Computer-based educational simulations are seen as a subset of the larger set of instructional approaches whose goal is to help learners come to a better understanding of real, complex systems. In this paper, a conceptualization is developed for the domain “understanding complex systems” and within this, a scheme is offered whereby computer simulations are considered relative to interrelated cognitive and instructional aspects. Techniques and trends in simulations relative to visualization, interactivity, and intelligence are discussed within the framework of the scheme. The relationship between microcomputer-based laboratory environments and computer-based simulations in science education is considered, as well as the emergence of MMLs—multimedia laboratories. MBLs and MMLs are compared with respect to the trends of visualization, interactivity, and intelligence as a way of identifying common aspects with simulations in science education. Promising directions for improving the effectiveness of both MBLs and simulations are suggested.
|Title of host publication||Microcomputer-based labs: Educational research and standards|
|Editors||Robert F. Tinker|
|Place of Publication||Berlin|
|Publication status||Published - 1996|
|Name||NATO ASI series F: Computer and systems sciences|