SIMIODE Newsletter December 2020

Volume VI Number 6

SIMIODE EXPO 2020, 12-13 February 2020 Registration and Details

SIMIODE Related Activities at the Virtual Joint Mathematics Meetings in January 2021

SIMIODE is engaged in several activities at the JMM 2021, 6 - 9 January 2021. We list them here.

The Joint Mathematics Meetings of the MAA and AMS will be held virtually on 6-9 January 2021. This will be an opportunity to join in the world's foremost mathematics gathering without the cost of travel and expensive hotel and food costs. In the past attendance was restricted because of travel, room, board, and registration fees, but now costs are reduced to registration fee only. So come on in and register to join JMM and experience the community and joy of mathematics.  So check out the program and plan to attend virtually and soak up great mathematics, both in teaching and research.

Everyone registered for the JMM will receive an email invitation to sign into the meeting platform via a link included in this email invitation.

SIMIODE will engage in four related events at JMM 2021, two paper sessions and one minicourse.

  • AMS Special Session - Adopt, Adapt, Assign Modeling Activities in Differential Equation, Friday, 8 January 2021, 8:00 AM - 10:50 AM

  • MAA Contributed Paper Session - Data-Driven Modeling Projects to Motivate Active Learning & Engagement, Friday, 8 January 2021, 1:00 PM - 4:15 PM 

  • SIMIODE NSF Workshop Gathering (for workshop attendees, by invitation) - A chance to catch up with colleagues from SIMIODE DEMARC and MINDE Workshops and share experiences post workshop.

  • SCUDEM Gathering and Information Session, (for all) Friday, 8 January 2021, 5:00 PM - 6:00 PM

    Everyone registered for the JMM will receive an email invitation to sign into the meeting platform via a link included in this email invitation.

    Once you sign in to the meeting platform, you will see SCUDEM Gathering and Information Session listed in the program.  An orange "Join Now" button will appear under SCUDEM Gathering and Information Session once our meeting is "live". 



We invite you to SIMIODE EXPO 2021, 12-13 February 2020. This is SIMIODE’s first international virtual conference as part of our Community of Practice.

The conference is for non-students and students interested in teaching and learning differential equations through modeling. All are welcome - academic, industry, government, non-profit, and individual.

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SIMIODE is proud to announce a Preview Version of its forthcoming online text, Differential Equations: Modeling to Describe The World.

Authored by the distinguished teacher and author, Kurt Bryan, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, Terre Haute IN USA, this text takes a modeling first and throughout approach to motivate the study and learning of differential equations in the spirit of SIMIODE, while linking to many SIMIODE Modeling Scenarios and other activities.

The text will be available as Preview Version in January 2021 and will be freely offered immediately to those who register for SIMIODE EXPO 2021, which includes a chance to meet the author in a Panel Session during the conference.

Faculty will have an opportunity to adopt this text for their students for Fall 2021 use in their teaching for a very modest cost per student, something on the order of $45 per copy. We seek comments and feedback on the text at any time. Send them along to

Differential Equations: Modeling to Describe The World puts applications and modeling front and center in an introduction to ordinary differential equations. In taking this approach we do not skimp on or skip over the mathematics but use applications to motivate almost every subject and technique. The mathematics presented is interwoven with modeling to drive both the mathematics and understanding of the application under study and to make the case that differential equations provide a powerful, indispensable toolbox for describing the world.

We present some unconventional, but important topics not usually offered in introductory texts: dimensional analysis, parameter estimation, a brief introduction to control theory via Laplace transforms, stiff systems of differential equations, and a more thorough treatment of electrical circuits. The text includes numerous exercises, including inline "Reading Exercises," as well as a section of more extensive modeling projects at the end of each chapter, many based on published SIMIODE projects, and many new activities. Several projects include data sets for experimentation and model validation.

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SIMIODE EXPO 2021 will include contributed paper sessions in break out rooms, minicourses, poster sessions, panel discussions, lounge areas, fun MathBowl, one-on-one conversations with instant ZOOM connection for “hallway” conversations, and more – all but the smell of hot coffee!!

The conference will run from 3:30 PM (Eastern US Time) through 9:00 PM on Friday, 12 February 2021, and from 10:00 AM through 7:00 PM on Saturday, 13 February 2021, with time for friendly conversations and meet-ups. All sessions will be recorded and available for Registered Attendees after the conference.

Features include:

• Exciting keynote speakers: Brian Macdonald, Director of Sports Analytics at ESPN and Matt Boelkins, Grand Valley State University, Editor PRIMUS and author

• Student Poster Sessions   and   MathBowl fun challenge

• Four Minicourses to get hands on teaching materials

• General Themes - New to modeling; Actions, practice, and tips at and above the basics; Technology; and Student focus and SCUDEM • Panels - Faculty Development Programs; Assessment and Evaluation of Student Success/Gains; Introduction of SIMIODE Online Text; and SIMIODE and SCUDEM Benefits: Where to Start?

• Opportunities for small gatherings and “hallway” conversations through instant ZOOM.

We are now accepting full registrations and submissions for your contributed talks (title and abstract) in break out rooms at our Registration Form as well as Poster Session and Panel participation.

See complete schedule at SIMIODE EXPO 2021. This is an opportunity to engage with colleagues and share your thoughts and experiences in using modeling to teach differential equations.

Come join the celebration! There is a modest registration fee of $25US for Students and $45US for Non-Students.


SIMIODE Remote Teaching Modules for Off the Shelf OnLine Instruction 

SIMIODE offers SIMIODE Remote Teaching Modules consisting of off the shelf, ready to use classroom materials which include videos for teacher and student in support of teaching and learning with complete materials for teaching and assessing results. Further, there are Questions and Answers from our OnLine 13 August 2020 SIMIODE Panel and Q&A on Remote Teaching Modules. This material is available to registered members of the Teacher Group in SIMIODE. Registration is free in SIMIODE so join the Community of Practice and benefit from these resources.


SCUDEM V 2020 Report  

SIMIODE offers SCUDEM - SIMIODE Challenge Using Differential Equations Modeling each fall and on 14 November 2020 we finished up SCUDEM V 2020. Check out the results which we highlight here.

Of the 130 teams who submitted a video presentation of their modeling effort,  27 received an Outstanding Award, 44 received a Meritorious Award, and 59 received a Successful Award. Check out the SCUDEM V 2020 problems that students worked on. We are most grateful to the 380 judges and the 95 coaches for their service in SCUDEM V 2020. We will be posting the Outstanding videos on our SIMIODE YouTube channel.

SCUDEM VI 2021 will take place in the Fall of 2021 and we will keep you posted on details.


SIMIODE Sources for Your Own Modeling Scenarios

SIMIODE offers potential modeling scenario ideas. There are  now over 500 of these!  These are materials, thoughts, pointers, summaries, articles, etc. to encourage and support your modeling scenario ideas. You must be registered and signed in to view these resources. Consider these ideas and use them to design your own modeling scenarios for your students and then publish this material in SIMIODE. 

Of course, you can publish your own source materials, perhaps ideas you have not been able to get to, but want to or wish to engage with others in producing a Modeling Scenario. Just upload them for all to see. Use the "Start a new Potential Scenario Idea" button and contribute.


Publish Your Class Efforts in SIMIODE

If you are teaching differential equations of some sort you have probably written and assigned projects. Consider publishing your materials online in SIMIODE using our peer reviewed, double blind referee system. More and more colleagues are accepting our invitation for sharing and publishing their teaching materials in SIMIODE for others to enjoy. Join in with us!

SIMIODE maintains a double-blind, peer-reviewed process for quality online publication of Modeling Scenarios and Technique Narratives. However, we encourage authors to submit their ideas at any stage of development and/or class projects for immediate feedback of a less formal nature. We will render constructive support and encouragement as well as technical feedback. In the past the SIMIODE Director, Brian Winkel, as Founding Editor of the journal PRIMUS, found this to be a very good way to foster confidence, help prospective authors contribute to the broader community, and get their ideas published.  Please drop us a note with your ideas and/or materials to We will respond quickly!

You can see how to submit your materials here. What you do is important to your students, but it is also worthy of sharing with colleagues and their students. Step up and write up your projects for SIMIODE. You will have an online refereed publication at SIMIODE. You will be pleased to know others are using your ideas, building on your success, and enjoying what you share with your students. So, what are you waiting for? Just do it!

One purpose of SIMIODE is to offer colleagues solid, refereed teaching material on which they can base a modeling first course in differential equations. Thus publishing your new ideas and activities for students is a main objective of SIMIODE so others can see your fine work and engage their own students in similar manner. However, it is reasonable to ask yourself, "Why should I prepare, submit, and publish in SIMIODE?" Here we give you many good reasons to publish in SIMIODE. Check them out and see that many fit you. Then join us by sending us your efforts.


Words from the Director

SIMIODE is a community which is alive, vibrant, and rich in resources and individual talents to assist colleagues who wish to teach differential equations using modeling to motivate students.  There are a number of ways you can add to the community:

Contribute materials.  You can learn more about this at our Author Information section and get even more details once you have signed into SIMIODE. There you will find types of materials and instructions on how to contribute and begin the process leading to publication in SIMIODE. Register to referee and review submitted materials.   Good scholarship merits attention and our double-blind, peer-referee system affords quality reviews of submitted materials. Please, visit our Manuscript Management system and register as a referee.

Post slides from your presentations, classes, or talks.   When you give a talk you can post your slides, details of the talk or meeting, and comments at Resources: Presentations. Now that you have spread the word beyond the SIMIODE community bring it back home for your fellow SIMIODE members to see. As always please let us hear from you with your concerns, your news, and your activities. Contact us at


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