Overview

Indicates a research-demonstrated benefit

Overview

PhET simulations provide interactive, game-like environments which enable scientist-like exploration, connect to the real world, and include key visual models that experts use by, for example, making the invisible visible and providing multiple representations. With an intuitive interface and minimal text, PhET sims are designed to give teachers control over how they are used in the classroom, allowing for use in lecture, recitation, lab, pre-class assignments, or homework.  Available for free!

Type of Method Curriculum supplement, Computer simulations
Level Designed for: Intro College Calculus-basedReferences coming soon, Intro College Algebra-basedReferences coming soon, Intro College ConceptualReferences coming soon, Intermediate UndergraduateReferences coming soon, Teacher Preparation, High School, Advanced Undergraduate, Other Science, Math, Chemistry, Biology, Earth Sciences
Can be adapted for: Grade School to Grad School
Setting Designed for: Lecture - Large (30+ students)References coming soon, Recitation/Discussion SessionReferences coming soon, LabReferences coming soon, Lecture - Small (<30 students), Homework, Studio
Coverage Few topics with great depth, Many topics with less depth
Topics Mechanics, Electricity / Magnetism, Waves / Optics, Thermal / Statistical, Modern / Quantum, Mathematical, Astronomy, Other Science
Instructor Effort Low
Resource Needs Access to computers either in or outside of class
Skills Designed for: Conceptual understanding of physics contentReferences coming soon, Enjoyment of physicsReferences coming soon, Connecting conceptual and mathematical understanding, Coherent framework for physics, Understanding how physics relates to the real world, Think like a scientist, Representing knowledge in multiple ways
Can be adapted for: Laboratory skillsReferences coming soon, Problem-solving skills, Designing experiments
Research Validation Based on research into: how students learnReferences coming soon, student ideas about specific topicsReferences coming soon
Demonstrated to improve: scores on multiple choice conceptual testsReferences coming soon, scores on written conceptual testsReferences coming soon
Studied using: conceptual pre/post examsReferences coming soon, student interviewsReferences coming soon, classroom observationsReferences coming soon, video of studentsReferences coming soon, research conducted at multiple institutionsReferences coming soon, research conducted by someone other than developersReferences coming soon
Compatible Methods Peer Instruction, UW Tutorials, JiTT, Ranking Tasks, ILDs, CGPS, Physlets, Context-Rich Problems, RealTime Physics, Workshop Physics, TIPERs, ABP Tutorials, SCALE-UP, Modeling, OSP, SDI Labs, OST Tutorials, ISLE, Thinking Problems, Workbook for Introductory Physics, LA Program, PET, PSET, LEPS, CAE TPS, Lecture-Tutorials, Astro Ranking Tasks, MBL, New Model Course, CPU, SCL, TEFA, CU Modern, CU E&M, CU QM, QuILTs, IQP, Thermal Tutorials, Mechanics Tutorials, Energy Project, SGSI, Paradigms, EiP, Tools for Scientific Thinking, PI QM, M&I, Tutorials, Clickers, MOP, Responsive Teaching
Similar Methods Physlets, OSP, CPU
Developer(s) PhET Interactive Simulations, University of Colorado - Boulder
Website http://phet.colorado.edu/