Simulation Report

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Simulation, teaching and learning using simulation, motivation through simulation, prediction through simulation, advantages and disadvantages of simulation, suitability for implementation of simulation in Malaysia

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Simulation Report

  1. 1. DEPARTMENT OF BIOLOGY FACULTY OF SCIENCE AND MATHEMATICS INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY IN SCIENCE (SSI 3013) Title : Report On SimulationLecturer : Encik Azmi Bin IbrahimName : Darvina Lim Choo KhengNo. Matrice : D201010XXXXXSemester : 1 Session 2012/2013Group :B 1
  2. 2. CONTENTSList Of Figures 31.0 Introduction 42.0 Teaching And Learning With Simulation – Stella 4 2.1 Preparation 5 2.2 Briefing 6 2.3 Modeling 7 2.4 Guided Practice 8 2.5 Checking For Understanding 8 2.6 Independent Practice 9 2.7 Closure 113.0 Motivation Through Simulation 114.0 Prediction Through Simulation 135.0 Advantages And Disadvantages Of Simulation 16 2
  3. 3. 6.0 Suitability For Implementation Of Simulation In Malaysia 187.0 Conclusion 19Reference 21LIST OF FIGURESFigure 2.1 View of the model: Initial displacement=0.10m; String length=1.0m 9Figure 2.2 View of the model: After running the experiment with different mass 10 of ballFigure 3.1 Result of one period oscillation of ball and string length 12Figure 4.1 Results – Experiment for relationship between initial displacement 15 and amplitude generated 3
  4. 4. 1.0 INTRODUCTIONA simulation is generally a simplified model that contains the essential elements ofthe thing simulated (Simonson and Thompson, 1994). In a simulation, the computerdoes not just present a predetermined situation. The strength of a simulation is the factthat a computer responds to students inputs; that is, the computer’s responses dependon the choices students make, and there is not set scenario. The simulation mimicsreality, with outcomes that depend on the user’s decisions and actions (Geisart andFutrell, 2000). Simulations are best used by the students after they have mastered a set ofconcepts and are ready to apply the acquired knowledge (Norton and Sprague, 2001). 4
  5. 5. Simulation allows the students to perform higher cognitive thinking skills such asapplication, analysis and synthesis during the simulation process. Therefore,simulation exercises based on the “guided discovery” learning theory were found tomotivating, to expose misconceptions and areas of knowledge deficiency, to assist inintegrating information, and to enhance transfer of learning (Mayes, 1992). Stella (software that developed by the isee systems), is software that can usedto develop simulations needed in an easy way by the educators. Besides that, Stellamodels provide endless opportunities to explore and watching what happens, inspiringthe exciting moments of learning. Stella models also allow the educators tocommunicate how a system works – what goes in, how the system is impacted, whatare the outcomes. In addition, Stella supports diverse learning styles with a widerange of storytelling features. Diagrams, charts, and animation help visual learnersdiscover relationships between variables in an equation.2.0 TEACHING AND LEARNING WITH SIMULATION – STELLAAs stated in the introduction part, simulation only best to be used by the students afterthey have mastered a set of concepts and are ready to apply the acquired knowledge(Norton and Sprague, 2001). Without the mastering of the knowledge, the objectivesof teaching and learning using simulation will be inefficient and ineffective. As to usethe models provided in Stella for teaching and learning purposes, a few instructionalsteps must be taken to ensure the quality of integrating simulation in classroom.2.1 PREPARATIONFirst of all, considering of using simulation like Stella models in teaching and learningprocess need intensive simulation-integrated teaching and learning preparation fromboth sides, instructor (in this case is a teacher) and students. The lesson preparationfor using simulation can be varies with the type and complexity of the simulation.Effective simulation-using teacher employ three unique types of knowledge: contentknowledge about the specific topics that they teach; pedagogical knowledge, or theunderstanding of how to teach and manage students (Shulman, 1986); and simulation 5
  6. 6. knowledge, which involves an understanding of the unique characteristics ofsimulation software that lend themselves to a particular aspects of the teaching andlearning processes (Pierson, 2001). The teacher also must take into considerations thatwhether the simulation is suitable as individuals, partners, groups or whole classwork. Students will learn through instructional simulation when they are activelyengaged. Hence, the teacher must prepare to teach the students the ways to predict andexplain the outcome they expected the simulation to generate. Every effort should bemade during this state to prevent the students to become passive during thesimulation. As an example, before using Stella models – Pendulum Story, the teacher mustmake sure the students have master the basic knowledge and concepts of oscillation.Teacher must make sure the background preparation has been carefully designed forthe students so that they have developed the basic understanding of the domain ofoscillation before they enter the simulation in order to achieve the maximumeffectiveness. On the other hands, the students in this state should be prepared from theaspects of knowledge and concepts needed during the simulation. The students mustread and understand the concept of pendulum, oscillation and the type of motion thatis called simple harmonic motion. Other concepts that should master by the studentsare displacement, period, angular velocity, mass, length, gravity, friction, amplitude,frequency and driving force. The students must understand that simple harmonicmotion is “the swing back and forth motion that occurs when a pendulum consists of aparticle of mass, attached to a frictionless pivot by a cable that has negligible mass, ispulled a short distance away from its rest position and released.” Students should realize that in this type of system, a few assumptions aremade, such as: a. The mass of the bob is concentrated at a point b. The mass of the cable/string is negligible c. No friction force occurs at the pivot 6
  7. 7. d. No other friction forces take place in this motion Moreover, the students should also understand the other harmonic motionssuch as damped harmonic motion that is closer to the reality situation as in real life;friction or some other energy-dissipating mechanism is always present. The changesthat take places from vary aspects like amplitude, angular velocity, displacement,period and frequency should be comprehended. All these preparation has to be doneas the Pendulum Story model involved all these knowledge and concepts within it andshould be observed and comprehend by the students.2.2 BRIEFINGThis state occurs after the preparation state. During this state, the teacher states thepurpose of the lesson or the objectives, based on content and simulation standards thatwill be met. Students hear a sense of why they would want to learn it and how theywill know they have learned it. Besides that, the teacher and students also need to go through pre-stimulationdiscussion. The teacher need to give a complete brief about how the simulation works,the skills, equations and knowledge needed when using the simulation and the waysthat can be go wrong in the simulation. Students should predict and explain theoutcome they expect the simulation to generate at the pre-simulation discussion. For the Pendulum Story model, the model has prepared a background andcontext as shown above. The background and context should be observed andanalyses by the teacher and students. The students can be asked questions before theyplay the simulation. In addition, the teacher should analyses and discusses the core model structurethat present in Pendulum Story model. The terms use in the Pendulum Story modelhas to be explained in a proper and order manner to make sure the students do notconfuse when they conduct the simulation. At the core model structure, some termshave been given a short description and meaning. 7
  8. 8. In this state, the teacher could instruct the student to conduct the simulation intwo distinct situations; one is the theoretical simple pendulum system while anotherone is the “real world” condition pendulum system. The students are asking toanalyses the similarities and difference that occur between these two situations duringthe simulation process. Moreover, since that the model has two graphs display on it,the displacement versus time graph and the velocity versus displacement time graph,the teacher must ensure the students understand the interactions shown by the twographs.2.3 MODELINGAfter the briefing state, the teacher need to demonstrate how students will be able toshow that they have learned the information, especially showing examples anddescribing any products that they will be able to produce to exhibit their learningusing simulation. Teacher will open the Conduct Experiments part that present in themodel to give a brief idea to the students what they should do with the model. TheInstructions Box that present in the left part should be explained and modeled by theteacher so that the students got the brief idea about how to conduct the experimentusing the model. The teacher can demonstrate the simulation using the model in differentsituations to investigate different relationships so that the students will know thecorrect sequences and methods of using the model to achieve better understanding andobtain the input. The teacher must set what type of situation and relationship that he/she hopethe students to understand. This is because the situation and relationship that can betested using this model is wide. To achieve the maximum input, the teacher mustchoose the appropriate and suitable situation and relationship that needed to beobserved and learned by the students.2.4 GUIDED PRACTICE 8
  9. 9. At this state, the teacher plays the role as instructor to guide the students using thesimulation model. Guided practice is students’ opportunity to interact with thematerial in a sheltered, assisted environment, often with the teacher leading the waythrough the necessary steps of an exercise (Bitter and Legacy, 2008). This state is thebest chance for the teacher as he/she can observe and ensure that the students haveperform well according to the instructions given using the simulation model. Theteacher also can observe the skills and ability of the students to use the modelcorrectly. If the students use the wrong skills, the teacher can guide them and giveinstruction again to ensure the students do the simulation in proper manner. For the Pendulum Story simulation model, it is recommend that the teachercan have the model projected to a large screen or monitor as to guide the students togo through the simulation model in a procedure step by step in order to give thestudents a chance of refresh back the steps that has been performed by the teacherduring the modeling state and also to remind the necessary steps that cannot beskipped in the simulation to avoid any error in the result obtained later. At this stage,some scientific skills that can be practiced by the students are inferring, makehypotheses, identify the variables that they are required to conduct the simulation asan experiment, and design the appropriate procedures for themselves by using thesimulation. The teacher can guided the students at this stage about the properprocedures to use this simulation.2.5 CHECKING FOR UNDERSTANDINGThis ‘Checking For Understanding’ state is not after the ‘Guided Practice’ state butapply simultaneously with it. Before, during and after guided practice, the teacherquestions students to monitor and assess how well they understand the conceptsbefore moving on. If students understand it, then the lesson can progress; if not, theteacher may need to back up and reteach the concepts (Bitter and Legacy, 2008). For the simulation lesson to be success, the teacher needs to monitor thestudents during guided state and may ask the students to come in front of class andexplain to the classmate about the skills and concept that he has learn. During this 9
  10. 10. process, the teacher can observes the students and jot down brief notes of studentprogress either by paper or tablet computer.2.6 INDEPENDENT PRACTICEAfter the students have master the content and skills needed to use the PendulumStory simulation model, the students are ready to perform the simulationindependently, in the form of experiment, group work, class activities and others. Inthis state, the students are free to explore the simulation model and investigate therelationship and situation in the model in order to achieved the input that stated by theobjectives. For this independent practice state using the Pendulum Story simulationmodel, it is recommended that the situation and relationships that the students areencouraged to perform and analyses only the theoretical pendulum system. Thismeasure is taken to ensure effectiveness in the teaching and learning process as toomuch situations and relationships to be investigated will make the students confuse.The teacher needs to select the best situation and relationship (in this case forsecondary students is the theoretical pendulum system) to be investigated. For the theoretical pendulum system to investigate the relationship ofdisplacement (amplitude) versus time (period), in the condition that mass of ballchanging and other variables are fixed. The examples of steps that can be performedby the students are:Step 1: Fixed the initial displacement (m) to 0.10m and string length (m) to 1.0m of the pendulum. 10
  11. 11. Figure 2.1 View of the model: Initial displacement = 0.10m; String length = 1.0mStep 2: Adjust the mass of ball (kg) to a few sets of masses such as 0.01kg, 0.5kg, 1.0kg, 1.5kg and 2.0kg and run the experiment to obtain the graphs. Figure 2.2 View of the model: After running the experiment with different mass of ball 11
  12. 12. Step 3: After obtained the result, analyze the graph and discuss the relationship. For this experiment: a. The changing in mass of ball does not have effect on the displacement (amplitude) and the period of the system. b. The displacement (amplitude) still remains the same as the initial displacement it being released that is 0.10m. c. The time / period take to complete one oscillation still the same although the mass of ball is changing. The students can apply the same steps to other relationships that they arerequired to investigate and modify the steps given according to their experimentneeds. The result obtained by students can be presented in report and submitted to theteacher for assessment purpose.2.7 CLOSUREThis state is the last state in simulation; however it is also play an important role insimulation. At this state, the teacher needs to cap off the learning experience with afew final examples or statements to help the students make sense of what they havelearned. The students are given chances to reflect on and discuss what they havelearned from the simulation, solidifying new knowledge into a coherent understandingand improving the chance that this new information will indeed be used (Bitter andLegacy, 2008). At this state, post-simulation discussion with the students can lead to deeperlearning about the pendulum system. The teacher has to integrate the simulation goalsinto the post-simulation discussion as to refresh and solidify the learning goals andpurposes of using the simulation. The students can be required to speak up or write 12
  13. 13. down their reflection about simulation that they have learned, how and why theybehaved as they did during the simulation. Besides that, the teacher can enhance the students’ understanding by extendingto new problem and situation. For the Pendulum Story simulation model, the studentscan be challenged by given a new set of parameter that include the friction anddriving force and ask them to investigate the relationship of different kinds ofvariables. These enhancement elements are closer to the real life situation. This can beset as the platform for the students to link between theoretical system and real lifesituation that involve pendulum system and also other systems that related toharmonic motion.3.0 MOTIVATION THROUGH SIMULATIONMotivation is a very vital component in the classrooms as teacher plays the role tomanage the teaching and learning environment in the classroom. Motivation ofstudents in a classroom often seem from several observations such as students showinterest and enthusiasm, give high focus attention and concentration to learn the tasksor knowledge that being introduced by the teacher. Educational simulations have been found to be effective in motivating studentsto learn (Ke, 2008; Papastergiou, 2009; Tuzun, Yilmaz-Soylu, Karakus, Inal &Kizilkaya, 2009). Denton’s 1994 study supports the motivational power of simulation.By using simulation such as Stella, students are given the opportunities to explore andexperience with situations that they could not work directly with in real life due toseveral factors such as time-consuming, dangerous and costly. Simulation, indeed gives intrinsic motivation to students through severalaspects. One of the aspects is motivation through curiosity when using simulation.Malone and Lepper (1987) noted that curiosity is one of the primary factors that drivelearning. Students are always curious about new things and new experiences. Byusing simulation, the motivation in them can be bringing out as the students arepresented with something that connects their present knowledge or skills with a more 13
  14. 14. desirable level. Simulation gives more interaction in classroom compared to thetraditional ways of teaching and learning. When using simulation, the students arecurious to find out the results that can be generated and this motivates them to befurther exploring the whole simulation just to get the answer that they want. Forexamples, students are required to find out the relationship of one period oscillation ofball and string length. Several results (shown in diagram below) can be generated bythe students to understand the relationship. For the result obtained in the diagrambelow, the discussion that can be stated is the period for one oscillation of ballincreases as the string length increases. Figure 3.1 Result of one period oscillation of ball and string lengthThe students do not need to feel fear that any mistakes in the simulation can bringharm or negative effects to them as the simulation can be repeated numerous of timeand any mistakes can be reversed during the process, plus does not required too manytime for the reversing process. Example, using Pendulum Story provided by Stella,the results of any relationships want to be investigated can be repeated using the resetbutton. 14
  15. 15. Besides that, simulation such as Stella can motivate the students throughcontrol. Control is the natural behavior that most people like to feel. When usingsimulation, students are given the control power to set up the experiment orexperience scenes and the kinds of variables and values to be used in the situation. Students who were allowed to choose the amount and the context of practiceproblems reported more positive attitudes (Morrison, Ross and Baldwin, 1992) andproviding students control led to increased motivation and greater learning (Cordovaand Lepper, 1996). In Pendulum Story, the students are given the control power onthe different kind of variables such as the mass of the ball, initial displacement, stringlength, existence of friction and driving force. The students also control theexperiment through several buttons like run, pause, stop and reset. The controllingpower in simulation given to the students motivate them to keep explore thesimulation model. Furthermore, simulation normally requires cooperation from the studentsamong themselves as the simulation in classroom normally conducted in anexperimenting ways. Motivation can be generated through cooperation when usingsimulation. Most individuals feel quite satisfied when helping each others to achievetheir goals. By using simulation in groups, the students need to cooperate with otherto obtain the result they are investigating. When the result they obtain throughcooperation being recognized by the teacher, the students will feel more motivatedand eager to try other simulations in group form.4.0 PREDICTION THROUGH STIMULATIONNiels Bohr has stated that prediction is very difficult, especially if it’s about thefuture. However, prediction can be make easy and almost accurate to the real lifesituation’s result that going to be generated in the future by using simulation. Theskill of forecasts can be learned by the students through using simulation. Forexample, students use Pendulum Story simulation to investigate the relationship ofinitial displacement of the ball and the amplitude generated, with other variables keepconstant. 15
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  18. 18. Figure 4.1 Results - Experiment for relationship between initial displacement and amplitude generated From the result shown above, the students can predict that the initialdisplacement of the ball has directly proportional relationship with the amplitudegenerated. The initial displacement of ball is the amplitude of the ball in the casewhen only gravity takes place and no existence of friction force and driving force. Prediction skill is learned by students based on the result generated throughsimulation. This actually promotes higher level thinking such as analyses, synthesisand evaluate in the Taxonomy Bloom as the students need to analyses the resultsobtained and synthesis new formula and theory from the results; plus in most casesthe students need to evaluate the prediction that they have make either is relevant,logic and acceptable after comparing and analyses the result obtained fromsimulation. 18
  19. 19. 5.0 ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES OF SIMULATIONSimulation has a lots of advantages in itself when apply to students. One of the majorbenefits is deep learning. Deep learning means that the content studied by the studentsnot only “surface learning” but more than that. The students can empower theirknowledge that has been learned through simulation and can apply the skills andknowledge in many situations that similar to what they have come across. Thestudents can learn scientific methods that include the significant of model building.Simulation provides a platform to the students to think like a scientist when they usingthe simulation and practice their scientific thinking and skills. The students can alsoinvestigate and make hypotheses about the relationships among the variables in amodel or models. This is because the students are given the control power to changethe parameter values and observed the result generated from the change of parameterthey did. Feel of important role played by variables and the significance of magnitudechanges in parameters also can be developed by students when practicing withsimulation. Data issues, probability and sampling theory also learned by studentswhen they using the simulation. Simulation helps students to understand that scientificknowledge rests on the foundation of testable hypotheses. Another advantage of simulation is student involvement. Normal traditionalteaching and learning method more teacher-oriented and basically the students justreceive the information, knowledge and skills that teacher taught. However, withsimulation, it is easy to make the students take part actively in the classroom teachingand learning environment by involved them in the simulation model. Simulation cangrab the attention by placing them to be in charge of the event taking part in thesimulation and asking the students what should be done with the event provided. In addition, the simulation using computer software like Stella also considersafe and low cost compared to real life simulation. The simulation program providesendless repeatable interaction. The computer based simulation has fewer dangers thanreal world in events or models that need students to observe such as volcano eruption,earthquake and tsunami. With simulation, students can experiment with strategies thatthey might need to use when they face difficulties such as the correct method to dealwith nuclear breakdown before the real situation happen. Other events that difficult toobserve in short period, impossible to be observed in nowadays or very costly to be 19
  20. 20. experimenting in real world also are made possible by using simulation. Rate ofglobal warming is one of the examples of events that require a long period and costly.Simulation also helps students to focus at one part of the processes if the eventinvolves a series of processes by slow down the progress or isolate it (Norton, P &Sprague, D, 2001). By using simulation, all these obstacles can be overcome and theresult obtained also has high accuracy compared to the real world’s result. Simulation also provides better transfer of knowledge and skills to students.Simulation help students transfer the knowledge they have learned to a new situationand let them to run over the other situations repeatedly. This can empower thestudents’ knowledge and skills. This is what leads to deep learning in students.Furthermore, simulation program can be manipulated in such a ways that maximumlearning can be achieved. The students can match their knowledge and skill with thesimulation level and speed up the simulation (Norton, P & Sprague, D, 2001) if theyalready understand the process and observed the result come from their decisions andthe sequences of interaction of different variables in the simulation. If the studentsstill uncertain about the process, the students can slow down the simulation andobserve the process in much closer perspectives. On the other hands, simulation also has some disadvantages due to itspotential limitations that have been identified by Maddux et al. (1997). The firstdisadvantage is due to limitation in time. As stated in advantage point, simulationprovides endless and repeatable process and has many variables that can be controlledand manipulated. This indicates that simulation will have difficulties to fit into a tightor nice schedule as the students may use a lots of time to explore the program and testvaries variables. Besides that, Maddux et al (1997) also stated that immediateconsequences of decisions revealed by simulations can sometimes be threatening andproduce more apprehension than traditional teaching methods. Moreover, disadvantage also occurs when the simulation results are difficult tobe interpreting by the teacher and students. The teacher might not really understandthe concept lied behind the simulation well and this may create difficulties to theteacher and students to analyses the result. One more disadvantages that cannot be underestimated is the real cost that useto build up the simulation. Simulation that suitable for a certain concepts need to be 20
  21. 21. built up first before it can be programmed into a simulation software. The cost topurchase the software and the collection of relevant results from all kind of sources ishigh.6.0 SUITABILITY FOR IMPLEMENTATION OF SIMULATION IN MALAYSIAMalaysia still consider as a country that is not really familiar with the simulation. Oureducation is more towards the traditional ways rather than using simulation as animportant tool in teaching and learning process. So, the issue now is whether thesimulation considers being suitable to be implemented in our country? Judging from skilled labors that present in our country nowadays for thebuilding of simulation at large scale, our skilled labors are still consider very lesscompared to the market need if the implementation of simulation is launched.Malaysian universities still produce very little engineers who know how to usesimulation tool and produce high quality simulation that suit the market. However,some efforts have been made by the local universities such as Universiti TeknologiMalaysia (UTM), Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) and Universiti TeknologiPetronas (UTP). These universities have incorporate simulation into their syllabus tohelp the country to produce the necessary skilled labor. But, most of these universitiesdo not make it compulsory; hence there are students that pass through school withoutbeing exposed to it. Although the efforts made for produce the skilled labor is stillconsider very less, first step has been taken by UTM as they proposed the finiteelement analysis made compulsory to final year students of mechanical and civilengineering. In addition, the company in Malaysia that willing to take risks in investingthese simulation technologies especially for education is still consider very low.Corporations in advance countries have been using this type of technology since yearsago. Competitiveness and need to develop or perish are the components thatencourage them to use this simulation technology. Companies in the develop countrywant to compete with additional advantages over the other companies and this has 21
  22. 22. driven them to use simulation in their companies as simulation cost less and giveresult faster than real life testing. Malaysia’s company still cannot value theadvantages that can be brought by simulation. Only certain companies in Malaysialike Petronas and Proton have been using simulation. Hence, the preparedness of our country nowadays to implement simulationespecially in education still consider low. However, our country still can implementthe simulation in nearest future if the preparedness has been set up. Education of thebenefits of simulation to help the company to lift up their company standards shouldbe conducted by the government and private sectors. Companies need to be risky andparticipating in the preparedness. The universities must produce the skilled labor thatneeded by the market so that simulation can be implemented in Malaysia. Thegovernment needs to draw an outline for the implementation of simulation to belaunch. With all these preparedness, the implementation of simulation can belaunched in the future.7.0 CONCLUSIONIn conclusion, simulation is a powerful and effective tool for either educators to beused in their teaching and learning process or company for their company benefits .Simulation like Stella software should be often used by educators as the simulationgives the students the power to manipulate the different variables in the models andcan study the knowledge or concept in different perspectives. The simulation can givethe opportunities to experience and go through events or phenomenons that are notable, dangerous or difficult to observe and collect data. Simulation requires the fullparticipation from the end-users as the end-users are the one that manipulate thewhole models in it. In addition, simulation in education also helps the teacher to simulate thestudents thinking level into a higher level in Taxonomy Bloom, such as analyses,synthesis and evaluate. It also provides a life experience to the students. Simulationalso helps to save the students’ time by allowing the students to repeat the processover and over again until the students clear about the concept. Hence, this advantage 22
  23. 23. can lead to deeper understanding in the students. Stella, which is one of the simulationprograms, has all the benefits stated. Furthermore, simulation can enhance the social collaboration relationship assimulation is usually designed to allow for group decision. Simulation also canprovide almost same as real life situation to the users. 23
  24. 24. REFERENCEBitter, G.G and Legacy, J. M (2008). Using Technology In The Classroom. Boston; Pearson Education, Inc.Cutnell, J.D and Johnson K.W. (2010). Introduction To Physics, New Jersey; John Wiley & Sons (Asia) Pte Ltd.Joyce, B. Calhoun, E. and Hopkins, D (1997). Models Of Learning – Tools For Teaching. Buckingham; Open University Press.Norton, P and Sprague, D (2008). Technology For Teaching. Boston; Pearson Education, Inc. 24
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