Using NetLogo as a tool to encourage scientific thinking across disciplines

David Gammack


In this article we discuss the possible uses of NetLogo as an educational tool for High School and early-years undergraduate students. The paper is geared towards teachers from all disciplines that require students to problem solve, be quantitative and logical but want a project orientated platform to build or reinforce knowledge. The goal is to highlight possible ways to excite students who perceive themselves to be weak mathematically by non-traditional computer-based exercises. Here we choose a model of Toxoplasmosis gondii to demonstrate our ideas and show how scientific thinking and mathematical modeling can be used by the wider teaching community. Although these methods could be used for any age group or scholarly level, here we build our ideas around students who have seen high school algebra and may have studied one semester of differential calculus. Finally, we give some ideas of how NetLogo could be incorporated across the curriculum.


NetLogo, modeling, interdisciplinary

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