HSCStudyLab - Simulators in the classroom

By HSCStudyLab_admin on | June 15, 2016

According to the 2015 NMC Horizon report, key trends in the next five years that will accelerate learning in K-12 classrooms include:

  • Deeper learning approaches
  • Students from consumers to creators
  • The use of blended learning

There have been a number of recent studies, which advocate the use of educational games, in particular simulations, in the Science classroom as a way of achieving these learning trends.

Research by Crook, Sharma and Wilson (2015) showed that there was a significant increase in student attainment in standardised Science exams, in particular Physics in 1:1 laptop environments. The main reason for this increase in student attainment was because the Physics classrooms adopted student-centered activities such as simulations.

A report from the OECD (2010) discussed the importance of technologies, especially simulations to improve teaching and learning, “enabling pedagogical processes that are impossible or more difficult to facilitate”.

HSCStudyLab is an online learning platform for HSC Biology, Chemistry and Physics, enabling teachers, parents and students to facilitate personalized learning.

The “play” tab contains interactive activities, games and simulations for all Science subjects. These interactive activities and simulations are often centered on complex or abstract concepts and expose students to equipment or experiments that are often difficult to demonstrate in traditional classrooms.

Some examples include:

Year 12 Chemistry:

  • Galvanic cells: Perform a first hand investigation to identify the conditions under which a galvanic cell is produced

Year 12 Physics:

  • Luminiferous aether: Gather and process information to interpret the results of the Michelson-Morley experiment

Year 12 Biology:

  • Pedigrees and family trees: Process information from secondary sources to describe an example of hybridisation within a species and explain the purpose of this hybridisation

HSCStudyLab offers free trials for teachers and students.

To find out more about HSC study lab, please email:



The New Media Consortium (NMC). 2015, The NMC Horizon Report: 2015 K-12 Edition. NMC.

Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development. 2010, Inspired by technology, driven by pedagogy: A systemic approach to technology-based school innovations, NMC, Paris, France

Crook, S. J., Sharma, M. D., & Wilson, R. (2015). ‘An evaluation of the impact of 1:1 laptops on student attainment in senior high school sciences’, International Journal of Science Education, Vol. 37, No. 2, pp. 272-293.

Crook, S. J., Sharma, M. D., & Wilson, R. 2015, ‘Comparison of technology use between biology and physics teachers in a 1:1 laptop environment’, Contemporary Issues in Technology and Teacher Education, Vol. 15, No. 2, pp. 126-160.

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