Alternative Approaches to Using Modeling and Simulation Tools for Teaching Science

  • Barbara Y. White
  • Christina V. Schwarz
Part of the Modeling Dynamic Systems book series (MDS)


Computer modeling and simulation software are transforming the way science and engineering are done. They make possible analytic and conceptual tools that allow scientists to employ new forms of analysis, engage in new kinds of thought experiments, and create new types of theories. In this chapter, we illustrate how such computer-based tools can also transform the practice of science education. We describe how modeling and simulation tools, such as those embodied in our ThinkerTools software, facilitate a variety of instructional approaches that attempt to realize the increasingly ambitious and varied goals being advocated for modern science education. These goals include engaging young students in authentic scientific inquiry in which they learn about the nature of scientific models and the processes of modeling. They also include enabling students to learn abstract and complex subject matter at increasingly younger ages.


Conceptual Change Simulation Tool Instructional Approach Epistemological Belief Metacognitive Skill 
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© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Barbara Y. White
  • Christina V. Schwarz

There are no affiliations available

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