Students Score Points with Virtual Resistors at Engineering Day

Paul Horwitz and Sam Fentress of the Concord ConsortiumOver 100 high school students tried their hand with virtual breadboards at Engineering Day on March 29 at Tidewater Community College thanks to an electronics videogame developed by the SPARKS (Simulations for Performance Assessments that Report on Knowledge and Skills) project.

The game consists of a series of problems involving virtual resistors and wires plugged into a virtual "breadboard," which is a matrix of holes that allows students to test electronics components. Students get points for solving the problems – more points for the harder ones – and the points accumulate. They must make measurements using the virtual multimeter without blowing the virtual fuse! The biggest question is – are the SPARKS games too easy or too hard? Or are they, like Goldilocks, just right! Learn how "Practice SPARKS Perfection in Students."

Special thanks to Al Koon, Professor of Engineering Technology at Tidewater Community College (Virginia Beach, Virginia) and the content expert for the SPARKS project, for hosting us at this event.

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