Academic journal article Science Scope

Systems Thinking Solutions

Academic journal article Science Scope

Systems Thinking Solutions

Article excerpt

Solving the world's biggest problems, such as those related to sustainability and climate change, will require systems thinking. Systems thinking is crucial to science because it fosters student understanding of the interconnectedness of system components. As science teachers, we may naturally restrict our use of systems thinking to science and engineering, but systems thinking has applications for all fields of study.

Systems themselves can be incredibly complex, typically involving interactions between components that include the transfer and flow of energy and nutrients. This complexity makes it impractical to study an entire system, which is why scientists rely on system models. Such models are useful tools for understanding and predicting the behavior of systems. Appendix G of the NGSS identifies systems and system models as crosscutting concepts through which students are expected to develop an understanding of disciplinary core ideas. This is accomplished by specifying a system's boundaries and by "making explicit a model of that system" (NGSS Lead States 2013).

Like all crosscutting concepts, system and system models progress in complexity as students move from elementary to high school. At the middle school level, students come to understand that

* Systems may interact with other systems; they may have sub-systems and be a part of larger complex systems. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.