Abstract for: System Dynamics Models Created by High School Students, Presented by the Students
For those of us who work with students and who have introduced system dynamics modeling and systems thinking into our curriculum, the time has come to highlight that student work. We need to begin the process of changing the minds of other interested educators and parents. We will not have the statistical data needed to change opinions on a large scale for at least the next five to ten years. So what can be done now? Let the students make our point. We need to make student work public. The work should highlight the important components of the system dynamics method. It should highlight the study of important problems not usually addressed in typical classrooms. It should highlight the thought processes that students go through as they build models and/or analyze problems using feedback. It should show what policies students might recommend, or show what policies currently in place would not work, by using the feedback in the system. It should make a parent want their child to have an opportunity to learn this way. This paper will present some recent models created by students ages 15 to 18 in a system dynamics modeling course in the United States.