Teaching About Complex Systems Using the STELLA Modeling Software

from www.usra.edu esselearnmod.html

Sunday, December 12, 2010, 9:00 am - 5:30 pm

In conjunction with the AGU Annual Meeting in San Francisco, CA
City College of San Francisco Ocean Campus

Fee: US $50 | Limit: 25 participants | Registration deadline: November 22, 2010

Note: This workshop has already taken place. See the workshop program for links to presentations and other material from the workshop.

Numerical modeling is a widely used tool in the Earth and Environmental Sciences, but can be intimidating for students with limited mathematical backgrounds and/or math anxiety. In this workshop, we present STELLA, an iconographic box modeling software package particularly beneficial in teaching basic modeling skills and in fostering student understanding of complex systems. Workshop participants will have the opportunity to work with existing models of phenomena such as radioactive decay, climate change, and thermohaline circulation, and will also work with other participants to generate new models to meet their own course needs. Discussions will cover such topics as the pedagogical value of teaching students how to model, and strengths and limitations of the STELLA software.

Who should apply: any faculty member interested in incorporating numerical modeling into classroom exercises. Faculty at all levels of instruction (e.g. introductory level courses, intermediate undergraduate courses, senior seminar, graduate seminar) and across the range of disciplines in Earth and Environmental Science are encouraged to apply. Early career faculty are particularly welcome.

View the workshop program | Read the workshop overview

Workshop Conveners

  • David Bice, Pennsylvania State University
  • Kirsten Menking, Vassar College

This workshop is an On the Cutting Edge follow-on workshop designed to disseminate themes and outcomes from a prior workshop on Developing Student Understanding of Complex Systems in the Geosciences. This workshop is part of the On the Cutting Edge professional development program for current and future geoscience faculty, and is sponsored by the National Association of Geoscience Teachers with funding provided by a grant from the National Science Foundation - Division of Undergraduate Education .

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