives a multi-faceted purview, and basically facilitates the learner to draw their own meanings.
However, if you want anything beyond this, you might be disappointed. The instructor (Dr Simon Rofe) contributes virtually nothing beyond asking 3 questions to a number of different people. There are no insights from his side, and no attempt to synthesise the varying opinions. The peer-review assignments are a mixed bag, as I did read many insightful answers, but received very minimal feedback on my own answers.
I also found the Discussion Forums completely useless - not a single student seemed to be here to talk about the subject or learn more. Everyone just wants reviews on their assignments to pass on to the next week. If the course could be tweaked to encourage more healthy discussion, or students could even take initiative to respond on these forums, this might have led to a more purposeful learning experience.
To conclude, for someone who had never learned about diplomacy before, I got an introduction that was useful and enabled me to draw my own understanding on the topic. If I was paying for a certificate, however, I would have been disappointed. (Also, each week's content is very brief and this takes no time at all to complete - again good for if you want to rush through it, not great if you were looking for more detailed insight.)
par Fred V•
We have a lot of respect for SOAS (actually, we studied there long ago). We have a lot of respect for the diplomacy profession. We think we could learn a lot from this course. Our expectations were high. In this review, we benchmark the course to what how good it may have been.
By professional habit or not, the course does not always steer away from a self-serving representation of diplomacy as the work of heroes who can save the world from conflicts and others. The course keeps to general presentations of out-of-action diplomats. We regret not to have seen more and deeper analysis on case studies of diplomatic negotiations: the national and personal dilemma, the planning and execution of negotiations, the gate-keeping of politicians and journalists, interactions with intelligence, etc. This may be a matter for another course?
par Erica L•
I felt the course was a comprehensive 'introduction' to diplomacy. The texts were relevant and some of the video interviews were interesting if at times a little repetitive. I felt that the course instructor had more of a 'facilitator' role than a teaching role and this was a disappointment.
My other critique has to do with the gender and diversity balance of those interviewed as part of the course - while it maybe be reflective of departments of international relations or foreign service demographics, I found it very pale and male. I would recommend this course to those with little to no background in international affairs or diplomatic studies.
par Francis M M•
I believe it is too easy to pass. There were some "peers" who I reviewed who have no right to pass this course as their answers show that they have no idea what they are talking about. I wish the course was crafted better in the sense that I really have to earn the certificate. I am an actual diplomat so to me this was a bit disappointing.
If interested, I can help craft a better course than this. I'm happy to get a Certificate but I don't think I really learned or earned anything.
par Paulina H•
The course is a good introduction and has spike in me further interest in the topics explored here. I will be taking its sister course on diplomacy and the UN. I would give it 4 stars but there was no attempt at gender balancing the speakers. I got tired of the opinions of white, British/Anglo-American males. Only 2 female speakers out of 12! Unacceptable. The readings were rather good, especially that by Harry Rudin.
par Weill S•
Interesting reading materials and relevant interventions of professionals. I also appreciated the fact that we had to grade and be graded by other students in a "diplomatic" way. Nonetheless, the programme was a little too general to be really demanding and challenging I think, and I would have appreciated more actual reading materials and/or references from the presetn time in the videos.
par Michael O•
The course is ok. The tasks are very easy and basic, the videos are informative enough. The first few readings seem pretty unrelated, but they get better and towards the end become more interesting and informative. You can complete the whole thing in a couple of days no problem.
par Mazigh B•
Interesting online course as introduction with brief concepts and definitions on diplomacy, its role, influence and interaction in the modern world. Recommend others to attend this online course to gain required intro knowledge on diplomacy.
par Karen N S•
Good course that provides the basics of what diplomacy is. I suppose I was expecting something more advanced which obviously would be an advanced degree course. Nervetheless, a good start to understanding diplomacy.
par Johan d W•
I would love to see this interesting lightweight introduction grow into a solid university level course with more reading, weekly added content, tests, academic discussions and a proactive moderator at the forum.
par Duke O•
Very limited points and questions are being explored. However it makes use of very knowledgable people, and allows for different points of perspectives in order to formulate your own idea of what diplomacy is.
par Mirna M R A•
It is a basic course for those who want a general idea on diplomacy, the information wasn't up to date, and there wasn't a lot of feedback in the debate area. It had low participation, at least in my cycle.
par Nathan D•
Quite an interesting course. Some of the readings I couldn't access, and videos lacked depth in terms of subject, Overall was enjoyable and recommend for those interesting in international affairs.
par Sabina S L•
Fruitful materials for reference, yet the structure of whole course relies on bite-size interviews of scholars, which might seem lack of systematic teaching throughout the whole subject.
par ibrahim A T•
It is alright but several people take advantage of the lax review criteria to submit one letter reviews. Better grading system would be good. Material is all fine.
par Eva B•
great introduction to the world of diplomacy, the videos are a bit repetitive unfortunately. But still worth my time as I started knowing nothing formal at all.
par Zhe L•
Yeah, this course is REALLY different from other MOOCs. I wonder if I can learn anything from a course that contains such little content.
par Shakthi V D S•
More timely and relevant text material would have greatly helped in broadening our understanding. Basic and easy for beginners to grasp.
par MA T Y•
Good to know how many academics and professions think about diplomacy but very few concrete concepts and examples given by lecturers
par Razieh M N•
In comparison with other courses that I have passed, this course was inferior from the material and discussion perspective.
par ADI S P R•
Short and crispy.
It tells us about the functions, qualities and scope of Diplomacy in Modern World
par Marina A M•
Interesting yet far simpler than expected. I would recommend having more course materials.
par Md. F R•
It is very important of all level of people.and concern about world politics.
par Shawnna R T•
It was a great experience! Definitely gained more knowledge about diplomacy.