Title: Monitoring students’ growth using system dynamics
Date/Time: November 12th, 2015 @ 2:00 PM
Place: 213 Atanasoff Hall
Faculty Advisor: Professor David Weiss
Researchers have long been trying to analyze the problems associated with the teaching processes at universities. Most such research is focused on trying to understand the problems associated with teaching and analyzing the impacts of these problems on student learning. However, little work has been done in modelling the teaching/learning process to understand how different problems affect the knowledge gained by the students. The problems may impact students’ motivational development, teachers’ teaching interest or even students’ learning process. In this paper, we propose a model that we use to simulate the existing teaching process at universities, using system dynamics. We demonstrate that an analysis of different parameters extracted from academic, personal and motivational fronts using system dynamics can provide a clear picture of the influence of real life events on students’ performance. System dynamics helped us to monitor the students’ growth over the duration of a course, guiding us to analyze the root cause of the problems. As a result, system dynamics helps to provide a solution for efficiently dealing with students’ difficulties. The results show various trends among teachers’ enthusiasm, students’ enthusiasm, students’ knowledge, test anxiety, teaching quality and students’ performance over time. For example, teachers’ enthusiasm reduces by approximately 4% when teachers’ mental stress increases by 10%.