Teaching: Sample Simulation
The Beer Game Simulation is a link to downloadable software called the “AT Kearney Inventory Distribution Simulator.” Students can use this simulator to explore the interrelationships between and the effects of inventory and shipping delays in single-stage (1 level) and multi-stage (3 level) supply chain scenarios. Students can “run,” save, and compare up to six different variable combination scenarios within the context of either a single-stage or multi-stage environment. The simulator also includes links to explanations about the “insights” of the models. Links that illustrate specific causality relationships and equations for model variables are also available.
Using the Simulation in Business Classes
- The simulator is fairly complete in its overview of its underlying models, causal relationships, and even variable equations. The “simulator dashboard” gives students the opportunity to experiment with different combinations of variables, save the results of each run, then compare these scenarios to understand relative effects. Options to print key information and results are provided.
- The simulator is designed so that each students can approach it in whatever way best suits his or her preferred learning style; for example, students can read through the “insights” and model background first, then try it all out by using the simulator’s “dashboard.” Other students may jump into the dashboard first, then read the “insights” and background after this experience. Students can also drill down to whatever level of detail they need to understand the interrelationships and effects of the model. Students can also print results to facilitate comparison.
Check the MERLOT Pedagogy Portal for general information about teaching games and simulations.
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