Infect, Attach or Bounce off?: Linking Real Data and Computational Models to Make Sense of the Mechanisms of Diffusion

This study explores how the interplay between data and model design shifts 6th graders’ students' ideas about diffusion as they build a range of models (“paper and pencil” and computational models). We present a new web-based environment and approach that integrates model-based and data-based features in the same display which facilitates the comparison of models and real-world data. Further, we illustrate how this environment and approach lead students to converge on one canonical scientific model.

Fuhrmann, T., Wagh, A., Eloy, A., Wolf, J., Bumbacher, E., Wilkerson, M., & Blikstein, P. (2022). Infect, attach or bounce off?: Linking real data and computational models to make sense of the mechanisms of diffusion. Proceedings of the 2022 Annual Meeting of the International Society for the Learning Sciences (ISLS 2022), Hiroshima, Japan.