Modeling and Simulation (M&S) provides a risk-free environment allowing the users to experiment in a computer-generated virtual platform and analyze the what-if scenarios for effective decision support systems. Due to its pervasive usefulness, the concept of M&S is widely used across many sectors, including manufacturing, warehouse operations, supply chain, logistics, transportation, mining, and many more. The field of M&S requires computer-intensive and software-based training, which is very different from teaching in a regular classroom setting. Hence, we develop a three-stage (mimic-guide-scaffold) project-based teaching strategy to enhance students learning experience in M&S education. Here, students first follow the instructor to understand basics of simulation and become familiar with AnyLogic software. Second, the students work on a group project under the passive supervision of the instructor to enhance their problem-solving capability. In the third step, students work independently on a similar but extensive project to scaffold their knowledge. The project was designed to answer three high-level key research questions for a hospital system including systems throughput, resource utilization, and patients’ length of stay reduction. We performed a thorough evaluation using an anonymous survey, where thirty-one students participated to provide their feedback. This paper provides a detailed description of the projects including problem statements, learning objectives, evaluation rubrics, data collection criteria, and evaluation outcomes with detailed discussion.
Rahman, Md, Aditya Akundi, Jakia Sultana, Tzu-Liang Tseng, Amit Lopes, and Sergio Luna. 2023. “Exploring Systems Performance Using Modeling and Simulation – Project-Based Study and Teaching.” Baltimore, Maryland.