Students build understanding of abstract mathematical functions (such as linear,
quadratic, and exponential) by creating models using STELLA software. They then
can make use of the software's simulation capabilities to explore solutions to real-world
If you’re a science teacher, you’ll find many of the lessons contained
in this book provide a powerful vehicle for explaining basic science concepts. The
motion lessons found throughout the book, for example, can be used to introduce,
reinforce, or supplement concepts taught in the physical science and/or physics
curriculum. Similarly, the population dynamics lessons can be used in the context
of many classes in the life sciences.
Other lessons such as “Contagious Diseases” and “Lead in the Body”
offer real-world case studies that are highly applicable to the more mathematically
rigorous classes in the sciences.
In 2011, the System Dynamics Society presented Diana with a Lifetime Achievement
Award for her work bringing system dynamics to K-12 education. She was just the
second recipient in the history of the System Dynamics Society to receive this prestigious
She has presented at the International System Dynamics Conference since 1994, presenting
plenary papers in 1998, 2000 and 2003. In 1995 she received the Presidential Award
for Excellence in Mathematics Teaching for the state of Oregon. In 1996 she was
first-place co-winner of the Intel Innovations in Teaching Award for the state of
Oregon. She was the director of the National Science Foundation (NSF) CC-STADUS
(Cross-Curricular Systems Thinking and Dynamics Using STELLA) grant (1993-1996)
and also co-directed the NSF CC-SUSTAIN (Cross-Curricular Systems Using STELLA:
Training and In-service) grant (1997-2000).
Diana published Lessons in Mathematics: A Dynamic Approach in 2001 and
Modeling Dynamic Systems: Lessons for a First
in 2005. She has worked in industry as a software engineer and co-authored (in the
1980s) three programming textbooks published by Computer Science Press.