Estudios pedagógicos (Valdivia)
versión On-line ISSN 0718-0705
SCHAFFERNICHT, Martin. Flexible model exploration paths based on feedback loops - the case of MacroLab. Estud. pedagóg. [online]. 2010, vol.36, n.1, pp. 211-234. ISSN 0718-0705. http://dx.doi.org/10.4067/S0718-07052010000100012.
A system dynamics model consists of feedback loops. So possibly, for exploring such a model, it is not important with which variable one starts, since the loops make one go through the entire model. Thus multiple exploration itineraries might be defined such as to allow flexible work by students, while they still explore the same variables and links. This paper reports from an attempt to do this with the MacroLab macroeconomical model. Los results of an assessment of students metal models suggest that in principle this may be possible. However, the usual comparison methods based on the distance ratio are inappropriate. It is shown how loops can be used to design exploration activities, and indications for a generic method for comparing mental models based on system dynamics models. The conclusions are preliminary and lines for future research are defined.
Palabras clave : model exploration; mental models; mental model comparison; feedback loops.