Learning Through Simulations and Exercises


I’ve been using simulations to tie together segments in my class and to give students a better experience with the process of strategy.  It is important to allocate a good chunk of time — from one to three hours — to fully debrief the sim.  This debrief includes some sharing of emotions, since simulations can result in conflict and anxiety — I’ve had teams explode and almost come to blows.  It is useful to point out to participants that although this is a simulation, part of the results are a reflection of the individual themselves, along with their particular role, and the context provided by the simulation.  Three readings that may be helpful regarding sims are (Also see Brian Boyd’s website for additional resources below under OTHER TOOLS & LINKS:

Keys, J. Bernard, Robert M. Fulmer, and Stephen A. Stumpf.  1996.  Microworlds and simuworlds: Practice fields for the learning organization, Organizational Dynamics, Spring.

Orbanes, Phil. 2002. Everything I know about business I learned from Monopoly, Harvard Business Review, March.

Stumpf, Stephen A. and Jane E. Dutton. 1990. The dynamics of learning through management simulations: Let’s dance, Journal of Management Development, 9(2) 7-15.

Contributed by Mason CarpenterMason Carpenter

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