Computational Model Library

The purpose of this curricular model is to teach students the basics of modeling complex systems using agent-based modeling. It is a simple SIR model that simulates how a disease spreads through a population as its members change from susceptible to infected to recovered and then back to susceptible. The dynamics of the model are such that there are multiple emergent outcomes depending on the parameter settings, initial conditions, and chance.

The curricular model can be used with the chapter Agent-Based Modeling in Mixed Methods Research (Moritz et al. 2022) in the Handbook of Teaching Qualitative & Mixed Methods (Ruth et al. 2022).

The instructional videos can be accessed on YouTube: Video 1 (; Video 2 (; and Video 3 (

Plastics and the pollution caused by their waste have always been a menace to both nature and humans. With the continual increase in plastic waste, the contamination due to plastic has stretched to the oceans. Many plastics are being drained into the oceans and rose to accumulate in the oceans. These plastics have seemed to form large patches of debris that keep floating in the oceans over the years. Identification of the plastic debris in the ocean is challenging and it is essential to clean plastic debris from the ocean. We propose a simple tool built using the agent-based modeling framework NetLogo. The tool uses ocean currents data and plastic data both being loaded using GIS (Geographic Information System) to simulate and visualize the movement of floatable plastic and debris in the oceans. The tool can be used to identify the plastic debris that has been piled up in the oceans. The tool can also be used as a teaching aid in classrooms to bring awareness about the impact of plastic pollution. This tool could additionally assist people to realize how a small plastic chunk discarded can end up as large debris drifting in the oceans. The same tool might help us narrow down the search area while looking out for missing cargo and wreckage parts of ships or flights. Though the tool does not pinpoint the location, it might help in reducing the search area and might be a rudimentary alternative for more computationally expensive models.

Peer reviewed Gender desegregation in German high schools

Klaus Troitzsch | Published Tue Feb 5 10:12:23 2019 | Last modified Sun Nov 8 15:38:18 2020

The study goes back to a model created in the 1990s which successfully tried to replicate the changes of the percentages of female teachers among the teaching staff in high schools (“Gymnasien”) in the German federal state of Rheinland-Pfalz. The current version allows for additional validation and calibration of the model and is accompanied with the empirical data against which the model is tested and with an analysis program especially designed to perform the analyses in the most recent journal article.

Classrooms; teachers, students and learning

petertymms | Published Wed Oct 7 10:33:51 2020

This a phenomenon-based model plan. Classroom in school are places when students are supposed to learn and the most often do. But things can go awry, the students can play up and that can result in an unruly class and learning can suffer. This model aims to look at how much students learn according to how good the teacher is a classroom control and how good he or she is at teaching per se.

00b SimEvo_V5.08 NetLogo

Garvin Boyle | Published Sat Oct 5 08:29:38 2019

In 1985 Dr Michael Palmiter, a high school teacher, first built a very innovative agent-based model called “Simulated Evolution” which he used for teaching the dynamics of evolution. In his model, students can see the visual effects of evolution as it proceeds right in front of their eyes. Using his schema, small linear changes in the agent’s genotype have an exponential effect on the agent’s phenotype. Natural selection therefore happens quickly and effectively. I have used his approach to managing the evolution of competing agents in a variety of models that I have used to study the fundamental dynamics of sustainable economic systems. For example, here is a brief list of some of my models that use “Palmiter Genes”:
- ModEco - Palmiter genes are used to encode negotiation strategies for setting prices;
- PSoup - Palmiter genes are used to control both motion and metabolic evolution;
- TpLab - Palmiter genes are used to study the evolution of belief systems;
- EffLab - Palmiter genes are used to study Jevon’s Paradox, EROI and other things.

Importing a Roman transport network

Tom Brughmans | Published Sun Sep 30 08:50:43 2018

A draft model teaching how a Roman transport model can be imported into Netlogo, and the issues confronted when importing and reusing open access Roman datasets. This model is used for the tutorial:
Brughmans, T. (2018). Importing a Roman Transport network with Netlogo, Tutorial, .

Machine Learning simulates Agent-based Model

B Furtado | Published Wed Mar 7 13:10:49 2018

This is an initial exploratory exercise done for the class @ Text available here:
The program:
Reads output from an ABM model and its parameters’ configuration
Creates a socioeconomic optimal output based on two ABM results of the modelers choice
Organizes the data as X and Y matrices
Trains some Machine Learning algorithms

a computer-based role-playing game simulating the interactions between farming activities, livestock herding and wildlife in a virtual landscape reproducing local socioecological dynamics at the periphery of Hwange National Park (Zimbabwe).

REHAB has been designed as an ice-breaker in courses dealing with ecosystem management and participatory modelling. It helps introducing the two main tools used by the Companion Modelling approach, namely role-playing games and agent-based models.

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